From the beach to the sunset: on vacation we capture impressive moments. Beautiful pictures make us happy in the moment – but photos can do more: there are three good reasons to look at them more often later on.
Admittedly: Constantly running around on vacation with your smartphone in front of your face to take selfies in front of sights has nothing to do with mindful photography. But in principle, there’s nothing wrong with taking a lot of vacation photos, which capture the happiness of beautiful moments. On the contrary: Looking at beautiful pictures later, for example in a photo book from dm, actually brings you concrete benefits.
However, a dm survey shows: Very few people do this. 70 percent store their pictures exclusively digitally. Only 17 percent have their pictures developed and put them in albums. And 14 percent create photo books. Pity! Because how often do you look at pictures on your computer? And how much more pleasant it is, on the other hand, to take an album from the shelf and wallow in memories?
Which is why beautiful pictures are so important:
Reason 1: Photos make you happy
An experiment conducted by the University of Southern California (USA) has shown: Taking pictures makes us perceive beautiful moments even more positively. For the study, half of the participants had to take pictures on a sightseeing tour, while the other half did not. The result: the participants perceived situations more intensively when they pressed the shutter release button of the camera. This means that photos can make us happy twice: once while taking them and a second (and always reproducible) time when we look at the photos from the vacation/our wedding/family event.
So beautiful pictures make happy. Why is that? Because we usually press the shutter when it’s just particularly unique. We capture these unique moments in the pictures. When we look at these memories, we immediately recall this pleasant feeling. "It may be this feeling of being allowed to relax, being detached from everyday life or the intimacy with my partner or children," says Munich-based psychotherapist Andrea Tretner, who offers phototherapy in her practice for systemic couples therapy.
Reason 2: Photos make you more decisive
But beautiful pictures have much more power than "just" evoking beautiful memories and feelings – and thus making us happy. Photos can evoke desires for change and give the final, still missing impulse to take the first steps in the desired direction. An example: the image of a beautiful landscape can awaken a longing that is rekindled by it. "Basically, we look through the lens with a different view of things. Between us and the world, we hold the camera in our hands," says Tretner.
Reason 3: Beautiful pictures help your relationship
The couples therapist also uses phototherapy in her work with couples. In exercises, couples should describe events or stages that were important to them in the relationship. Each of them does it separately, the other looks and listens. At home, the task is then to pick out the corresponding photos: for example beautiful pictures of the vacation, from the wedding or from the building of a house. The couple then looks at these together in the session.
"It is really surprising, which insights here on the opposite one are arranged again – with old photos, which are evaluated again, regarded with other eyes or perhaps seen for the first time , say the Expertin. Also, the partner’s explanation of having chosen a particular image, plus the emotional description let both partners look at the relationship anew. "Often such a photo work moves again the view on the substantial, which is often in the pair conflict no more in the focus."