There is a saying “Money can’t buy happiness”. I’m sure you all heard it, right?
Lots of people disagree with this. Others think it’s partially true, as with money you can buy some of the things that make you happy. Well, of course, truly poor people could be happier with money as they don’t have to worry about food or a place to live. However, apart from that exception, more money does not result in significantly more happiness.
The reality is that happiness often comes from within you.
Of course, happiness means different things to everyone. But researches show that there are some common things that make people feel happy. For example:
- spending time with friends and family.
- doing regular acts of kindness (even the smallest thing like holding the door for someone else.)
- surrounding ourselves with positive people (encase happiness is contagious!)
- exercising (when people get up and move, even a little, they tend to be happier than when they are still – think about dancing! That makes everyone feel happy.)
- practising gratitude (people are proven to be healthier, more energetic, less stressed and anxious and get better sleep)
- spending time in nature, outdoors.
- spending money on experiences rather than things (we remember experiences for a longer period of time and our brains can re-live them, making our positive emotions last longer.)
So why Photos Can Boost Your Happiness?
Happiness is contagious! When we see someone laughing, even if we don’t know why, it’s very likely we throw a smile too! I’m sure you all have laughed at videos of babies laughing for example. It’s catchy, right?
Photos are such a joy and when we surround our home with photos of our family and happy moments it can only result in happiness. And I’m not just saying that because I’m a photographer.
Here are the 3 Reasons Why Photos Can Boost Your Happiness
1. Displaying photos of our family members make us proud and happy.
Our home is one of the places where happiness lives for most of us and when we set up the right environment, we can definitely feel the positive vibes. Photos remind us of the people we love, places we’ve been, actives we enjoy. Lots of people like to have photos in their offices or in their wallets. Because every time we look at our loved ones, we feel grateful and happy. Plus raising children in a house with their photos on the wall helps them with their self-esteem. And an adult with decent self-esteem is happier and more confident. I always encourage my clients to display on the wall the photos from their photoshoots and that’s why I offer different types of products.
2. Photos help us remember the past.
A few days ago, on the International day of Happiness (20th March), I did a poll on my Instagram stories. I asked, “Do you think photos remind you of happy times?” And you can read the result in the screenshot here.
One of the best and quickest ways to make yourself happy in the present is to recall happy times from the past. And what better way than looking through photos? We tend to photograph happy moments so photos are undoubtedly an excellent memory prompt for happiness.
3. Taking photographs can act as a diary.
Journaling is a proven tool to boost your mood and can give you a sense of well-being and happiness. They say to write down things you are grateful for, set your intention and write about how you feel. I mentioned at the start how practising gratitude is actually a happiness tool.
But in a diary or journal, you keep hold of your memories. That’s why you write them down. Photos are such a great visual of that moment. A moment that could be easily forgotten. A journal could be just a collection of photos. With no words needed, because a photo has already written it all. Like that early morning walk with your dog when everything is still quiet. Or that coffee in the new cafe’ in town. A photo will not only remind you of that moment but also of what happened before or after. And the visual is much quicker than reading the written story, which will surely miss some details. And often is in those details that the happy memory lies.
With the phone, today is so easy to do it. Take photos every day. Not just the special occasions. Take a photo of your jog, your walk. Take a photo during your lunch break, maybe you’re going to a street market. Or your office. Who knows if in 30 years they will both still be there. In the future, everyone might work from home and you will want to show your kids how was your daily life. Take a photo of something that catches your attention on the street. Start your little photo diary, maybe for a month and see how it makes you feel at the end of it. You can do that very easily on Instagram for example.
So do you see now why photos, among other things, can improve your happiness?
I’ll be curious to hear your thoughts. Let me know in the comments.