The Real Reason We Take #selfies
“But first, let me take a selfie,” The phenomenon of the one-on-one camera sesh known as a “selfie” bombards our everyday lives. Selfie was even named word of the year in 2013 by Oxford Dictionaries. Whether in music, speech, or your social media feeds, there is no doubt about it; selfies are everyone’s favorite way to document a moment these days.
But a research done by the University of Indiana shows that these shots cluttering the media world may actually enhance your self-esteem. “Because we have the time to choose how we present ourselves online, our presentations are a bit ‘better,’ ” explains co-author Amy Gonzales, Ph.D., an assistant professor at Indiana University. While the study was not targeted specifically at the selfie craze, its research on how we project ourselves on social media lends a great deal of information. Ellen Kenner, Ph.D., a psychologist in Rhode Island, explains that while selfie-taking is just the way of the social media world, refreshing the picture constantly and waiting for the “likes” to rack up and the comments to come pouring in could be a sign that “you’re overly dependent on external feedback to determine your inner happiness. All the selfies in the world won’t replace genuine self-esteem,” reminds Kenner.
While the majority of us are guilty of one too many duck faces and have much too many photos with heavy peace sign-age any 60’s flower child would be proud of, we should remember that the moment is more important than the pretty picture we get out of it. Spending your time fixing your hair and blotting your face after your vigorous walk with the dog will only take away the real, true nature of the moment you’re trying to capture. So next time you’re at the beach with the family, going out for Girls Night, or snuggling on the couch, take a shot of the real moment; hair mussed, smile big and genuine. Or, set the phone down and simply live the moment.