These are the kinds of gifts that actually make people happy, according to science
Stumped on what to buy your friends or family for the holidays this year? Here’s a tip: A new study says experiences make better presents than items. Why? Because experiences are gifts that, scientifically, actually make people happy.
The study, published in the journal Emotion, suggests that people value experiences far more than material things.
Psychologists found that thinking about experiences promoted happier, more altruistic behavior than thinking about possessions.
People are often more grateful for what they’ve done than for what they have.
“Feelings of gratitude are sparked more by trips people have taken, events they’ve attended, and meals they’ve eaten than by the ‘stuff’ they’ve bought,” the researchers added. “In other words, people are often more grateful for what they’ve done than for what they have.”
So if you can’t figure out what to buy your person this year, consider what experience you can treat them to: A mani/pedi, a massage, a mini-vacation, or a fancy dinner are just the tip of the iceberg. The possibilities are endless.