Recently I read a few articles about how 'selfies' are selfish, narcissistic...even psychopathic and I really disagree. I mean there are always going to be extremes to anything people get involved in but to label all selfie takers as selfish is rude and judgmental.
Let me take you for a spin down the road of self-love and give you another view of the Selfie.
WHY I SELFIE
1. Because, ME! I don't know anyone on the planet that hasn't has a good deal of negativity, self-doubt or insecurities in their life. Growing up I hated that I had a pot-belly, a long nose and pale skin. I was raised in a household where we pretty much got what we wanted and I was frequently called lazy and spoiled. In my teen years I had boyfriends put me down, tell me I couldn't sing, use me to buy them things and other forms of both mental and physical abuse.
I've had many a heartbreak, been betrayed, bouts of depression, self-sabotage, put myself down and times I just wanted to punch myself in the face. Yeah, not good! So in the last several years of 'finding myself' I've learned that self-love is the greatest love. I am valuable. I am enough all by myself and I treat myself as a top priority. I now act as I would toward any other loving relationship in my life. I love taking pictures of my kids, friends, family, boyfriends, husbands, etc. so why should I exclude myself?
It's very easy to get into a vicious cycle of habitual negative self-talk. We tend to see the bad side in ourselves first so it takes a conscience effort to change it. Every time you see a picture of yourself, compliment it. That is you and you are something special.
2. Selfies help me see all my flaws and embrace them. Trust me, if you're taking a picture of yourself regularly you're going to see the good, bad and ugly from all angles. I see all my wrinkles, gray hairs, pimples, bags under my eyes, messy hair, flab and sag and have learned to accept it all (but thank God for Instagram filters, right? haha). Seeing my reflection everyday helps me know myself. Not just from my mind, but from my appearance. Like kinda the way others might see me and it helps me improve myself even more.
3. The more selfies I take, the more messages I receive from others telling me how much I inspire them. I'm always looking for ways to encourage people, but I really didn't have an intention with my selfies. I've just been living my life, posting about real things (struggles and victories) and people noticed. When I started posting pics of me working out I had several people tell me it encouraged them to start living a more healthy lifestyle also. When I posted pics of me when I was upset, others chimed in and encouraged me. It also allowed them to vent about what they were going through. And when I post pics of me dancing, acting silly and just loving life in general I received messages that I motivated them to look at life a little differently. I mean, c'mon... what could be better than that?
4. When I look back over my week, month, or year of selfies I'm reminded what an incredible life I have. I remember the good days and the bad days and both help me. I know I'm living life to the fullest and making memories along the way. I'm also reminded of how many people love me and that I'm never alone. Even in my more relaxed selfies, I see someone I like and trust....ME! I know God is always with me because I can see His light is shining through me. In turn, I love to shine my light out to others and hope to brighten their day somehow.
5. Selfies remind me to live in the moment. When I'm in the 'now' moment, I'm mindful of everything and everyone around me. I more fully enjoy everything more. I'm more fully engaged in conversations, more into the feelings I'm feeling, aware of all my senses and simply grateful for everything around me. So when I click the button to take a picture it's a reminder to stay present.
SOME SELFIE TIPS
So you see, I think selfies are awesome but if you take it too far it can have a negative affect. First, don't be self-absorbed. I know that sounds contradictory, but there is a difference in being super stuck on yourself, and simply loving who you are. A sure sign you might be a little conceited is if all your selfies are of your body and face and nothing else. Now, before I get a bunch of hate mail... let me clarify. If you have a hot body and cute face, post away.... I'm just saying you should be more than only that. Balance, my friends, balance.
Second, don't only show your good side - be human! It's ok to show your flaws, true emotions and weaknesses. In fact people will love you more for it. You being you, connects you to others being themselves also.
And finally, don't sit up there taking 54 selfies at a time trying to get the perfect shot. You'll miss the moment. And that's what really matters.
So let me ask you. Do you selfie? Why or why not?