Signs You're a Social Media Narcissist
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Look at Me!1 of 9
By Sara Tan
Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google Plus, Vine … all great—just not all the time. In fact, researchers have found that our obsession with social media is becoming less about connecting with others and more about vanity, egocentricity and self-promotion. We spoke with Elliot Panek and Sara Konrath, lead researchers for a University of Michigan study linking social media and narcissism. Read on to find out if you—or someone you know—is a social media narcissist.
Selfie Specialist2 of 9
You're constantly updating your profile picture. Instead of choosing a profile photo that illustrates the close relationships you may have with friends and family, you choose ones that say, "I'm pretty and fun!" Research also finds that you choose profile photos that might "maximize the possibility of gaining admiration." Translation: You pick the one you think will get the most "likes."
Obsessive Checking3 of 9
You're constantly checking your social media accounts—and we're not talking once or twice a day. By constantly, we mean you're refreshing your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts more than your work email, approximately 60 to 100 times a day. What's more is that you're not just checking to see what all your friends and followers are up to—according to researchers, you're making sure you're not missing out on any comments or mentions anyone's left for (or about) you.
Oversharing4 of 9
You update your status and post photos often. Studies have proven that Facebook encourages users to engage in self-promoting, superficial behaviors. As a result, researchers have found that those who scored highest in narcissism really enjoyed posting photos and writing status updates. They also found that the updates were of no particular importance or interest, as rated by their friends. So, the next time you feel like updating your status about what you had for lunch, accompanied by a photo of you eating it, maybe think again.
Tweet, Tweet5 of 9
You tweet every thought you have. Sure, some people like to use Twitter to check the latest news updates, follow their favorite celebrities and share important information (they're called "informers"), but not you. You think of Twitter as your megaphone and tweet about what you're doing every day, throughout the day (you're called a "meformer"). Research also says it makes you feel important—kind of like you're famous.
Great News!6 of 9
You like to tell everyone how amazing your life is. From the present your loving boyfriend gifted you to the marathon you just kicked butt in, your friends and followers are more than likely to find out within a few minutes of it happening. A recent study found that people with narcissistic tendencies were most likely to "self-promote" through social media, which means you spend a majority of your time on Facebook and Instagram boasting and bragging.
Over-Friending7 of 9
You have A LOT of friends and followers, many of whom you either don't speak to or know that well (or even at all). You're not really looking to make real friends through your social media accounts—you do it for the attention and for the numbers. Research says that users with a higher friend count are looking for more of an audience rather than friendships, which explains why you are also more likely to accept friend requests from strangers.
Seeking Support8 of 9
Your social media profiles make you feel better about yourself. When you're having a bad day or feeling a little stressed out, you find yourself scrolling through your Facebook profile or Instagram feed to remind yourself what an awesome life you have. Several studies have found that people who ranked high in narcissism turn to their social media profiles to seek social support.
Strike a Pose9 of 9
You enlist your boyfriend, close friend or family member to play photographer. While there haven't been any studies on the effects of "playing model" (yet!), we're pretty sure that staging your own photo shoots on a regular basis increases the likelihood of self-aggrandizement.