When was the last time you took a selfie?
If I am honest, the last time I took one was last night. I was at youth group and I wanted to get a group shot with my small group of students. People are obsessed with taking pictures of themselves. It’s crazy. How many photo’s are in your instgram feed that have your face in them.
When we talk about idols today, one of the big ones of this generation is narcissism. It’s all about us. I was reading recently about how Kim Kardashian was photoshopping her instagram photos. It’s not surprising when we live in a world where we are so image obsessed. There was another woman named, Essena O’Neill, who quit instagram claiming that nothing was real about her account. She states in the article in the Guardian that, Yet I, myself, was consumed by it. This was the reason why I quit social media: for me, personally, it consumed me. I wasn’t living in a 3D world.”
“I remember I obsessively checked the like count for a full week since uploading it,” she wrote of her first-ever post, a selfie that now has close to 2,500 likes. “It got 5 likes. This was when I was so hungry for social media validation … Now marks the day I quit all social media and focus on real life projects”
There is an idolatry associated with social media. What is the image that we are putting out there. What are we trying to receive from it? Some of the students I work with and know understand that they could make a ton of money from instagram if they leverage it right. There is a thing about being “insta” famous.
This infographic called: Selfie Obsession: The rise of the social media narcissist is timely. It’s from Rawhide.org.
Here are few things that stand out:
- Every year teens spend the equivalent of 7 working days taking selfies. This is crazy.
- Traits of selfie obsessed teens are over friending, and self promotion. When was the last time you unfriended people? I try to do it every two months. I can’t keep up with my friends at my church, why would I think that having over 500 friends on Facebook would help build relationships. With that said, I have build some awesome friendships online, and last year I was able to hangout with a few of those awesome people. There are warning signs of people who are complete narcissists. If you see it, you should address it. Our students don’t need to get their value and worth based on likes. You are not your likes on social media.
- The three R’s of selfie control (Reduce, Rething, Reflect). These are gold. I have been saying for years that if your social media accounts aren’t fostering real relationships, then why have them? Everything we do should be either leading us to a face to face conversation, or it isn’t really necessary.
Seeing your role. As a youth worker, you see this all the time. You might even see other youth workers struggle with a selfie addition. I constantly wonder how we can point people back to the gospel, and how we don’t need to find our worth based on something, but on someone, and that someone is Jesus. This is a powerful thing for a teenager drowning in a selfish culture.