The generation of the #selfie obsession. No need for me to explain what a selfie is because I know, some of you may try to deny it, but I know for a fact that all of you have taken a selfie and therefore know what one is!
We are all selfie obsessed, I mean people used to take photos of themselves on special occasions or when on holiday, or in front of landmarks, but today people are now taking pictures of themselves daily for absolutely no reason at all apart from something to post on social media sites and with the help of the over improving front cameras on our phones and of course the infamous selfie-stick, taking the perfect selfie has never been easier! But this is not necessarily a good thing… are selfies just a harmless way of showing empowerment and body confidence on social media or, as a society should we be worried about this obsession? I mean there are even thousands of YouTube videos telling you how to take and edit the perfect selfie! Take a look…
Its possible that selfies could be a sign of increased self-esteem, and maybe this trend it encouraging us to all love ourselves as much as Kim K and the rest of the Kardashian clan does. So on the surface it seems like a good thing, our selfie obsession is simply a way of showing how confident and secure we are with ourselves, right?
Let me talk to you about narcissism. For those of you who don’t know what this is, it is described as ‘extreme selfishness, with a pretentious view of yourself and a craving for admiration.’ Now this is slightly worrying…studies suggest that the mental disorder of narcissism is becoming more widespread throughout our generation due to the introduction of phones and social media allowing us to instantly upload images of ourselves. It all begins with taking innocent selfies, which becomes more and more frequent tuning into a bad selfie taking habit and looking more deeply into the issue, it would suggest that this habit is a result of people feeling bad about themselves. However the scary thing is this habit very rapidly can turn into a full-blown obsession, fuelled by a narcissistic person.
I can’t tell you how many selfies I have seen of people on Facebook and Instagram etc, mostly from girls may I add, and this is usually because it is girls are more self-obsessed and self-conscious. So when girls are posting these mirror selfies of them in their ‘new bikini’ what is this picture really of? Psychologists say that this type of behaviour is a blatant case of attention seeking and an attempt to gain reassurance of her appearance, aiming to feed their own egos and this is then clarified by the number of likes they receive.
Now don’t deny it, we are all guilty of a selfie now and then. As a frequent Instagram user, I have posted the odd selfie or two, but I would like to say that I’m not obsessed! Anyway, as I was saying posting the odd selfie can actually be a scary experience, after taking what I think is a good image I will then fall victim to critically analysing every aspect of myself, often picking on many of my flaws. Once I pluck up the courage to post it, it is a tense time waiting for any likes to come in. Its very sad isn’t it, but for someone like me who is self-conscious and has low self-esteem, those likes give me a little self-confidence boost. But this is so wrong and this can turn negative very quickly as it has been proven that selfies are strongly related to mental disorders such as depression, anxiety and eating disorders because people are becoming so obsessed with looking perfect that they believe that they can no longer keep up.
Our generation should not be taking selfies and fishing for likes as an attempt to make us feel better about ourselves, and some cases of selfie obsession have taken it way too far…
P.s check out this article about a woman who’s selfie obsession is ruining all of her relationships!
Physical ideals are becoming more and more prominent because of our society’s selfie obsession and because more and more social media users are posting unrealistic highly edited selfies, everyone is being left further and further away from their ideal self, resulting in very negative affects such as body dysmorphic disorder. The obsession isn’t actually with selfies alone; it is with the perfect pic. Instagrammers in particular are obsessed with taking the perfect picture with the help of perfect angles and lighting, airbrushing, photo-shoping, filters and effects all aimed as enhancing and emphasising their features and minimising any flaws, and the result of this is an overwhelming presence of unrealistic and fake people on social media, which for us normal people can have extreme effects where we struggle to see past the fakeness. It has resulted in a huge and worrying increase of plastic surgery where it seems almost every teenage girl wants to have parts of their natural body altered in order to make the cut on social media. Now that it worrying!
As a society this needs to change, young girls should not be resulting to wanting plastic surgery to feel accepted and good about themselves. The fake side of social media will never be removed, but we should try to look past this and recognise and celebrate natural beauty, instead of aspiring to unrealistic ideals of people we don’t even know! Take selfies for a reason, to create memories and not as an attempt to seek attention and validation of your looks.