1 December 2015

Selfie : How Obsessed Are We?

Taking a selfie is the most banal contemporary pastimes ever. Everyone is taking selfies - shouldn't we really be worried about this trend?

Writer Donna Highfill explains,“I have run into at least 10 people recently who have stopped on fast-moving, heavily-populated sidewalks to take a #selfie. There is no historical building behind them, no beautiful landscape, no real reason to take a picture of themselves other than the fact that they can reverse the camera on the phone, gaze at their own visage, and then share it on social media so the rest of the world can gaze upon it as well.”

No occasion is sacred either, including somber events like funerals. Obama’s funeral gaffe went on to inspire other more macabre copycat selfies.

 Obama at Nelson Mandela's funeral
What starts with an innocent ‘selfie’ habit could be an indication that these self-obsessed smartphone users are really feeling bad inside – a perpetually needy, anxious, depressed, and narcissistic person who constantly requires attention of others to fill-in an emotional vacuum carved out by too much time spent exposed to social media.
I've seen people take several selfies over and over again until they find the right one - picking out details about their skin, hair, smile, eyes and so forth. This creates great forms of self consciousness.

How far can the obsession go? A British male teenager went to the extent of attempting suicide after he was unable to take what he felt was the perfect selfie. Danny Bowman became so obsessed with selfies that he spent roughly 10 hours per day taking upto 200 selfies trying to get the perfect shot. As things got intense for Danny, he lost 30 pounds, dropped out of school and did not leave the house for six months. During his suicide attempt, he was saved by his mother.

While this is an extreme case, it isn't too far from what goes through minds of young and even older people. Overtime an obsession builds and our looks become increasingly more important to us. Something I feel we should be focusing less on. Thus, feeling good about yourself is accepted but without the narcissistic streak.


Poojaa Mukherjee is a bookworm who loves dance, drama, drawing and clings onto quotes like treasure. A Romantic to the core, real foodie and passionate movie buff. Currently Studying English in Shri Shikshayatan.

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