My consumerist wish list:
Eames RAR rocking chair
Decent food processor
A few quality items of new clothing
Orla Kiely anything
My simple living wish list:
Time to sit and read more books
Time to cook delicious food and linger over meals
Being with friends who I love to chat with
Paring down my wardrobe
Learning new creative skills
I may never get to own anything from my first list. Each item has a function or a design that I really like but do I need these things? Will they actually improve the quality of my life? Will they give me lasting happiness? After all, I already have somewhere to sit, utensils to cook with, more than one radio, plenty of clothes and a couple of Orla Kiely items.
My second list is achievable - in fact, I am already making good progress with some of these goals. They will give me regular pleasure, lasting memories and a sense of achievement. I won't have to spend too much money to achieve them but they will require an investment of my time. I can make time for these things in my life now.
Money can buy you happiness to some extent. Spending money on experiences that give you lasting pleasure such as going on a holiday will give you wonderful memories. And owning something beautifully designed can be a daily source of happiness. But, for most of us, things that cost a lot of money require us putting off our happiness until some time in the future when we will have enough money to afford these things.
Wanting nice things is OK but if all your happiness is geared towards buying and acquiring bigger and better items or experiences in the future you might be missing so many things that could give you pleasure today.
I can forgo my Eames RAR rocking chair. I can buy a cheaper alternative or simply admire the beauty of the design from afar. Don't get me wrong I'd love to own one but I don't think I'll regret not buying one. But is there an equivalent replacement for spending time with friends and family? In future years will I regret not spending enough time with my loved ones?