People Who Can't Wrap Christmas Presents Bring More Joy, Study Says
As we get closer to Christmas, you'll find that people can be divided into two categories: those that can wrap and those that cannot.
You can certainly learn how to get better but some people, despite their best efforts, simply cannot manage to get the right amount of paper around their gift and then fold it in the right places to create a lovely looking present.
But it seems like these people still manage to do some good - a study has discovered that bad present wrappers bring more joy than those who make their gifts look slick.
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The study is called 'Presentation Matters: The Effect of Wrapping Neatness on Gift Attitudes' and it asked a bunch of people what they felt when they were presented with different wrapped gifts. Interestingly, researchers discovered that the badly wrapped ones were more endearing.
So if you set the bar really, extraordinarily, unashamedly low then even showing up with a gift with some sticky tape will make the recipient go, 'Awww, well at least you tried.'
The perfectly done ones still inspired nice feelings but if you have a reputation for nicely wrapped gifts then the expectation is much higher.
The authors of the study, Jessica M. Rixom, Erick M. Mas and Brett A. Rixom, wrote: "While gift‐givers typically wrap gifts prior to presenting them, little is known about the effect of how the gift is wrapped on recipients' expectations and attitudes toward the gift inside.
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"We propose that when recipients open a gift from a friend, they like it less when the giver has wrapped it neatly as opposed to sloppily and we draw on expectation disconfirmation theory to explain the effect.
"Specifically, recipients set higher (lower) expectations for neatly (sloppily)‐wrapped gifts, making it harder (easier) for the gifts to meet these expectations, resulting in contrast effects that lead to less (more) positive attitudes toward the gifts once unwrapped."
Even more interestingly, those results are based on a scenario where the two people giving and receiving the gift are friends.
When it changes to mere acquaintances, the person actually likes the gift more if it's nicely wrapped.
So maybe pay a little extra at the store if you're planning on getting people from work a little gift. But if you're just friends then know you'll spreading happiness during the festive season if your present looks like it was wrapped by a baby.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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