By Christina Fazio
Selfie. To many, this word brings embarrassing photos of the infamous duck face to mind, while others see it as an acceptable way to exercise the capabilities of our well equipped smartphones.
With the Oxford Dictionary coining the term selfie as 2013’s word of the year, perhaps it is more than trivial to consider the implications these self photos can have on us intrapersonally.
One of the most common attacks made against anyone engaging in this behavior involves calling the person a narcissist. Perhaps many of us enjoy taking selfies because of the positive feedback we receive from others that often comes along with sharing these photos.
Okay, so what is the problem with that? As human beings, we are designed to seek approval and acceptance amongst other members of our species.
Despite popular belief, taking selfies may actually serve as a self-improvement technique that enhances our intrapersonal relationship we have within ourselves.
Snapping a selfie and reviewing it for pending approval allows us to become self-aware of how we physically present our emotions and how we appear to others. Repeated exposure to pictures of ourselves, flaws included, desensitizes us to our physical deficits and allows us to view ourselves in a broad spectrum.
Selfie taking is a technique, already employed by many, to help gain confidence and acceptance of ourselves. According to the mere exposure hypothesis, the more we are repeatedly exposed to any stimuli, we begin to view the stimuli more favorably.
In other words, the more you look at yourself, the more you begin to like the way you look.
Sharing the products of our self photo shoots allows us to express our unique perceptions, which influences the shape of our personalities. Capturing and sending selfies exercises what we find to be subjectively acceptable of sharing with others.
Sending our selfies to friends, despite having witnessed our own visible imperfections within the photo, suggests that we are accepting of who we are and what we look like.
The next time you need a reminder of the extent to which you are self-aware and comfortable within your own skin, look no further than the lens of your frontwards facing camera for closer introspection.
Christina Fazio is an Opinion writer for The Comment. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.