The psychology in Halloween

. 2 min read

I find psychology in everything - you may have already noticed this - from movies to children's books to everyday life. So when I remembered the end of October is approaching (autumn has passed unbelievably fast!), I just had to analyze Halloween. Quite conveniently too, since it's today. (I also hear there's a new movie called Halloween, but let's not go there.)

All Hallow's Eve means different things to different people. Depending on your nationality, it could mean trick-or-treating the neighborhood, carving pumpkins, a harvest fest, or celebrating death. Most people, however, dress up somehow - be it as a mummy or a vampire or a zombie or a witch - anything you like.

The point is that on Halloween, you get to be anyone you want to be.

Okay, so So if you got an invitation to an adult Halloween party, how would you dress? Would you go for the easy and obvious costumes, like a pirate or Dracula or cat or a mermaid - like everyone else - or would you dress up as your ideal self?

I know Halloween isn't usually about personal development and thinking about your life goals and such. It's usually just about booze and gross decor, maybe even throw a Tim Burton movie somewhere in there. But I once heard that people who dress up as the person they want to be in five or ten years' time, down to the tiniest detail, will become that person. How cool is that?

The psychology behind the effect is quite straightforward - you see yourself in the mirror looking like that and snap, your subconscious thinks you are that person, thus making you act more and more like it. Five or ten years later, it's you alright. No italics.

Want to become a writer? Show up carrying your published novels (with mockup covers) and a typewriter. Want to become a professor? Wear a beige blazer and point at things with a laser. Want to become an archaeologist? Wear a whip and a cowboy hat the appropriate outfit and bring bones and excavation equipment. It will send a powerful sign to your subconscious.

Happy Halloween!