Nostalgia might have been regarded as a medical disease or psychiatric disorder in the past, but recent studies suggest that it can prove good for a person's psychological health.
Constantine Sedikides, a psychologist at the University of Southampton, has revealed that inducing nostalgia has been found to generate positive feelings in a group of people participating in a study.
AdvertisementHe says that being nostalgic appeared to give the participants higher self-esteem, and increase the feeling of being loved and protected by others.
The researcher adds that another recent finding is that nostalgia counteracts effects of loneliness by increasing perceptions of social support, and that loneliness itself can trigger it.
Writing about recent findings in the journal Current Directions in Psychological Science, he has also revealed that nostalgia may provide people with a positive view of the past, and thereby give them a greater sense of continuity and meaning to their lives.
Sedikides and his colleagues believe that nostalgia may also acquire greater significance in old age-elderly adults are especially vulnerable to social isolation and nostalgia may help them overcome feelings of loneliness.
"Nostalgia is now emerging as a fundamental human strength," write the authors.
"Nostalgia is uniquely positioned to offer integrative insights across such areas of psychology as memory, emotion, the self and relationships. Nostalgia has a long past and an exciting future," they conclude.