Narcissus, a son of gods, was a hunter renowned for his beauty, so in love with himself he hated those who loved him. Narcissus had looks to kill, literally. Nemesis recognized this Achilles heel of his and exposed Narcissus to his own reflection where he fell in love with it and drowned after being unable to leave it. Thanks to Narcissus the concept of narcissism, the excessive interest in or admiration of oneself and one’s physical appearance, exists.
Generation-Y: the generation of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat,Vine selfies and hashtags. We are the Me-Me-Generation. We Millennials are the generation that posted the selfie all over the Internet and grew up with more participation trophies than any other.
Criticism does not fall short: we are known for narcissism, overconfidence, materialism, technology obsessions, and entitlement. There is constant debate about whether we will be the most destructive generation or the complete opposite.
Millennials are obsessed with fame. We literally live for the applause. Everyone wants to be famous whether for his or her “amazing” Instagram, hilarious Vines, or clever tweets. Aside from the determination to establish our own fame, following other famous people has become an obsession. Whether cutting your hair to look like Kylie Jenner, replicating a celebrity’s outfit, or eating at Sugarfish and Big Chill just because “everyone else” goes, the influence of the media is irresistible.
Before October 6, 2010 taking artsy pictures of frozen yogurt would have been considered strange and to keep up with the Kardashians you had to actually watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians, but when the world met Instagram nothing was the same would be an understatement.
The fact I have to wait several minutes for my friend to get a good picture of our food before I can eat makes me question the way we live our lives. The concept of living in the moment as a form of satisfaction seems to have been left behind with the Baby Boomers. We do it for the vine, dress for the Insta, and live for the likes. We expose our private world to receive approval from peers and a larger community. Why would anyone not want to be part of an infinite ego booster that is social media?
If only social media was just that. Social media craze includes altering natural photos to fit in with the culture with filters and app like Skineepix. Instagram can be an incredible way to document our lives and see the world around us, but it is also a breeding ground for narcissistic tendencies. With #me being the third most frequently used hashtag in 90 million photos we are clearly not utilizing Instagrams true potential. We need to use our “me, me, me” obsession to the benefit of the world and ourselves. We must not give into society’s expectations for us, so consequently we should think twice before taking a selfie in public.
Your summer vacation did not happen unless you got that perfect panorama beach picture. After getting a first car our first instinct is to take a picture and instagram it. Not to mention that as something funny is happening Snapchat is basically instinct.
Truth is, our generation has so much power that those before us have admitted to being scared of us. Millennials are able to rely on just themselves and use technology to create whatever they imagine. We do not need institutions or establishments to create and because of this we are one step ahead in changing the world.
In regard to narcissism, we are not only obsessed with ourselves but with, what other people think of us. The obsession with wanting to be approved drives us. According to the National Institutes of Health, 58 percent more college students scored higher on a narcissism scale in 2009 than in 1982. And narcissistic personality disorder is nearly three times as high for people in their 20s as for the generation that is now 65 or older.
“It’s probably both that higher narcissism causes people to use social media in narcissistic ways, and that some social media causes higher narcissism,” a research at San Diego State University, Jean Twenge said. “But it’s definitely a two-way street.”
Then again, we are in a phase of our lives that revolves around narcissism. As teenagers, we think the world revolves around us and we control everything. The difference between being a narcissist and a teenager is whether you grow out of that mentality or not. While we believe we are entitled to success, we also are way more knowledgeable and passionate about current trends and events.
In our defense, the world we live in right now requires narcissism to be ahead. If you are not already creating a digital brand and attracting followers you are behind. The whole old generation concept of put in time to get results has not been passed down. We are known to demand what our parents told us we should expect from the world, instead of working for it.
“We are all born to adore ourselves, but not all of us grow up,” Jeffery Kluger said.
So, yes we know how to send emails and text, but in the process we cannot lose the “soft skills” like shaking hands and making eye contact. We should not forget how lucky we are to not live in a period of suffering where we have to earn our basic necessities. We should silence all the hate and prove our narcissism is really a drive for success and that we will indeed change the world.