Point, shoot. Snap, click.
I love pictures. I take hundreds if not thousands of them. I even pay for cloud storage so they can automatically upload themselves from my devices. Yet, in my desire to capture the moment, I have come to realize how often I unconsciously cut short the magic of the moment itself in order to snap a picture, or two or five…
While in Costa Rica, the irony of pictures really struck me. In wanting to create a memory for my future self to look back on, I actually step out of glory of the present moment. Funny, yet true.
This habit is even more apparent when I travel. I see tourists exert incredible effort or expense to arrive at a prime spot, pose for the perfect shot, to then leave immediately afterwards. It’s as if obtaining picture proof became the primary goal over the enjoyment of the experience itself.
Could it be that in our hyper-connected culture, the quest for likes has distracted us from living fully in every moment? Is instant gratification now all about achieving the ultimate great pic for others to acknowledge? Luckily no, we can all consciously take actions to keep this tendency at bay and strive for balance.
So the next time you are at an awesome place, I invite you to kick it old school and take some mental pictures. Savour the moment through your five senses. Taste the air, feel the sensation of the sun on your skin, hold your loved one tight. All without being in front of or behind a lens.
And then leave with the memory of it all captured in your mind.
…but if this sounds a little extreme, here are some baby steps for a happy medium.
First, savour the moment wholeheartedly, then create your digital memories after. Since most of our favourite memories are driven by emotions, taking the time to cherish the greatness of the experience will increase the quality of your pictures when you look back at them in the future.
So cheers to us living fully in each moment. And cheers to us capturing it on camera after experiencing the glorious emotions generated by being fully present.
And with this awareness, cheers to us snapping to our heart’s content.