Go Ahead and Take That Selfie — It Might Just Make You Happier

Kim Kardashian
A new study published in 'Psychology of Well-Being' says that taking selfies can actually make you a happier person (just ask Kim Kardashian and Chrissy Teigen). Lester Cohen/WireImage

But first … yes, take that selfie! According to a new study published in Psychology of Well-Being, regularly snapping photos — including selfies — can help you cope with stress and, ultimately, make you a happier person.

Researchers at the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences asked 41 students from the University of California, Irvine, to participate in their study. The students were divided into three groups, each one asked to take a unique series of photos: daily selfies while smiling; snaps of something that made them happy; or pics of something they thought would make someone else happy, which they then would share with the person in mind.

The results? Everyone reported increased positive moods. The selfie group said they felt more confident and comfortable. The students taking pictures of things that made them happy reported feeling more reflective and appreciative. And those taking pics inspired by other people said that the practice helped them feel more connected to their family and friends.

Sasha and Malia Obama
Sasha and Malia Obama take a selfie during the Presidential Inaugural Parade on Jan. 21, 2013. JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty

"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,” lead author Yu Chen, a postdoctoral scholar in UCI's Department of Informatics, told UCI News.

Chen added that this is "particularly useful information for returning college students," as they're encountering many new sources of pressure, including the stress of financial independence, their academic studies and being away from home.

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