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10 Reasons to Get Your Holiday Cheer On Early

Yes, I am one of those annoying people who starts playing Christmas music on November 1 while scrolling through Target’s website for cute little Christmas decorations. Before you squint your eyes in anger, hear me out! Regardless of what you celebrate, the holiday season — which I would argue begins November 1 — is the perfect excuse to harness more cheer than is socially acceptable during other times of year. Do you really want to be like Scrooge or the Grinch? I think not. Thus, there are more reasons than you’d think to get on my level.

Studies have literally shown that people who decorate for Christmas earlier are happier.

You can’t fight the science. According to the New York Post, it triggers good memories, makes you more social, and causes you to be more altruistic. So, why not decorate early? You have nothing to lose. If you’re usually one of those Grinches who frowns upon decorating before Thanksgiving, you might just find your Grinch heart growing a size or two in the process.

Small Christmas decorations are a fairly inexpensive way to spruce up your space.

You can head to your local dollar store, Target, or Five Below to find cute little decorations for your dorm. Target has all kinds of decorations for $15 and under, so no matter your style (snowy white or full of reds and greens), Target has you covered. Five Below has even cheaper decorations (as the name says, all under $5). With all of these options, you can have your entire dorm screaming holiday cheer and joy for under $15.

If you’re telling me that the presence of holiday decorations (such as a Christmas tree or menorah) doesn’t make you smile, you’re lying to yourself.

One of the reasons I love having little holiday decorations around my dorm is that all I have to do to improve my mood is take a quick look around my room. We spend a fair amount of time in our dorms, so why not make it happier? Especially since this is the only time of year that it’s acceptable to put out a stuffed Olaf (which I don’t think is fair, but…).

Why not enjoy Christmas-y drinks as long as you can?

As per Collier’s article (coming soon!), Starbucks (and Dunkin’ as well) has released some amazing holiday drinks for the season. Since they’re not out year-round, why not have them as much as your wallet will allow? Besides, don’t tell me that the red and green cups aren’t a nice change from the usual boring colors.

Christmas music is the best thing ever. You can fight me on this.

There are literally so many amazing options for Christmas music. If you’re tired of Mariah Carey (although I don’t personally understand how this is possible), there are many more traditional options as well as new bops coming out each holiday season. Spotify has so many Christmas playlists for every mood that you can’t possibly get tired of it. Despite what you may think, Christmas music is not always upbeat — there’s a wide variety, from lowkey to singing about heartbreak to full-on Alvin and the Chipmunks, so there’s a Christmas song for whatever your mood.

Holiday movies are adorable.

There are also many beautiful options for holiday movies, from the traditional Santa Claus movies to the new Christmas Prince movies on Netflix to Hallmark’s seemingly endless specials. If you’re like me and got Disney+ as soon as it was physically possible, you now have an abundance of holiday movies to watch at your fingertips. It will take you time to get through all of the amazing classics and even new specials that Disney has blessed our hearts with, so you should start now. If you need me, I’ll be wrapped up in a blanket binging Disney Christmas movies.

Holiday cheer is the perfect way to distract yourself from such a stressful time of the semester.

Don’t you love how finals are mixed in with the holidays? It’s kind of a bummer, but a positive twist is that the holidays give us something to look forward to while we’re grinding out papers. Even if you’re just excited to go home for a while and not have piles of homework to do for once, practicing early cheer early on can get you hype and hopeful from as early as possible.

You can be doing your wallet a favor by looking for gifts for family and friends early.

Black Friday who? There are a lot of sales happening before Black Friday that are hiding right under our noses. If you have ideas for what your loved ones would like, you can start looking now and I guarantee you that you’ll start finding sales already. I, for one, have been browsing through Century 21’s holiday gift section where I’ve bought a few gifts for over 60 percent off and Target where I’ve found a whole range of things on sale. If you’re like me and looking for gifts for loved ones puts you on a sort of joy-high, looking from now can get you excited for their reactions come gift-giving time.

Getting ~joyful~ early doesn’t mean you have to forget about Thanksgiving.

If you also love Thanksgiving as a time to spend with family and eat more than is normally considered acceptable, you don’t have to give it any less love just because you want to celebrate Christmas as well. I still have out my mini pumpkins and little stuffed sloth scarecrow (all from Target), who have befriended my new Christmas decorations.

Holiday cheer is a kind of self-care.

The Christmas season is my favorite time of year, but not just for the reasons above — more importantly, because it brings me closer to my family and friends. Ramping up my cheer early helps me to not only make my dorm look cute, but look forward to spending the holidays with my family. For me, this thought gives me much needed hope when I’m feeling particularly stressed out. Holiday cheer can have this effect for you, too, so give it a try and see if you agree with me.

The moral of this article is to give celebrating holiday cheer early a chance. The Grinch gave it a shot, and look how well that turned out for him! No matter if you do so by adding some Christmas music into your usual Spotify playlist, watching a couple of Christmas classics, or doing some holiday-themed Starbucks runs, sprinkle some holiday cheer into your life before Thanksgiving and see the joy it’ll add to your life (as for me, I’ll be doing all of the above). Do yourself a favor and celebrate something during this simultaneously cheery and spooky season. No matter what you celebrate, or if you even celebrate anything, take time for yourself in some way and utilize the joys that come with this season to do so.

Arianna Antigone

Columbia Barnard '22

Arianna is a senior at Barnard College majoring in English and looking toward a career in law. She loves exploring New York City, binging Netflix, and finding new pasta places. If you need her, you can find her sipping her third iced coffee of the day or defending her love of pasta.
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