Study: Decorating earlier for Holidays can increase happiness

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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - Christmas is more than a month and a half away, but some have already decorated their homes. A study said those who decorate earlier may be happier.

"Studies have suggested that it does make people happier and it makes sense why people are decorating earlier and earlier. So that they can extend that feeling," said Kelsie Hendrickson, a clinical psychologist with St. Luke's.

She said the research said it releases different hormones in the brain.

"One of them being dopamine and that’s kind of that pleasure, feel good hormone," she said.

Hendrickson said that people oftentimes have a good feeling associated with the holiday.

"A lot of a people have nostalgia as well. It’s a way to connect with family and friends and even loved ones that are no longer with us," she said.

She added that some may not feel that way with the holiday's though.For those people, she asks others to be supportive.

"Reaching out to friends and family, and for those who don’t have friends and family locally, using technology such as Facebook and FaceTime. Things of that nature," she continued. "Even reaching out to those who aren’t friends and family, who are coworkers or neighbors."

Jared Rands, owner of String Em Up Lights, has been putting lights up outside of residents' homes for more than five years.

"I’ll start getting calls even before Halloween," he said. "I put some up in the middle of October."

Hendrickson told KMVT that those who residents who decorate outside their homes could be more kind.

"Seen as more friendly and approachable and kind of more cohesive in their neighborhood," she said. "I think that’s important in a world where we’re often divided by politics or religion that we can all come together as one community."

For Fred Meyer customer Sylvia Legaard, who was seen walking in the Christmas aisle, she said she decorates for Christmas after Thanksgiving.

"Just tradition and not that it’s wrong for me, it’s just a tradition and I don’t want the decorations to be up for ever and ever," Legaard said.

For those who may think it may be too early to decorate, Hendrickson has a challenge for them.

"To actually try it this year, because what do they have to lose? Christmas decorating, just talking about it, right? It kind of stops us in our tracks and say 'Wow that’s really beautiful,'" she continued. "So, it helps us be mindful in this world of stress and chaos. It makes us take a step back."



 
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