A recent study, collated by the World Happiness Database, suggests that we can make ourselves happier.
Since my aim at Narshada Photography is to make my clients happier, I thought I’d share this excellent piece of news and give you some tips on how to improve your overall happiness.
If you haven’t read the article, here’s a selection of things it says can improve your happiness levels:
- Be Active! Not just physically but also in the sense of getting involved with things; whether it’s politics a local interest group or volunteering some time for a good cause – be a participant.
- Go out for dinner! Also, people who drink in moderation tend to be happier than those who don’t drink, so have a glass or two of wine while you’re there. (Yay!)
- Have close friendships. The study does say that happiness doesn’t increase proportionally with the number of friends, so ideally a handful of close friendships may be better than being a social butterfly.
- Watch out for that commute! The study showed that people who commute for an hour or more were significantly less happy than people with shorter, or no commute. If you commute by train, read a book or play a game or find something interesting to do. (I recently wrote a short story on Twitter during an hour’s train delay, which helped pass the time and gave me a couple of chuckles!)
One other interesting finding was that you tend to be happier if you think you’re good looking, rather than if you actually, objectively speaking, are …
Which I found particularly interesting – Think back to a time when you felt you looked good: Did you feel happy? (I know I did.)
Feeling that you look good can have several effects – According to the study it can make you happier, but it can also make you feel more confident. In feeling more confident, you feel better able to handle anything the day throws at you. This can lead to another psychological phenomenon; The Halo Effect. The Halo Effect means that other people may view you with a positive bias, based on your attractiveness. Basically, if you look good, other people are more likely to view you as confident, kind or more intelligent.
So the better you look, the better you feel and also, the better people will perceive you.
But what about days where the mirror doesn’t seem to love you as much?
Here’s a simple trick for combatting days where you don’t feel you look as great:
Have a professionally taken portrait hanging by your door.
Why? Well, if the mirror hasn’t been kind that day and that’s the last thing you see before you leave the house, you might not start the day feeling great. But if you place a great photo of you looking sensational somewhere between the mirror and the door – you’ll look at it and be reminded of how great you looked and that’s enough to flip the switch in your head, because remember, It’s about how you feel you look, not how you actually look. If the last thing you see before you leave the house every day is a photo of yourself when you looked amazing, your overall happiness levels will improve, over time. How amazing is that?
This also works when you come home after a long day. You see yourself looking great and it makes you smile – and did you know the simple act of smiling can make you feel happier too?
Finally, think back to the Halo Effect I mentioned earlier.
Here’s a scenario: You have a visitor over. Maybe a romantic interest, maybe just a friend. The first thing they see when they walk through your door is your fantastic portrait, with you looking amazing. What happens? They, without being aware of it, start viewing you with a positive bias:
“Wow, you look great in that photo!” They say.
“Thanks!” you say, and smile.
Your attractiveness levels just went up. They now view you more positively and you are in a better position to create or sustain those meaningful relationships that can – guess what? Increase your happiness levels again.
All from one great photo!
Look at these: (Click for full size images)
Do you think you could leave your house in the morning without smiling after seeing how great you look? These photos make me smile and I’m not even in them!
So when you’re ready to look great and have that moment captured so you can feel great looking at it, go get yourself a professionally taken portrait, hang it in your home and start to feel happier. It doesn’t have to be with me, but if you’re in the Cambridgeshire area, I’d love to talk to you about how I can make you happier. Just fill in the form below and I’ll be in touch. (If you live outside Cambridgeshire, I’d still love to hear from you!)
Even having your photo taken can be fun – making you happy during the process too!
Here’s what some of my clients have said about their experiences:
“I recently had a photoshoot with Narshada Photography and I had a blast.
I love the photos and the whole experience!” – Tia Colcomb (Blue dress, top left)
“Thank you so much Mike these are fantastic!
If anybody would like a photographer I can highly recommend Mike.
It was such a fun and easy day and I will cherish these photos forever.” – Jayne Fuller (Sawing maternity shoot, above centre left)
“The photos are super!
We love the ones where you have caught real expressions that capture just how we were feeling.” – Kate Davison (Bride, above centre,)
Ready to be happier? Just fill in your details below and I’ll be in touch shortly, or call Mike on 07837858390.