Demonic possessions.

Did you know about the Diderot effect?

Good day to you!

Today I’m sharing a podcast episode that one of our member (and app tester), Daniel, shared with us earlier today. That’s a gratitude for you, dear!

Yep, this is how cool our community is 😎😇
I know, I know, you’d like to be a part of it.

This episode barely takes 30 minutes, and they totally worth it. Dr Laurie Santos, cognitive scientist and Professor of Psychology at Yale University digs into the impacts of materialistic things versus experiences on our overall happiness.
Tips: listen at 1.25 to 1.5 speed ;)

👉👂📣 Demonic possessions 👂📣👈

If you don’t have time to listen to it, here are my take-homes. This is not an exhaustive resume, but rather things that caught my attention along the discussion:

  1. Diderot effect: as soon as you acquire something with outstanding quality, it makes all your other stuff look rubbish. So you end up spending more money than you have… It almost controls you.

  2. The thrill you get from buying stuff is scientifically a dopamine release. It triggers pleasurable sensations AND the wish to repeat the behavior. Evolutionary speaking, this happens to make sure we keep doing the important things: eat, have sex.

  3. We buy for a number of reasons: signaling (a hole in Darwin’s theory of evolution: i.e. why peacock have such a beautiful yet absurd tail) is one of them.

  4. Our possessions don’t make us happier. Why?

    1/ “hedonic adaptation” : what seems new and exciting at first tends to fade over time ; this new stuff of yours ends up staying in front of you, so whenever it malfunctions, you’re bothered. 2/ the “green-eyed monster” or ‘distractive comparisons’, the fact that there will always be someone with a better, newer item out there.

  5. Money could make us happier, with an alternative kind of purchase: the experiential one. Spending on doing might feel frivolous, but turns out it’s often a beneficial experience after and before we get to enjoy them. Waiting for an experience usually feels good (excitement) versus bad for a material one (frustration). Plus there’s a social aspect: you get to do them with others (during) and share memories (after). Last but not least, reflecting on these experiences inspire more gratitude than reflecting on possessions. And it’s proven that by feeling grateful you end up being more generous with others.

  6. About buying too much: “I often purchased things thinking that I would become this kind of person who does XYZ, but I’d always end up not doing any of them.”

  7. About having less: “when I walked into a room, not only did it feel lighter but it also felt more inviting. The thing I keep either serve a purpose or have an important meaning” (reminds me of something 🤔)

  8. The material possessions we do love tend to have something to do with experience (i.e. a desk I built, or the bike I ride,..) => there’s a fine line here, finer than the pretty straight forward : stuff OR experience, that I had always thought about…

Two books to dig deeper into this topic [haven’t read yet] 👇

  • Possessed: Why We Want More Than We Need, by Bruce Hood

  • The Year of Less, Cait Flanders


📱The app does all the basic

Start documenting your possessions, and feel good about it. Let’s start with this bookshelf of yours that’s about to implode! 👀

With tomorrow’s weekly release (make sure you have the latest version from TestFlight) - you’ll be able to: sort your stuff using categories, sub categories and even sub-sub categories, as well as use a broader range of emotions. We love making changes that you suggest, so go ahead and suggest, we’re all ears! 🤓


Have a beautiful day ! 🧜‍♀️

Mathilde

Photo by Jeremy Beadle on Unsplash