Selfies became all the rage once the front-facing camera hit the scene in 2010. Back in the day, self-portraits were more personal, only shared with peeps like family and friends. They certainly weren’t broadcast to an endless audience on the internet. But hey, the cat’s been out of the bag for awhile now. There’s no going back — or is there?
Instant ego, posing pandemic
Now, “selfitis” — AKA selfie addiction — may not be an official diagnosis, but some experts think it could be a sign of bigger problems, like body dysmorphic disorder or low self-esteem. And while excessive social media use, including taking and sharing selfies, can have a downer effect on our mental health and well-being, it’s crucial to remember that not everyone who takes a selfie is “addicted.”
A tale of pouts and pixels
Here’s a little secret: taking selfies can actually trigger the release of dopamine, a feel-good chemical in our brains. But too much of a good thing can lead to increased anxiety and decreased self-esteem. So let’s all remember to strike a healthy balance, and snap away with caution!
Here are some tips to help reduce excessive selfie-taking:
- Set limits: Decide how many selfies you want to take each day or week, and stick to that limit.
- Practice mindfulness: Pay attention to your surroundings and engage in experiences without constantly trying to capture them in a photo.
- Find other forms of self-expression: Try new hobbies or activities that allow you to express yourself in different ways, such as writing, painting, or playing music.
- Connect with others: Spend time with family and friends and engage in meaningful conversations, instead of relying on social media for connection.
- Seek support: Consider talking to a therapist or counselor who can help you address any underlying issues that may be contributing to excessive selfie-taking.
- Delete social media apps or limit your time on them: Taking a break from social media can help reduce the urge to take and share selfies.
- Remember the bigger picture: Focus on the memories and experiences you’re creating, instead of just the photos you’re taking.
The snare of selfie dependence
Selfie addiction can lead to social isolation as we may spend excessive amounts of time taking and editing selfies, reducing the time spent interacting with others and fostering meaningful relationships. Then, there’s the FOMO: The constant urge to share selfies on social media can contribute to FOMO, as we feel left out or inadequate when comparing our lives to the curated images of others.
Many of us know very well we have a problem. It may not be deadly, but it isn’t ideal. The years can really whiz by while you’re angling that selfie stick. And plus, your lips need a break. Duckface is no way to go through life!