Hey all, it's tax season. And guess what that means? For most of us, it means taking a deep (and sometimes hard) look at our incomes, spending habits, and expenses over the past year. For some, it's a happy time and you get money back. Yippee! For others, it's time to pay Uncle Sam (not so much fun). Either way, now is the time to decide what to spend money on THIS year.
I definitely see a pattern in friends, family, and clients who tend to be in one mindset or the other: The Material Spenders or The Experience Spenders. Of course I love clothes, coats, and (for real) shoes, but I have always been solidly on the Experience Spending side. AKA, I LOVE vacation. Big ones are best (of course) but it doesn't matter, the weekend trip in a different part of town, "Up North", whatever it may be. Experiences are the best, and here's why.
Experiences balance you out. Ever heard the term, "Work hard, play hard?" That's what this is all about. Getting out of town gets you out of your normal routine, your usual "places", and reminds you that there's something out there besides the office. Maybe you even need a reminder of why you're working so hard in the first place! That's what vacation is for, my friend.
Along with "Balance", experiences offer insight into what we're doing with ourselves and what needs to be changed. Ever get a day or two into a vacation, only to realize just how stressed you were leading up to then? That's a sign that something needs to change at home. And hopefully you have some more time to figure that out before you get back! Plus you'll be more relaxed and motivated to do so if you're not at home.
Experiences are all about connection. Connection with ourselves, connection with others, connection with nature or even the big city. Experiences make you feel like you're part of something bigger than yourself. Experiences are also where we make most of our favorite memories, because they stand out!
Getting out of our usual routine and place allows us to learn about other places and people. It doesn't matter if it's across town or in a different city in the same state, cultures are different. I can definitely say there is a different culture in my hometown (Stewartville MN, represent!) compared to Uptown Minneapolis, which is only two hours away. Learning about how others live in turns leads us to question, grow and appreciate, which leads me to my last point....
Experiences make you feel grateful. To have opportunities, to travel, to experience, to grow. I think most people can agree that leaving for a while makes you especially grateful for what you have when you return. If you're traveling without companions or pets, this time away also allows you to miss these parts of your life. And let's not forget, work! Hopefully some time away also allows you to feel grateful for your job, more motivated, and excited to return.
Alright folks, let's plan that next experience!
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