Selfies. They’ve become a commonly used, culturally known word in our society. Having a good selfie technique is like winning the internet Nobel prize. And yes, that is almost laughably sad, when you see the truth of the matter: We take millions of pictures of ourselves, posing in different, socially acceptable ways, and post them, hoping to gain attention/affection and be noticed, captioning them “Excuse my ugliness” in the hopes that someone will correct us, with the biggest threat being the amount of times people tap the “like” and “comment” button. And after all of this, the result is usually unintentional narcissism, with whispered words, if the picture is not acceptable to our peers, of how the person is “trying too hard”. If the selfie is good, though, then whispers still continue, of how “conceited” that person is. We crave acceptance, yet is there any, really? Today, unfortunately, things like the number of likes we receive, our Instagram ratios, our amount of followers, define who we are and how loved we are. The goal of today’s culture is not to be loved deeply, but only to be loved widely (thanks for this line JG), by people who do not even truly know who we are, only what they see and perceive by our social media. I, myself, am not trying to be overly superior by saying that I am not guilty of this. Of course I am. I used to be one of the most Instagram- obsessed, sadly. But now? I literally do not give a shit, because I’ve seen firsthand that no matter how hard you try, there is no perfect end result. I have friends who, no joke, it seems like they would sell their soul to get a certain amount of likes on their selfie. Listen, I’m not saying that posting a selfie is always conceited, sometimes it is a way for someone to be expressive or a way for them to quietly shine through insecurity. Creativity is delightful. But what certainly isn’t so delightful is this insane obsession we have with each other’s faces/bodies. If I want to post a selfie, let me post a damn selfie. Nobody can post anything on Instagram without getting instantly criticized, every flaw scrutinized and highlighted by others. This is what kills me. I’ll be with my friends, when suddenly one of them will whip out their iPhone, pull up a certain picture from a certain person, and criticize the picture, letting us all know how socially unacceptable certain selfie methods are. Usually, I roll my eyes and shut my opinionated self up before I say something a bit tooooo snarky. But what I really would love to do is yank the phone out of the person’s hand, and break into the song “Mean” by T-Swift, because, let’s face it, who doesn’t love a classic Taylor hit at perfectly appropriate timing with choreography and her signature head-whipping. Anyyyyways, I really don’t enjoy the extent of this once-fun trend. Although, now, I’m not quite sure you could even call it a trend. It’s lasted a long time, already, and it’s referenced recently in countless TV shows, movies, in live conversations, and even songs (Yeah, you know the one).
So what’s my personal opinion on the selfie game? I hate the obsession, the care that goes into it, the competition. But I’m guilty of it as well. Selfies are like drugs, honestly, they’re extremely harmful but so addictive. Getting a “good” amount of likes gets me on this weird high like nothing else. And so, what’s the solution to this? To stop being so damn judgmental of everyone’s selfies. They’re pictures. How do they affect us, remotely, or at all?
Don’t up your selfie game. Lower it, and so will everyone else.