What’s the first things people lament when a house burns down or a storm destroys their home? The photos. Those memories and moments captured in time are held so dearly by us that it can be devastating to lose them. It’s funny though to think that only a hundred and fifty years or so ago family photos weren’t even a consideration as photography was only in its infancy. Expensive portraits were commissioned only by the wealthy and the more modestly prices silhouette profile portraits were hardly a detailed representation of the person’s face at that moment.
Up until very recently, relatively speaking, we didn’t have pictures of our past to get all nostalgic over, nor could we see images of loved ones who’ve passed away. Today, however, we can and we do!
I was looking at a number of old photos yesterday and a few things occurred to me. It is my belief that looking at old pictures can bring us peace, contentment and happiness in a number of ways. Let’s take a look:
1 – The Future: All of us, to some degree or other, bear a fear of the future. If you’re very lucky you will be the kind of person who hardly thinks about it, and only becomes anxious of the future when there is some pending event. Some of us, however, are quite terrified about what is to come. The old photos remind us that the future is going to happen no matter what, that we really have no idea what it’s going to bring (both good and bad) and that there’s really no point fretting about it. Look back ten or twenty years and think about the things you were anxious about, did it really have any bearing on hows things actually turned out? Life has a way of keeping us always on the edge of our seats and so I laugh at my fears from back then. And knowing this, I laugh at my fears today, because one day I’ll be looking back and laughing anyway!
2 – You Were Happy: Sometimes when we are in a slump, whether we’re going through a difficult period financially, we’ve recently lost someone to death or a breakup, or we suffer from periods of depression or nervous disorder, it can feel as though we’ve never been happy, nor could we ever be again. The old photos beg to differ. Quite often you’ll find pictures of smiling faces, or celebrations, of times when money and love were abundant. This proves that moments of happiness were had and indeed that they can, and will come again. Old photos remind us that life goes up and down like a roller-coaster; the good times will be back again eventually.
3 – Past Problems: Think back to the worries and problems you would have had in some of the old pictures. Are they still terrifying? Or does it make you laugh when you think about how much you worried over something that really didn’t matter in the long run? Now think about everything you’re worried about now; the problems you currently face in your life. Those too will one day be nothing more than a funny memory. You will get through them, just like you did back then!
4 – Today’s Photos: Celebrating a birthday soon? Going on a holiday? Or just taking some snaps? The photos we take today, tomorrow and in the near future will one day be looked back upon with the same fondness and nostalgia as those old pictures. Even though it can be hard to appreciate at the time, know that right now there is a lot of good in your life. People who care about you, locations that are special to you, music that makes you feel great and projects and responsibilities that satisfy you.
The beautiful thing about the old photos is the sense of safety and certainty that they convey. We know what happened to all the people in the photo after it was taken, and no matter what, that picture will stay frozen forever. The present however is filled with trepidation and uncertainty, this is what makes it exciting! But don’t let that obscure the joy, the love and the fun that is available to you right now. One day you’ll be looking back and laughing, so why not start laughing now
Thanks for reading, all the best!
- How to Overcome Panic Attacks Once And For All!
- Stress Reduction: Close Your Eyes and Visualize!
- Easiest Way to Frustrate Yourself, and How To Stop Doing it!
- How To Achieve Long Term Goals – The 5 Year Plan!
- How To Meditate For Deep Relaxation!
Rohan Healy is the author of “Greeks to Geeks: Practical Stoicism in the 21st Century”, “The 7 Things That Made Me Genuinely & Irreversibly Happy: And How They Can Do The Same For You”, “SEX, Not as a Separate Subject: A Guide to Great Sex with Great People” and Sci Fi Action/Adventure novel Gyaros: The Mice Eat Iron!
Click the book titles to visit their Amazon pages, read the reviews, and sample or purchase the books.