4 Reasons to Prioritize Experiences Over Goods in Your Life Even if you've already set your goals for the year, carve out some time to try something new and different.

By Coppy Holzman

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The start of the year is a popular time to set positive, attainable goals. Many resolutions are small, attainable and habit changing, such as volunteering and exercising more, making new friends, or spending time with family.

Related: Keeping a Daily Journal Can Give You Tremendous Power

Over the past decade, I've seen numerous Charitybuzz bidders live out their dreams when they win the experience of a lifetime and support an incredible cause. This year, I encourage you to add a new resolution to your list: spend more of your time and money on experiences than material goods to find happiness in 2015. Here's why:

1. Lasting satisfaction

There's been a flurry of research in recent years showing that when people buy or receive something new, there's an instant but very fleeting burst of enjoyment. Experiences on the other hand provide much more lasting happiness. There's the excitement of anticipation, the enjoyment of the activity itself and a memory formed that lasts years, maybe even forever. Some experiences, whether it's a guitar lesson or lunch with a celebrity, provide lasting happiness in an even more tangible way -- like a new skill or living out a lifelong dream.

2. Better for the planet

Americans have more stuff than anyone else on Earth, and it's no secret that mass-produced consumer goods have an environmental impact. Unless your experience includes flying around the world on a nearly empty jumbo jet, indulging in an activity instead of buying a physical item is often a more sustainable option. This has particular appeal to millennials, who surveys show are more concerned about sustainability than previous generations. As an added bonus, activities like a round of golf or wine tasting class are more likely to support local business.

Related: 9 New Year's Resolutions for Every Entrepreneur

3. Shareability

Speaking of millennials, let's talk social media. You don't see many people bragging about an expensive new handbag or extravagant watch on Facebook or Instagram. Even in our supposedly materialistic culture, that kind of sharing is considered tacky. Sharing memorable moments about your front-row concert tickets or recent stand-up paddle board excursion though? That's the stuff social-media posts are made of. Narcissistic or not, people like to feel interesting and admired -- and that's the kind of social currency an experience can provide.

4. Quality time

Time is one thing no one seems to have enough of and the most common life regret is not spending enough of it with people we care about. Going on an experience that requires you and your family or friends to carve out time for one another is priceless. Whether it's a son and his mother enjoying season tickets to a local theater company or a father and daughter taking tennis lessons together, this kind of outing is truly what memories are made of.

I admit, I'm biased. But only because I'm fortunate enough to witness the indescribable joy these types of experiences provide on a regular basis. In 2015, may you enjoy incredible experiences that make memories to last a lifetime with family and friends.

Related: The Truth About What It Means to Be Successful

Coppy Holzman

Founder and CEO, Charitybuzz

Coppy Holzman is the founder and CEO of Charitybuzz, which has harnessed the power of cause marketing to help brands and nonprofits raise more than $100 million through online charity auctions. Prior to starting Charitybuzz, Holzman was one of the founder members of Webvan.com, one of the first online groccery-delivery services. Before that, Holzman spent many years as a senior executive in retail at Federated Department Stores. He holds a B.S. in economics from University of Pennsylvania.  

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Related Topics

Business News

Grads From This Midwestern School Are More Likely to Start a Billion Dollar Company Than Founders Who Went To Stanford, Harvard, or MIT: Study

Some surprising schools outranked Ivy League universities with the likelihood that their grads would found a unicorn.

Starting a Business

This Retiree's Leisurely Side Hustle Makes $66,000 a Year and, 'You Don't Even Need to Go to High School to Do It'

Barbara Hill wanted a flexible, part-time job that would transition well into retirement. Now she mentors younger people who are making over $200,000 a year. Here's her insider's guide to getting started.

Starting a Business

4 Hard Truths You Must Accept to Become Successful

As you buckle up for entrepreneurship, remember – it's not just a journey but an epic adventure towards enduring achievement in the dynamic business world.

Leadership

Women Are More Likely to Be Laid Off Than Promoted in Tech — Here's How We Can Change the Status Quo

In the face of a tech industry where women are more likely to be laid off than be promoted to leadership positions, it's time to hack the system and reboot the gender balance for good to turbocharge innovation and propel the industry.

Starting a Business

How Can You Make Sure Your Business Will Survive Anything? Try These 3 Proven Strategies

No matter how uncertain the economy is, you can survive anything as long as you prepare. Here are a few strategies to consider.

Side Hustle

Getting Laid Off Allowed Him to Focus on His Sentimental Side Hustle. Now He's on Track to Earn Over $700,000 in 2024.

Alaa El Ghatit wasn't fulfilled at his day job. So he started LifeOnRecord to help people record memories and well wishes.