Psychologist Walter Mischel's famous study of instant gratification presented its child test subjects with two choices: They could take a single marshmallow right now, or wait upwards of 20 minutes, after which time they would receive two marshmallows. I can't help but wonder if Mischel could have saved a lot of time and effort by, instead, studying the amount of people who eat their advent calendar chocolate long before 25th December rolls around.
For some people, the advent calendar is a staple of the holiday season — a nice reminder that the holiday are just around the corner. (If you're the kind of person who puts up Christmas decorations the second Halloween is over, well, maybe you don't need such a reminder.) Many advent calendars provide a little treat in order to check off the days leading up to Christmas, and often, this includes a tiny piece of chocolate.
"Why is eating all your advent calendar chocolate on the 1st day even frowned upon?" pondered one Twitter user.
Another didn't think it was even a question that people waited:
"Time to start eating your advent calendars hahahah just kidding you already ate all 25 pieces didn’t you that’s ok"
"Self control is not eating all the chocolate in your advent calendar," wrote another. "Good thing I don't have any self control because the chocolate was delicious."
Self control is not eating all the chocolate in your advent calendar. Good thing I don't have anyself control because the chocolate was delicious 😈— ☃❄️ Snow Kitty ❄️☃ (@xxkillkittyxx) December 1, 2017
However, not everyone was onboard for the chocolate spree:
"Biggest crime of all at this time of year is eating the rest of your advent calendar before the dates come around #closeone."
One likened the ritual to a sign of true adulting:
"A true sign of maturity is taking your advent calendar one day at a time, instead of eating it all at once."
Other people have strategised so that they can have it both ways:
"Saving up your advent calendar chocolates for five days and then eating them all at once is a solid plan."
"Missing a few days on your advent calendar then eating them all at once is what dreams are made of."
If the chocolate debate seems just a touch overwhelming, may I suggest this Harry Potter-themed sock calendar instead? You can only wear a pair a day, after all.