Putting up the tree the day after Thanksgiving has always been a divisive topic. Are the early decorators crazy? Glutton’s for months of holiday stress? Or…are they just really happy?
Science says it’s the latter, with research to back it up.
According to psychologist Deborah Serani, “Christmas decorating will spike dopamine, a feel-good hormone. It does create that neurological shift that can produce happiness.”
Our brains literally flip a happy switch when the Christmas lights come on.
Serani says that chromotherapy, or color therapy, could be one reason for the brain’s reaction to the holiday décor. Bright colorful displays elicit a happier energy. Another answer could be the increase in hygge—that special, cozy and contended feeling that comes with Christmas ambiance.
Another factor? Nostalgia.
Psychoanalyst, Steve McKeown, has told Unilad: "Although there could be a number of symptomatic reasons why someone would want to obsessively put up decorations early, it's most commonly for nostalgic reasons, either to relive the magic or to compensate for past neglect."
"In a world full of stress and anxiety people like to associate with things that make them happy and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of childhood."
"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!"
And a bonus on top of all the hall-decking joy you’ll produce in yourself? You give your neighbors the impression that you’re more open and sociable as well, extending the holiday joy throughout the community.