It’s getting to that time of year where we’re starting to hear the C-word. No, not THAT C-word… I’m talking about Christmas.
As far as I’m concerned, the best bit about Christmas isn’t actually Christmas Day – it’s the build-up, where everyone is happy and festive, in-between getting drunk and stressing about Christmas presents.
We all know a coworker or family member who always seems to get into the spirit of the season a little too early. You know the type – before it even turns Thanksgiving, they’re digging the Christmas decorations out of the garage, and laying candy canes around the house.
While this is incredibly endearing, it can also a little irritating. But it turns out that they might have had the right idea all along.
According to British psychoanalyst Steve McKeown, people who get in the festive spirit sooner rather than later are generally more excited by life, which obviously is a pretty good thing.
McKeown thinks that the nostalgia that we associate taking out the Christmas decorations takes us back to the days when we were kids. You know – when were young, and Christmas was the best thing ever!
McKeown told British website Unilad: “Although there could be a number of symptomatic reasons why someone would want to obsessively put up decorations early, 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 to things that make them happy and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of their 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!”
On a slightly more intense note, the nostalgia of Christmas celebrations can also remind us of memories of loved ones no longer with us.
McKeown continued: “It may be a bittersweet feeling. Perhaps the holidays serve as a reminder of when a loved one was still alive. Or maybe looking at a Christmas tree reminds someone of what life was like when they still believed in Santa.”
I know he’s a medical professional, but he sounds more like a frickin’ philosopher right there!
He said there’s even more to it, too. Apparently the people who like to cover the outside of their house in Christmas lights and decorations are thought to be more ‘friendly and cohesive’ (whatever that means) compared to their neighbors.
So, next time someone tells you off for being ‘extra’ around the special time of year, just bear in mind that they’re just jealous of how happy and fulfilled you are.