Recently, Tova Leigh wrote an intriguing open letter to Kim Kardashian requesting different selfies that more accurately reflect reality so that other mothers can relate better to the "real" Kardashian, instead of promoting an impossible standard:
Next time you take a selfie, don't hold the camera in that high angle that makes your waist look even smaller than it already is. You don't need it and we don't need to think you are THAT fit. Make sure you don't have any makeup on so we can see that you are not perfect.
Most of us would admit that Kim Kardashian's selfies are aesthetically pleasing and have a high entertainment value, but what's missing is a message like, "Hey fellow moms. We're together in this. I'm just like you. This image that the world obsesses over is just for fun. THIS is the real me."
Why do we care so much what Kardashian's selfies look like? Because we're constantly being force-fed a standard across media channels for how we should act and look. We also underestimate the power that social media images have to make us feel depressed and self-loathing.
Of course, you can try to avoid Kim Kardashian's selfies, but you'll still peek at them.
So what do I recommend to make your selfies healthier? In the video below, I share five simple steps for taking a healthy selfie as demonstrated by my favorite actress, Liat Ron. Just a few minor changes can do wonders for your self-esteem, especially if you take a lot of selfies.
Whether you're Kim Kardashian or the amazing person that YOU are, know that you have the power to start a wave of self-love that could benefit millions of people.
Why do I focus on selfies as a way to enhance confidence?
Because our society is slow to publicly acknowledged the actual extent to which selfies negatively affect us. Like the iPhones and Androids we use to capture them, they've become such an indelible part of our lives that we're not motivated to question their impact on our inner world.
My hope is that icons like Kim Kardashian will lead the way or borrow a dose of authenticity from celebrities like Mayim Bialik who conveys unselfishness and a sense that she's wholeheartedly invested in bringing out the best in you. I wish Mayim knew how much she inspires my wife with her brilliant insights and realness. For that I am grateful.
Selfies seem innocuous, but they're not. They have the power to slowly eat away at your self-image -- or they can bring out the best in you if you make about 30 percent of your selfies healthy.
So far, people have been sharing how unusually fulfilling it is after taking a healthy selfie.
I promise that you'll feel the difference. I'm also aware that the perfectly manicured selfie can also make you feel proud and attractive once the finished product is created, but the benefits are fleeting because "perfect' selfies involve bending reality to believe something that doesn't represent most of the time you live with yourself. Healthy selfies, on the other hand, reflect the real, imperfect you.
And imperfect is the real perfect!
I've started a Healthy Selfie Challenge to spread self-love through the world of social media and beyond.
Post a healthy selfie for your friends that follows the guidelines outlined in my video. Tag three friends in your post so people will get the message that it's time to take the challenge.
Show the world you love yourself just as you are and then challenge others to demonstrate the same.
The Healthy Selfie Challenge is an initiative started by Dr. Greg Kushnick on Techealthiest.
Techealthiest is an exciting new megablog dedicated to teaching the technology of health and happiness. Learn innovative tips and strategies for improving self-esteem by making changes to your digital lifestyle. Dr. Greg also writes as the Social Media Lama to inspire the world to adopt healthier social media habits.
Dr. Greg Kushnick is a Manhattan psychologist in private practice who has developed an effective method for bringing about powerful changes through enhanced cognitive behavioral strategies.