Excessive Posting Of Selfies On Social Media Can Make You A Narcissist, Researchers Say


News: Excessive use of social media, in particular, the posting of selfies is associated with a subsequent increase in narcissism by an average of 25 per cent.

Narcissism refers to a personality disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, grandiosity and exhibitionism, entitlement mentality, and a lack of empathy for others.

Researchers from Swansea University and Milan University hired 74 individuals aged 18 to 34 and studied their personality changes over a period of four months. The team assessed the participants’ use of social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat. Researchers used a measurement scale to identify the level of narcissism in them.

Participants using social media excessively, through visual postings, displayed an average 25% increase in narcissistic traits over the four-month period. This increase took them above the clinical cut-off for Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Participants who mostly indulged in verbal posting in social media did not show these changes. However, more the increase in levels of narcissism, the more they engaged in verbal posting.

Professor Phil Reed, who led the study, said: “There have been suggestions of links between narcissism and the use of visual postings on social media, such as Facebook, but, until this study, it was not known if narcissists use this form of social media more, or whether using such platforms is associated with the subsequent growth in narcissism.” “The results of this study suggest that both occur, but show that posting selfies can increase narcissism.”

People who post more selfies and images on social media may feel they are the main focus of attention, emphasising the perception of narcissistic individuals. With no ‘direct’ social censure, they have more scope of inflicting aspects of their narcissistic personality. They may tend to present themselves in a grandiose manner and realise fantasies of omnipotence more and more according to Professor Roberto Truzoli from Milan University.

To Know More You May Refer To:

Reed, P., Bircek, N. I., Osborne, L. A., Viganò, C., & Truzoli, R. (2018). Visual social media use moderates the relationship between initial problematic internet use and later narcissism. The Open Psychology Journal, 11(1), 163-170. https://doi.org/10.2174/1874350101811010163

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