Should you spend money on Experiences?

In this New York Times article, Carl Richards confirms an important lesson I learned for myself many years ago:

It’s fine to spend money on memorable experiences.

Earlier in life, I was certain that the wisest and most prudent use of discretionary money was to invest it into assets that would appreciate in value, like stocks and real estate. “Be a saver, not a spender,” was my motto.

But then I realized that the most precious memories I had were the family vacations I had growing up, our honeymoon on a white powder beach resort on St. John, taking my kids to Disneyland, and seeing the awe on my son and late father’s faces when I had the privilege of showing them St. Peter’s Basilica and Notre Dame Cathedral for the first time in their lives.

That, my friends, is money well spent. What could possibly be more valuable than those priceless experiences?

To be clear, I’m not advocating going into debt or spending money you don’t have on frivolous things, and of course it is important to save and invest for the future. But a lopsided pursuit of ever more material wealth, if it means missing out on being able to experience  joy and wonder with loved ones is not the path way to a great life.

We all get that nagging feeling that the money we want to spend on someone and something we love should be saved instead.

So SPEND THE MONEY! I promise you won’t regret it!

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