IRVINE (CBSLA.com) — Taking selfies and sharing them with friends can help make you a happier person, according to a new study at the University of California, Irvine.
Yu Chen is the lead author of the study and a postdoctoral scholar in UCI’s Department of Informatics.
She said smartphones can be used for stress relief and taking and sharing certain types of images can help students fight the blues.
“Our research showed that practicing exercises that can promote happiness via smartphone picture taking and sharing can lead to increased positive feelings for those who engage in it,” Chen told UCI News. “This is particularly useful information for returning college students to be aware of, since they face many sources of pressure.”
Chen and her colleagues spent four weeks studying 41 college students – 28 females and 13 males.
She said the goal of the study was to help understand the effects of photo taking on three areas: “self-perception, in which people manipulated positive facial expressions; self-efficacy, in which they did things to make themselves happy; and pro-social, in which people did things to make others happy,” according to UCI News.
The findings were published in the Psychology of Well-Being.