How Photography Can Relieve Your Stress

Photo with the Sun

By: Rebecca Robinson

As busy professionals living fast-paced lives, we often forget to stop and smell the roses. But what if you took another step and photographed its beauty? Capturing a small moment provides the opportunity to step away from work or stress and enjoy the small, beautiful things that life has to offer.  Having an outlet or hobby can bring much needed relaxation. Consider trying photography as a new hobby! Photography can be a wonderful form of self-expression that can help improve creativity and focus your attention on something positive. Here are a few of the benefits that photography provides!

It encourages a flow state

Mihály Csíkszentmihályi, a positive psychologist, explains that being in a flow state is being completely involved and immersed in whatever you’re doing. This state normally occurs when you do something you love. Creative hobbies like photography are great for that flow state. Before you know it, you’ll be fully immersed in wanting to capture precious moments and trying to get the perfect shot. So how does this help you relax? Well, being in a flow state helps you better regulate your emotions and ease pressure from external factors. Plus, during this time, you enjoy the activity you’re doing even more, so you also find it more rewarding and fulfilling.

It shows you another perspective

Photos can remind you that the world is much bigger than the problems you’re dealing with. Additionally, it can be a source of comfort during challenges. Being in a tough spot may prevent you from seeing silver linings making it hard to focus. But photography teaches you to reframe your situation. In photography, you experiment with different angles and techniques to achieve a photo that appeals to you. Our Habitat Home mentions how changing your perspective can help you feel less overwhelmed by your to-do list, for example. Imagine you’re looking at your life through a viewfinder. What things would stand out to you most? Find them, then use that to help you focus on what matters.

It lets you document happy memories

Whether you’re looking at a simple photo of your friends or a beautiful shot of your childhood home, all these symbolize happy memories. They provide you with a source of comfort when you need it. Elemental discusses how recalling happy moments when you’re feeling down or stressed inspires positivity and feelings of gratitude.

It allows you to connect with fellow creatives

The beautiful thing about having a hobby or interest is there are like-minded people out there you can connect with. Mayo Clinic talks about how a sense of belongingness is important as it acts as a protective factor that can help manage stress. For your photography hobby, having a community means you can also find mentors who you can ask advice from. You can even go on photo walks together! For starters, there are many forums online where you can start posting your work or asking for tips, such as DPReview and Photography on the Net.

Getting started with photography

Photography is a hobby that is quite easy to get into. There are many resources online nowadays, such as Alister Benn’s introduction to night photography and Photography Life’s photography guide to the basics. If you’re worried about photography being expensive, it’s important to understand that you don’t need the most expensive camera to get started. Adorama, lists dozens of beginner-friendly cameras that are capable of taking amazing photos. If you can’t invest in a camera yet, you can still start your hobby with a smartphone because many modern phone cameras can produce high-quality photos.

Photography is a stress reliever you can do if you have some time to spare. Consider trying it out and capture the moment!

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