Psychological Science2014-10-31 9:51 AM

The Unforeseen Costs of Extraordinary Experience

Abstract

People seek extraordinary experiences—from drinking rare wines and taking exotic vacations to jumping from airplanes and shaking hands with celebrities. But are such experiences worth having? We found that participants thoroughly enjoyed having experiences that were superior to those had by their peers, but that having had such experiences spoiled their subsequent social interactions and ultimately left them feeling worse than they would have felt if they had had an ordinary experience instead. Participants were able to predict the benefits of having an extraordinary experience but were unable to predict the costs. These studies suggest that people may pay a surprising price for the experiences they covet most.


Full Article

KEYWORDS

SHARE & LIKE

COMMENTS

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Psychological Science

Psychological Science, the flagship journal of the Association for Psychological Science, is the leading peer-reviewed journal publishing empirical research spanning the entire spectrum of the science of psychology.

0 Following 0 Fans 0 Projects 6 Articles

SIMILAR ARTICLES

AbstractMaximizing science achievement is a critical target of educational policy and has important implications for national and international economi

Read More

AbstractMature amygdala-prefrontal circuitry regulates affect in adulthood but shows protracted development. In altricial and semialtricial species, ca

Read More

AbstractChildbirth is usually the most painful event of a mother’s life, and resonates in individual and collective memory for years. The current study

Read More

AbstractIn two studies, we found that sharing an experience with another person, without communicating, amplifies one’s experience. Both pleasant and u

Read More

AbstractYou marry your spouse “for better, for worse” and “for richer, for poorer,” but does your choice of partner make you richer or poorer? It is un

Read More

AbstractPeople seek extraordinary experiences—from drinking rare wines and taking exotic vacations to jumping from airplanes and shaking hands with cel

Read More