mental health Mandy Kloppers

Cameraphobia: Are You Afraid Of Photos?

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Cameraphobia (or ‘camera shyness’ as it’s more commonly known) is the fear of having one’s photo taken. While there are many reasons as to why someone can have this fear, cameraphobia often comes down to being too self-conscious of one’s appearance, especially while taking corporate and professional headshots.

 If you have this phobia, it’s likely that you shy away from photo opportunities. You may even refuse to look at photos of yourself taken by others. 

Of course, in this modern world of smartphone cameras and social media, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to escape getting photographed and looking at photographs of yourself. This is why it’s important to fight this phobia. 

Face your fear

Exposure therapy is key to beating any phobia. The same goes for getting your photograph taken. Part of the reason your photos may always end up coming out unappealing could be because you look anxious. Only by getting  more comfortable around cameras will you start to look more natural and relaxed in your pictures.

The best way to get used to having your photo taken is to take selfies. This can be a chance to get used to your face, to practise poses and to…

Find your best angle

The truth is that we all look better from certain angles. Those who love having their photograph taken often know which angles are the most flattering for them and are then able to adopt a certain pose in photos to make sure they always look their best.

Consider taking photos of yourself from different angles to find your best angles. You can also practise posing in front of a mirror, although you should bear in mind that your reflection is a mirror image to what will be seen in photos. 

Accept your flaws

Cameraphobia can often come down to body image issues. You may not like certain parts of your body – and photos taken from certain angles may only serve to accentuate these parts of your body.

Aside from disguising flaws by finding the right angles and poses, it may be possible to improve your physical appearance through treatments. For example, if you don’t like your smile because of your crowded teeth, you may be able to look into treatments like aligners of braces. 

Of course, not everyone can afford these cosmetic treatments. Some cosmetic treatments like going under the knife could also be invasive or painful. And for those that do undergo these treatments, there’s no guarantee that they will satisfy the way you see yourself – quite often cosmetic treatments are addictive and people never quite achieve a look that they’re happy with.

So what is the solution if you cannot fix a flaw? Simply, to learn to accept it. Everyone has physical flaws, and while some people may have more prominent flaws, such flaws can ultimately help identify you.

Why so serious?

Many of us take photos too seriously. We go to great lengths to make ourselves look attractive at all times, when in truth none of us look perfect 24/7

Instead of avoiding photos in fear of not looking attractive, why not deliberately try to look silly or ridiculous by pulling a funny face or posing in a crazy way? The result may not be sexy, but you will come across as a fun person. Taking photos less seriously and not trying to look attractive could ultimately help you to see photos as a way of having fun rather than a source of embarrassment.

Pexels. CCO Licensed.

Mandy Kloppers
Author: Mandy Kloppers

Mandy is a qualified therapist who treats depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD, trauma, and many other types of mental health issues. She provides online therapy around the world for those needing support and also provides relationship counselling.