We are fortunate to live in a time and culture of plenty, unlike many other parts of the world. But materialism isn’t always an effective route to happiness. Research indicates that just buying things because you want them can leave you less satisfied with life and more likely to be depressed. You’d do better to invest in experiences rather than more ‘stuff’ because experiences improve with time where new possessions just become old. New experiences are also more likely to entail greater social relationships which in turn boosts happiness.