Social Media & The Selfie Syndrome – Making Us Narcissistic?

The “selfie” is common practice for most in the fitness industry. It’s not uncommon to see men and women posing in front of the mirror, any mirror, for a “selfie”. Heck it doesn’t even have to be a mirror for some, any reflective surface might be a perfect photo opportunity to snap a pic of one’s bod.  It’s harmless and just a way to show off that killer sweat, right? Totally girlfriend and if anyone says different they’re just a hater! Nothing like sharing how amaze balls a booty pump was or a close up of boob sweat to gain a few “likes” on Instagram.


selfie syndrome


It’s likely not a question of if but when and how many selfies we’ve taken at this point. Some people have made it an art form while others of us struggle not to look like we’re constipated posing for the perfect selfie. Does this seemingly harmless activity lead to other issues? An infographic by The Best Computer Science Schools suggests selfies might point to narcissism. After reading the narcissistic signs, I’d have to agree that many in the fitness industry are guilty.  Check it out….

What is Narcissism?
● Narcissistic personality disorder involves a preoccupation with self and how one is perceived by others. Narcissists pursue gratification from vanity and the admiration of their own physical and intellectual attributes.

Signs of narcissism:
â—‹ Unilateral listening
■ Instead of listening in order to respond, narcissists listen in order to dismiss, negate, ignore, minimize or otherwise make someone else’s concerns irrelevant
â—‹ Preoccupied with self
â–  Narcissists act selfishly and, even if being generous, are generally only responsive to their own concerns
â—‹ Being above the rules
■ Narcissists feel that they are above others and that the rules don’t apply to them
â—‹ Inability to take criticism
â–  While narcissists have an inflated idea of their own importance, they can be quickly deflated by negative criticism
â—‹ Refusal to take responsibility
â–  Narcissists have a tendency to blame others for things that go wrong
â—‹ Quick to anger
â–  Narcissists may become easily angered by critical comments or being ordered what to do

Negative Effects of Social media:
● According to research from California State University: Excessive use of social networking may be connected to psychiatric problems
â—‹ Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
â—‹ Depression
â—‹ Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
â—‹ Narcissistic Personality Disorder
â—‹ Hypochondriasis
â—‹ Schizoaffective and Schizotypal Disorders
â—‹ Body Dysmorphia
â—‹ Voyeurism
â—‹ Addiction

The Effects of Popular Platforms:
● Facebook- The Social Mirror
â—‹ People who use Facebook the most tend to have more narcissistic or insecure personalities
â—‹ Those with higher narcissism scores were frequently updating statuses, posting pictures of themselves and using quotes or mottos to glorify themselves
â—‹ Based on a study of Facebook users ages 18-25 using the Narcissism Personality Inventory and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale.
â—‹ A 2012 survey of divorce lawyers showed that Facebook had been implicated in â…“ of all divorce filings the previous year

● Twitter- The Social Megaphone
â—‹ In a University of Michigan study of college undergraduates, it was found that those who scored higher in narcissism also posted more often on Twitter
â—‹ Young people are using Twitter to broaden social circles and broadcast views. This usage leads people to over evaluate the importance of their opinions

Are you becoming a narcissist? Nahhhh of course not. Instead of pretending like you could never be one, ask your friends if they see any of the above mentioned signs in you. Take a honest look at yourself, just do so without your phone in hand.



Info and graphic via


Disclaimer: Reader discretion advised, please consult your physician before beginning any exercise or diet program.