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Why Christmas music can be so irritating and what to do about it

According to clinical psychologist Linda Blair, Christmas songs can actually make us feel trapped. You end up spending most of your energy in trying not to hear what is being played on repeat. In fact, Dr. Blair believes that store workers are at a higher risk of being mentally drained by this onslaught of cheerful Christmas music.

It’s a problem that’s been hitting Christmas tree lots for the past several years. “The best thing about music today — and aren’t we fortunate — is that it’s vast and accessible for all of us.” “How it will affect you depends on where you’re at,” she told in a telephone interview.

Does Christmas music stress you out

Between decorating the tree, setting a fire, and wrapping presents, there’s always a never-ending playlist of Mariah Carey, Frank Sinatra, and maybe even N’Sync playing in the background. However, while these classic holiday tunes are uplifting for many, other feel that Christmas music brings down their mood. So if you’re wondering why Christmas music makes you sad, there’s actually a reason for it, and it’s incredibly depressing. For one thing, holiday music playing in retail settings isn’t there purely out of cheeriness—it’s been strategically placed there to put you in the mood to shop.

Rodino also suggested that people who experience stress or sadness around the holidays – whether it’s from Christmas music or something else – try and uncover what could be causing those emotions. We’ve all heard it, the endless stream of Christmas music on the radio, in the mall, and on street corners that starts ever earlier and doesn’t end until December 26th. Some love it, others loathe it, but escape is all but impossible either way. Rarely do we ask though, why do we play as much Christmas music as we do? After all, department stores rarely loop songs for other holidays in the same way as they do for Christmas.

Why does the Grinch have a small heart?

One theory is that millennials use Christmas carols as a way to escape from the sometimes harsh reality of our modern world. We’re a stressed-out generation, but listening to sappy sounds of the “perfect” holiday season gives us a chance to temporarily forget our troubles. Don’t write off all Christmas music just because you’re tired of the same old artists playing the same old songs.

  • (She’s a nurse + I’m in retail.) I also have another sister, who is usually not mentioned due to not being in the picture.
  • Isolation has been a major source of stress for many during the pandemic.
  • If you don’t have close relationships with your family or friends at Christmas, it could be hard to be lonely.
  • There’s nothing better than watching everyone get into the holiday spirit, and a huge part of it is through singing and dancing to festive music.
  • Rarely do we ask though, why do we play as much Christmas music as we do?

So maybe let the turkey cool before you start playing Christmas music everywhere you go. Those retailers have likely done their own research on music and behavior. Because Christmas music makes people feel happy, it keeps shoppers in the store longer and entices them to spend more money. But, he notes retailers often break out the holly as early as possible becauseresearchhas shown that playing Christmas music, combined with holiday scents, leads shoppers to buy more and spend more time in the store.

How the brain reads music: the evidence for musical dyslexia

While there are exceptions to every rule, study after study shows that Christmas music really CAN make people feel happier and even lower stress. Dr. Bea says one aspect of Christmas music that most people will agree on is that certain songs that get overplayed can get on our nerves. When something is played too much, even if we used to like it, it can really irritate us after a while. Music has the ability to inspire, Buchanan says, because it helps release feel-good hormones, such as dopamine and oxytocin.

“You simply are spending all your energy trying not to hear what you’re hearing,” she told the UK media outlet Sky News, in reference to drops of productivity for holiday retail workers forced to head the same songs on repeat. Instead of making you feel happy and jolly, Christmas music often serves as a sort of opening bell to bring in the Holiday Season. These Christmas songs actually make the brain begin a countdown clock to December 25th, reminding us of all about the things that are pending and causing anxiety and stress in our minds. There is no doubt that all of us have a huge list of works lined up that we need to complete maximum by Christmas Eve, December 24th. Loud Christmas music often triggers thoughts of how many people we still need to buy presents for, what we need to do to plan the Christmas party, traveling, meeting relatives, etc.

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