If you’re used to feeling guilty about putting up those holiday decorations before Thanksgiving, you’re in luck. Break out those winter villages, head office door to office door caroling and frost those snowman cookies. While the Scrooges of the world may be mocking you into oblivion, according to one psychologist, early holiday decorations are a signifier of an excited, happy person.
Psychoanalyst Steve McKeown told Unilad that holiday decorations are nostalgic and almost therapeutic for those who use them.
“Decorations are simply an anchor or pathway to those old childhood magical emotions of excitement. So putting up those Christmas decorations early extends the excitement!” he said. “The holiday season stirs up a sense of nostalgia. Nostalgia helps link people to their personal past and it helps people understand their identity. For many putting up Christmas decorations early is a way for them to reconnect with their childhoods."
McKeown went on to say Christmas decorations can act as a buffer to the many issues that we are dealing with in the world today.
“In a world full of stress and anxiety people like to associate to things that make them happy and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of the childhood,” he said.
But if feeling less stressed isn't enough reason to deck the halls, researchers suggest another reason to decorate early for the holidays: it makes you seem friendlier.
In the past, Christmas decorations have been to communicate a welcoming and friendly environment to surrounding neighbors, according to The Journal of Environmental Psychology.
In a study conducted by the journal, decorations were discovered to be “cues as a way of communicating their accessibility to neighbors.” The study showed participants houses the were decorated and houses that were not. Participants believed the decorated houses to be more “friendly and cohesive” than the non-decorated neighbors.
So there you have it. Continue breaking out those festive decorations around your home and office the second Thanksgiving ends (or honestly, before Thanksgiving ends. No judgement here!).