Selfies, Narcissism And Psychopathy

Selfie by Ellen

Do you take selfies? And post them online? Well, most of us do. Even I do. These are some of the scenarios you’d take selfies.

  • Hanging out with friends
  • Going on a trip
  • With something special on the background
    • i.e. A building, statue, an incident or whatever
  • In a party
  • etc.

Most of the above photos involve more people in your photo. In some cases, it’s just you.

In order to get deep on this matter, let’s consider the motive of taking a photo. The basic idea is to keep it as a memory. I mean, that’s the whole idea of the invention, right? The specialty about “selfies” is, that it is described as a “self portrait photograph” : which means it’s a photo of yourself.

So, let me ask that question from you.

“Why do you take that photo/selfie ?”

Think deeply. What was a root cause of taking that picture? Is it as a memory? Then stop reading this. You’re good.

If not, you may want to continue.

If you take lots of selfies, you might be mentally ill.

But how? Who the hell am I to judge you. Well, as always, it’s not me. It’s science.

Research suggest, if you take a lot of selfies, you might be suffering from Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD):a psychological disorder in which a person becomes obsessed with imaginary defects in their appearance.

Mostly, you must be taking a few (or hundreds) of selfies before selecting the best one to post online. And if you’re using an app to do the refinements, you’re way beyond rescue. That means, you’re not satisfied with your appearance. You want to make sure that you look perfect. And you want to show it to the world. Nobody looks perfect (and, I don’t even know what this “perfect” is). And, you’re brave enough to caption it as “Be yourself”. LMFAO. Then first, at least remove the filter you applied for the photo.!!

You may not notice that, but that is BDD or Narcissism (excessive or erotic interest in oneself and one’s physical appearance). Some people like to categorize it as “low-self-esteem”. The reason is, when you feel down, alone and broke, taking a selfie and posting online would give you a temporary redemption, by seeing the number of “likes” it gets. (Dude, seriously?? )

Psychopathy is a whole new perception of this matter. Or rather the opposite of Narcissism. Narcissism measures inflated self-image (often motivated by underlying insecurity), while psychopathy involves lack of empathy and impulsive behavior. So the bottom line is :

If you take lots of selfies, there is a probability of you being a psychopath.

Do you know there are people, who post a selfie and watch over the likes/comments count?

Researchers have found that, when other people like these photos, or comment as “cute”, “lovely”, “pretty” and blah blah blah, these people feel better about themselves, and they use it as a drug to hide themselves from their real selves.

There are four major reasons for these selfies.

  1. Wants to be loved
    • Well, everybody does. But when you feel that you’re not being loved by the people who are actually around you, you tend to seek it on social media.
    • You need attention!
    • You post a photo online, and eagerly wait for the likes and comments.
    • And even wait for a few minutes and hit the refresh button constantly to see if those counts have increased.
    • These people go beyond the boundaries to hold grudges on people who don’t “like” their photos.
      • “Hey, have you seen the latest photo I’ve uploaded”.. “You haven’t liked it though….”
  2. Wants to be accepted
    • At the same time, these likes and comments make you feel “accepted”.
    • “I posted a picture of my face and 30 people liked it! Wow! Maybe they think I’m cool, good-looking, fun or maybe they want to date me?!”
    • Maybe you just want to know that someone else cares about you, that they see you or that you matter.
    • “I have an iPhone. Let’s take a mirror selfie, so everyone would know that I have an iPhone”
  3. Wants to matter
    • You see other people posting selfies on their vacation, the food they make, new dresses etc. Then it strikes you, “wow, that person is having a nice time”. So you feel like showing to them (and others) what you’re doing as well (that’s like a virus). So, you’ll post what you eat at McDonald’s, what you bought for yourself, you’re alive on a weekend and every damn thing you do.
    • You think that’s what matter, to show people what you do. But believe me, even the people who hit “like” don’t give a damn, just like the people who don’t give a damn anyway.
  4. Wants connection
    • You want to connect with people. You want to show your interests. And that’s good.
    • May be your intention is to become popular among your friends (or rather social media friends who haven’t even seen you). Well, that’ll play a considerable role if you’re a celebrity or an politician.
    • You want to belong to a group. To be a part of a group.

I’m not saying selfies are bad. Even I take selfies (even though I don’t remember the last time I did). If you’re exited about something, such as your new car, your graduation, you won a championship etc. Yes, that’s a memory worth being snapped.

Remember, photographs are meant for keeping memories. Showing your face to other people every day of the year does not make you a memory for them. It’s annoying!

How about, when you’re at your work place and suddenly you think of taking a random selfie, put a few hashtags (so you can express your innovative ideas for captioning the photo) and then post it online.

“Morning drive to work”

“Chilling the weekend”

“Look, I did something productive today at work”

“Look, I haven’t done anything productive at work today”. (Hope your boss won’t see that)

“Look, this is my face, for no reason!”

May be I am sick or not in that mental level, but I seriously can’t imagine the mentality of getting a thought to take a random selfie and post it online. I seriously don’t.

There are millions of times occurred to me, that I wanted so bad to post the below photo comment on these photos.

Nobody cares

Yes, you have the right to post your photos online. If people don’t like them, they’ll ignore it. Or in the worst case, they’ll unfriend you.

Do you post inspirational/motivational quotes along with your selfies?

Then I have another bad news for you. Just read this article.

Special Note:

If you’re posting selfies with your better half, that can be excused, since that is a whole another paradigm. It’s always to have nice memories.

These series of actions causes the whole society to go senseless. When a photo of a person holding a Mathematics Olympiad Gold medal gets 50 likes, some random weekend chilling selfie gets 200 likes. As for the way social media algorithms work, they’re programmed to promote contents with more reach and activity. When someone looks up his/her news feed, it is filled with faces, but not really important stuff. (sorry, your face might be important to you, but may not be to others)


We all are human, and we want to be highlighted. But selfies are not a way to do that. Show your true self, by contributing with actions. Not with selfies.

As a person who hates selfies, here are few tips “how not to be a selfie psychopath”.

  1. When you take a photo, please think twice “Why am I taking this?”
  2. When you’re posting that photo, think hundred time “Why would I want to show this to others?”. “Is this worth sharing?”
  3. Go to your profile and see how many of the photos are of your face? Are these the memories of your life? All you do is to collect photos of your face? for what? To make a time-lapse video of evolution?
  4. Don’t make “taking a selfie” a part of your daily/weekly routine!
  5. Meet real people, live in the real life. Cut the bullshit. Enjoy it.

Most importantly, there is no right measurement of classifying the photos/selfies to “good” or “bad”. It depends on the audience. And don’t think you can post whatever you want, because it’s your right. That means, you don’t even know your rights properly.

Simply, think before you post it.

Well, I’m not someone to judge you! I just told a possibility of having a mental issue or getting looked down upon by the world.


  2. Study Links Selfies To Narcissism And Psychopathy (
  3. Why we post selfies (
  4. What Do #Selfies Say About The Psychology Of You? (
  5. Why we really take selfies: the ‘terrifying’ reasons explained (

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