Photography heightens enjoyment of positive experiences by increasing engagement
Washington, Jun 17: You may want to start photographing your experiences as a recent study has found that every click brings you closer to happy times.
The research suggested that people who take photos of their experiences usually enjoy the events more than people who don’t.
“To the best of our knowledge, this research is the first extensive investigation examining how taking photos affects people’s enjoyment of their experiences,” wrote Kristin Diehl of the University of Southern California, Gal Zauberman of Yale University and Alixandra Barasch of the University of Pennsylvania.
They added, “We show that, relative to not taking photos, photography can heighten enjoyment of positive experiences by increasing engagement.”
In the study, Diehl and her colleagues outline a series of nine experiments involving over 2,000 participants in the field and the lab designed to examine the effect of taking photographs of an experience on people’s enjoyment of an activity.
While people might think that stopping to take photographs would detract from the whole experience and make it less pleasurable, participants who took photos reported being more engaged in the activity, according to the study.
“One critical factor that has been shown to affect enjoyment is the extent to which people are engaged with the experience,” the authors wrote. Photo-taking naturally draws people more into the experience, they found.
While photo-taking can increase enjoyment in many circumstances, this effect requires active participation, according to the researchers. Cameras that record any moment of an experience without the individual’s active decision of what to capture are unlikely to have the same effect, they said.
The study is published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.