Shameless Pointless Selfies
I’ve mentioned before about my love hate relationship with social media in my post about creating a healthy timeline and if you’ve fallen out of love with social media, give it a read, it might help you to restructure what you see when you are passing time on your smart phone. My main issue was that I’d filled my Instagram timeline, my favourite social media app, with photos that had me rolling my eyes rather than making me smile or genuinely interesting me. So what is it that was really getting my goat about Twitter, Facebook and Instagram? The answer, ridiculous, shameless, pointless selfies.
Rewind a decade and we were blissfully unaware of ‘the selfie’ but in 2013 it was added to the Oxford English Dictionary as an actual word, along with ‘twerking’ – but let’s not even go there! So how does Wikipedia define selfie:
A selfie (/?selfiː/) is a self-portrait photograph, typically taken with a digital camera or camera phone held in the hand or supported by a selfie stick. Selfies are often shared on social networking services such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. They are usually flattering and made to appear casual. Most selfies are taken with a camera held at arm’s length or pointed at a mirror, rather than by using a self-timer. A selfie stick can be used to position the camera farther away from the subject, allowing the camera to see more around them.
The line that made me chuckle to myself in the definition was that they are usually flattering and made to appear casual. I must admit whenever I see selfies posted on social media I do often wonder how many takes were required before the perfect look was achieved. I imagine the various pouts, eyebrow raises, half smirks, camera on full face, camera on half face, hand on hip or hand behind the head poses it took before that person was happy to post their ‘casual’ selfie. Now imagine the editing that’s then involved tweaking that photo before it is social media ready and then you have to think of the wording to accompany it and a few witty hashtags. Well done, you have now successfully wasted part of your day doing something completely and utterly non-productive.
I adore the concept of hygge and living in the moment and it makes me sad (or maybe just bemused) when I’m enjoying a night out with the hubby or friends and see people trying to take selfies with their cocktails or meal then spend the next few minutes posting them on social media. It’s the need to tell everyone else what a good time you are having whilst actually just faffing on your phone. Take a picture, sure, it’s nice to look back on photos from special occasions or nights out just don’t let it consume your night. Your Facebook friends are not going to think you are boring and never leave the sofa just because you didn’t post a picture of you on a night out. The reality is, nobody really cares and I mean that in the nicest possible way!
I love a before and after photo, especially from people on their weight loss journey because I recognise the hard work involved in achieving it but again, know when to stop. Once we’ve seen one or two before and after photos, we get it and we’ve congratulated you. After that think about why you are posting it. Is it for an ego massage? Is it to make other people feel inferior or bad about their own physical appearance? Or is it to genuinely motivate others? We’ve all seen the posts and read the comments that follow…
Oh you look great hun. You are so gorgeous. I wish I looked like you and I haven’t even had kids. You’re amazing!
I guess the point in this post is that I’d like selfie lovers to think about why they are posting so many photos of themselves, stood on their own in a bedroom or bathroom. Are they seeking acceptance from their peers? Or has social media got us all so obsessed with our appearance that we just need the reassurance that we’re looking good?
With all the editing apps that are available these days do we even believe our eyes when we see these photos and how do they make you feel? Do you feel motivated by ‘check out my figure’ photos or do they change your mood in a negative way?
I’m guilty of taking so many photos of my kids and not very often getting in the pics but I’d like to change this. So join me, don’t shy away from the camera, get in those family photos, take group shots with friends, get a photo with the other half and enjoy yourself! Like in the good old days before all the twerking!