Putting Up Christmas Decorations Early Could Make You Happier So Falalalala

It turns out there might be a connection between why smiling is Buddy the Elf’s favorite and his deep and unwavering commitment to the magic of Christmas. According to experts, unwinding the twinkly lights and hanging the mistletoe early can actually make you happier.

“In a world full of stress and anxiety people like to associate to things that make them happy,” psychoanalyst Steve McKeown told Unilad, “and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of the childhood.”

In other words, everyone adhering to strict post-Thanksgiving decorating policies now has scientific reason to stop telling me to “wait until December,” or “chill with Love Actually,” or “stop listening to Mariah Carey‘s Christmas album in July.”

The nostalgia associated with the holidays can also stir up a feeling of positivity, psychotherapist Amy Morin told the outlet.

“Nostalgia helps link people to their personal past and it helps people understand their identity,” she explained. “For many putting up Christmas decorations early is a way for them to reconnect with their childhoods.” Decorating for the season can also help people connect with lost loved ones.

While much of the allure of decorating for the holidays is for nostalgic reasons, the festivity of lights and inflatable Santa lawn ornaments might also make your neighbors like you better: the Journal of Environmental Psychology suggests that decorations are used as “cues as a way of communicating their accessibility to neighbors.” Those with decorations are assumed to be more friendly than those without.

If there’s any reason to reconsider a stringent no-Christmas-before-Thanksgiving rule, or at least to stop shaming others with an affinity for elf culture, it’s this.

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