Now that we’re midway through September, everyone’s favourite holiday season is fast approaching. But why not start early?
Experts in the field of psychology reckon that decking your halls earlier than the official month of Christmas could increase your happiness, and here’s why:
Now, at first glance it’s no surprise that putting up your Christmas tree and transforming your home, be it into a Christmas grotto or a Winter Wonderland for the festivities, generally makes people happy.
However, less surprising and actually quite interesting are the reasons why, and it’s not as plain and simple as you’d expect.
Psychology experts are saying that those who put up their decorations earlier around the home are likely to increase their happiness in preparation for the holiday season.
Why? Well…over to the experts.
Why does putting up Christmas decorations make you happy?
Psychoanalyst Steve McKeown, owner of The Mckeown Clinic looked into why decking the halls earlier makes people happy
Speaking to The Hook, he said:
“As well as acting as an achor back to childhood, decorations implicitly and explicitly communicate to friendliness and cohesiveness to other neighbours, according to the Journal of Environmental Psychology.
A study in the journal suggested that decorations can be used as ‘cues as a way of communicating their accessibility to neighbours’.
Participants in the study were shown houses covered in decorations and some that were not. They concluded that the decorated homes were more ‘friendly and cohesive’, making them happier.”
The inference about Christmas decorations being ‘anchors’ for memories of childhood is something we should all be able to relate to; Christmas as a child was always a huge event, and probably the main thing you looked forward to every year.
Writing letters to Santa, making and decorating gingerbread houses or cookies to hang on the Christmas tree, creating handmade Christmas cards for family and friends, watching your favourite Christmas films with a hot chocolate…the list of activities goes on and on, so it makes perfect sense that these memories can be evoked years later as adults when we put up our decorations once again.
What’s more, someone did recently decide to put up their Christmas decorations early. Eanna Healy from Limerick, Ireland, returned home to find that his housemates had put up the Christmas decorations, on Saturday September 14th.
From a fully decorated tree, to lights around the fireplace, and even a crackling fire display screen on the TV, Healy’s mates were going all the way.
The video of Healy’s impromptu discovery went viral, with many people shocked at Christmas celebrations beginning so early.
Speaking of his surprise to The Hook, Healy said:
“I think those expert psychologists might be right. I’ve said to my housemates a few times that I won’t be around much over Christmas so I’ll be missing all the fun.
They put them up as a joke, but we were all chatting that night and came to the conclusion that the house feels a lot warmer and more ‘cosy’…I’m delighted they’re up anyway!
I was definitely not expecting it, I’ve never heard of anyone putting up decorations or the tree so early. They are staying up anyway, if someone wants to put them up early then why not! The house is bare without them anyway”.
Healy makes a great point, and in all fairness, it’s almost persuading me to do the same – though I’m not quite sure I want to venture into my loft just yet.
Anyone else want to skip Halloween and go straight to Christmas?
Images via Getty