Do more of what makes you happy

Just as materialism transformed life in the 20th century, experientialism has the power to do the same in the 21st century, says the author of an influential new book “Stuffocation: Living more with Less” by James Wallman.


Wallman is a big advocate of “investing in experiences and memories, rather than the short-loved appeal of objects”

We buy too much, have too much, hold on too much. We are weighed down “by our own excesses” and our insatiable hunger for ever-more stuff is making us “joyless, anxious, depressed”. Our obsession with having things is unsustainable, he argues. It has a huge ecological impact. It adds to our debt. And it no longer propels us up the social ladder.


Experientialism – a value system based on experiences. In experientialism, doing becomes the new having. Happiness and status are defined not but what people have, “but by what people do”.

Experientialism is better for society, better for the world, better for us as people in terms of our happiness and status and giving us meaning in life, he argues. “And once you have a greater sense of happiness, once you have a greater sense of identity, you will be more resilient in your life and in terms of making better choices.”…


To be happier and healthier today, tomorrow and in the long run, try the following experientialist habits:

1. Know Your Stuff

To make sure your possessions play a healthy role in your life, ask yourself these questions: How often do I use my possessions? How much stuff do I really need? Do my things give me experiences and make me happy, or are they bringing hassle, debt, stress and depression?

2. Enjoy the journey

Place less emphasis on the goal and more on the process – the journey to get there. You do not have to change your world and give up your job, but you should do something you love.

3. Be in the moment

To get the most out of experiences it is important to dive into them completely.

4. Be Your own Audience

Social scientists have discovered that there are two types of motivation – intrinsic, when you do something for yourself and the enjoyment of the experience, and extrinsic, when you do something to impress others or for some reward at the end. If your motivation for doing something is intrinsic it is more likely to make you happy.

5. Put People First

Prioritise the relationships you have.

6. Spend Well and Feel Good

Ask yourself: am I buying this for show, or to really use now? Am I spending my energy and time on what matters to me?

7. Choose Life, Choose Experience

Life is a series of events that you experience, one after another, like a daisy chain of moments. Enjoy experiences that bring happiness and give your life meaning.


16 Things To Give Up If You Want A Happy Life



17 thoughts on “Do more of what makes you happy

  1. Billy says:

    Absolutely 🙂 Agree in full.

  2. ErikaKind says:

    Me too… agree and find myself in your words! Life is about living. And living means being joyful and going for the things that matches our joyful core.

  3. So true – wise and inspiring, thanks for sharing 🙂 H xxx

  4. Mrun says:

    Beauiful post! Actually, I should say beautiful posts.. especially loved Smile and What is your motivation?
    And thank you for the like on my post..☺ Looking forward to reading more!

  5. Mrun says:

    Reblogged this on justlegible and commented:
    We have read this everywhere.. heard it a million times.. and still we keep doing things which basically have no value.. This is a new twist to an old concept.. New name as well.. Experientialism.. loved it.. Try it!

  6. bert0001 says:

    … experience materialism is still stuffing memories … and it might not be good for the environment either if everyone wants to experience the birth of pengiuns in the antartic …
    … after all, experiencing ‘having stuff’ is also experiencing …
    … how satisfied will you be if you cannot get ‘that’ experience or ‘that’ relationship, everybody is talking about …
    🙂 freewheeling and grateful because you gave the mind some stuff to reason about 🙂

  7. Netta says:

    I don’t know about other people but having to much stuff depresses me. I left behind a life where stuff was just piling up and I couldn’t even use everything I had and that was part of the reason why I changed everything. Now I own only the stuff I really want and I buy only the best I can afford and it has changed my relationship with my possessions.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s