Would You Rather Upload a Photo, or Enjoy a Moment?
Do we, as a world, need this reminder to put down the iPhone and enjoy life again?
While life is about making the most of every moment-- especially the most precious ones-- many of us get so caught up in capturing them for the world to see that we forget to fully embrace and enjoy it ourselves. In which case, we lose out. Looking back, how many times do you say, "I just need to take a picture of this and share it on Instagram!" per day?
Sucked in by social media
Maybe your vice is Facebook, or perhaps it's Twitter. Whatever it may be, we're all guilty of sabotaging ourselves with the need to share on social media, when we could be really truly living, enjoying the most of each moment as it should be. Could capturing moments be ruining them inadvertently? So it seems.
While this is not to say, "Never take a picture again; you're ruining your life," it's meant to challenge you to take the picture and be done with it. Put the phone away, or the camera, and truly place yourself in the present moment. Enjoy it. Make the most of it. Tell your friends about it later if you must, but while in the moment-- be in the moment instead of so caught up in capturing it that you miss out on the experience yourself.
The Journal of Psychological Science concurs
As the results of a recent study were published in the journal, Psychological Science, the act of taking photos may actually affect memory. It is said to diminish what we remember about the image, place or moment, that was photographed.
"People just pull out their cameras," said Linda Henkel, study author at Fairfield University in Connecticut. "They just don't pay attention to what they're even looking at, like just capturing the photo is more important than actually being there."
Henkel later went on to say, "When we distract ourselves and count on the camera to remember for us, then we don't remember as many objects. We don't remember as many details."
Zoom if you wish to
Those who cannot fathom the thought of letting go of their camera can get away with it without memory loss by zooming in. The study showed that those who "zoom" to focus on fine details and features of things, people, or moments, will remember them much more than those who just sporadically snap photos of their surroundings without much direction or dictation.
And more than that, zooming in on something will help you to remember the entire thing, rather than just the part or feature of which you focused in on.
People took more than three billion photos in the year of 2012, and 300 million photos are uploaded to Facebook daily. Perhaps if we learn to let go of the technology and rely on truly making memories rather than capturing them, we'll lead more fulfilled lives, with higher rates of happiness and satisfaction.