Take a photo a day to boost your mental health
A healthy habit
Photography has become an integral part of our lives, whether as a hobby or an obsession. And according to one study, this practice has a very positive impact on our health. In fact, taking a photo a day has been shown to have beneficial effects on our well-being.
The study, entitled “Daily digital practice as a form of self-care: using photography for daily well-being”, published in the journal Health, examined the habits and feelings of 33 participants who committed to taking and sharing a photo every day.
Led by Andrew Cox of the University of Sheffield and Liz Brewster of Lancaster University, the research revealed that this habit helped generate structure and routine in participants who were not used to having a structured life. Some participants even testified that it encouraged them to get out of the house and explore new places.
One interviewee explained, “Sometimes it encourages me to get out of the house when I could just sit with a cup of tea. Sometimes I tell myself I'm going for a walk along the promenade and before I know it, I'm three kilometers from the coast. It's something I might not do if I didn't have a goal.”
The sensation of walking around with a camera and photographing the world has also been compared to owning a dog. “When I go for a walk, I like to have an object in mind and I always have the camera. It's like having a dog, you know, you don't look weird if you're carrying a camera or a dog,” added one participant.
The dictatorship of the “like
In addition to the creative aspect and the pleasure of taking photos, this study also highlighted the social impact of photography. Sharing photos creates a sense of community and connection. However, it's important not to let the desire for “likes” get the better of you.
Likes have been shown to function as an operant conditioning chamber, where our behavior is conditioned by the social reward represented by the number of likes. Studies have shown that people with low self-esteem or social status place greater importance on social networking responses such as likes and followers.
So it's essential to remember that the value of our photos lies not in the number of “likes” they receive, but in the personal memories they represent.
Another reason why we are inclined to take photos is to immortalize memories. Photos allow us to relive precious moments and retrace our life's history. However, taking too many photos can have a negative impact on our ability to remember.
According to studies, taking too many photos can reduce the brain's ability to retain memories. By relying on photography to remember for us, we “externalize” our memory. As a result, we don't pay as much attention to the present moment, as we rely on our camera to capture the moment for us.
Researchers therefore stress the importance of striking a balance between immortalizing memories through photography and directly experiencing the present moment. It's essential to take full advantage of moments without being distracted by the constant search for the perfect photo.
I'm Thomas, passionate editor at services-conseils.fr. My area of expertise is technology and the web, where I devote my time and energy to unearthing the latest news and trends. My aim is to share my knowledge and discoveries with our readers, who are eager to learn more about these constantly evolving fields.