Do you love taking selfies and sharing them online? Do you spend hours getting ready and take multiple shots of your face until your chin looks just right? Are you extremely picky about what selfie you post and do you anxiously wait to see how many likes you can get? Well, we have some news for you: studies suggest that selfies may indicate low self-esteem and a slew of other mental health disorders.
In 2013, Oxford Dictionary announced “selfie” as its International Word of the Year, yet the word “selfie” can pretty much reflect the essence of this generation – the Millennial’s. Millennial’s are completely consumed by social media: activities such as sharing pictures of our food, places we visit, our Frappuccino, the classic gym photo, and most of all selfies. There are a multiple reports discussing the topic of selfies and how it affects confidence levels and more. According to psychologists, a person who takes a lot of selfies tends to have low confidence levels. Another indication of frequent selfie-taking activities suggests that individuals may be looking for validation from peers to determine their self-worth.
Typically selfies are not taken after any meaningful life event, they are taken for no reason at all: in restrooms, in the car while driving, during class, at work and in many inappropriate locations. After the selfie, it goes a step further when it comes time to post. Various filters and edits are made to erase flaws and create the “perfect” image. Perhaps if selfies were achievement photos snapped by people who overcame great hurdles in life or simply made a small difference in the world, there would be greater significance to the act of selfie-taking. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Society has altered our perceptions and has made us believe that physical attractiveness is our most important quality. In that respect, society teaches the younger generation that our self-worth is a reflection of how many followers we have on Instagram or how many likes and comments we can receive on our “flawless” selfies.
Let’s stay grounded and remember that our value and worth as individuals is much more than the validation we receive on social media. Let’s all take a moment to put our lives in perspective and realize that we all have so much more to offer than our exterior. If you are feeling unconfident, go for a hike, go to the gym and get those endorphins going. We must remember that flaws are beautiful and we all have something unique and wonderful to offer to the world.