Friday, February 13, 2015

Are You Addicted To Selfies?

I live in a selfie generation. You too. Like you, I take selfies. Adjust my smartphone camera to self with a simple touch, pose, smile, and post! Facebook, instagram, twitter, and other social media are waiting. Selfies have indeed become a worldwide phenomenon.

This week, I gave a lecture on selfie psychology at a university college of nursing in Manila. I found the students there warm and creative in their organizing ... and with their selfies. Well, those selfies during and after my talk were not necessarily harmful. I found some humorous. Mostly, they're taken for class posterity and project documentation.

Yet in so many places of the world, we may not know exactly what to think. That is, because people who are at-risk or have a "preexisting condition" can get addicted to selfies as a drug-of-choice. British 19-year-old teen, Danny Bowman, for instance, tried to commit suicide after he failed to take his perfect selfie. He became so obsessed with it that he spent 10 hours a day taking up to 200 selfies. He lost 30 pounds, dropped out of school, and eventually rushed to the hospital for treatment and psychotherapy.

The internet is an incredible resource. It's kind of magic! But it's also a venue for madness for some people. Selfies and the social media are places where it can be all too easy to fall prey to obsession or narcissistic activity. It's not uncommon, for countless youth for example, to let reality slip away while staring at a 2-inch screen, savoring on the thrill of selfies and the social media.

Be careful with your taking selfies and your motivation behind it. Psychologists are now discovering that taking selfies can turn into an addiction for people already affected by certain psychological disorders.

What do your selfies feed inside you?

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