As much as I know you all love looking at adorable photos of babies... I am so excited to share something different with you today, thanks to my beautiful friend and guest blogger, Cathleen Bearse from Self Care Bestie! Cathleen's goal in creating her blog is that everyone who visits will leave feeling refreshed, lighthearted, and loved. She believes that most people need help figuring out how to love the life they live, and she is here to help!
I asked Cathleen to share some thoughts on the psychological effects of displaying family photos in your home. As you know, I am a huge advocate of PRINTING those beautiful family portraits you spend so much time, effort, and money creating, and hanging them in your home so that you can enjoy them daily. Did you know that studies have shown that family portraits can actually boost a child's self esteem? Children are able to see themselves as a valued and important part of their family unit- learning who they are and how they fit. How awesome is that?! And it's not just kids who benefit from those prominently displayed family portraits. Read on as Cathleen talks about how family photos can increase happiness in your home!
And without further ado, here is your Self Care Bestie (pictured above with her gorgeous family!):
As a licensed clinical social worker, I have worked with people of all ages who struggle with all sorts of issues from anxiety and depression to marital issues, stress and trauma. But there's one thing all my clients have in common: they want to be happier.
I'm convinced if I had a "happy" button I could simply push on behalf of my clients, I would be a billionaire...well, either that or out of a job.
The thing many people don't realize is there are SO many ways to make our days and ultimately our lives happier. Yet a lot of people have trouble coming up with things they can do to add happiness to their everyday lives. Why? Most often it is because when asked to think of things that would make them happy, people typically reply with something along the lines of: "Moving to Hawaii and living on the beach" or "Quitting my job and buying a boat." I mean, those are great things to aspire to, but they do little to make us feel happier right now, today.
One of the ways I help people come up with ways to add joy to their everyday lives is to ask them questions like these:
When was the last time you laughed so hard you cried? When was the last time you felt completely relaxed? When was the last time your heart was filled with genuine joy? Who were you with?
Inevitably, people name those they are closest to: family and close friends. There's something amazing that comes alive in us when we are with people who really know us and really love us. And while spending quality time with our squad brings us immense happiness, we can also increase our joy simply by reflecting on special time with loved ones, or practicing gratitude for what they add to our lives. An easy way to do that? Surround yourself with photos of your nearest and dearest.
As a mom, I know all too well how fast the years pass (even if the days can seem pretty long...ahem, potty training and sleep training!). While it's great to have zillions of photos on your phone, if you really want to add happiness to your day, those photos need to be in a place you will actually see them. Even scrapbooks and photo albums can be great for this, but let's be honest...on the days you're just trying to make sure everyone has clean underwear on and their lunchbox makes it to school, you're going to be hard-pressed to find time to sit down and flip through those adorable baby books. Full disclosure: my kids are 6 and 4 and I have yet to make an actual baby book for either of them. But they are currently both wearing clean underwear. #winning
In the words of Ferris Bueller, "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." If you have photos of your family that are special to you, for goodness' sake, stop and look around at them once in a while. Better yet, if those photos are displayed on a beautiful gallery wall in your home, you don't even have to stop. Perfect for snow days like today, when your kids are chasing each other around the house in said underwear, shouting at the top of their lungs. On days like this, those beautifully displayed photos will do more than bring you happiness...they just might save a life, know what I mean?
Thanks again to Cathleen for sharing her thoughts and spreading the happiness! Check out her blog where you will find fun ideas for self care, and simply how to add more love and joy to your everyday life. And then be sure to contact me to schedule your next family photo session!