In defence of narcissism

(I just spent a few minutes distraught over the spelling of the word “defence.”  I actually like the look of “defense” better.  But defense is the American way, and defence is the British and Canadian way.  So I guess I’ll have to stick with that.)

I’m a self-identified narcissist.  I wasn’t always.  No one has actually ever outright told me that I was a narcissist.  A few may have strongly implied it.  My friend asked me why I thought I was narcissistic and I asked “Would a non-narcissistic person post daily selfies of herself?”  Well, would they?  I’d like to know.  It’s more something I joke about than something I’m actually concerned about.  Being too narcissistic is definitely the least of my worries.  It’s not even on my list of worries really.  I use the hashtags #narcissist and #vanity on Instagram whenever I post photos of myself.  I used to actually hate selfies.  Like, really hate them.  I thought they were something that only extremely self-absorbed, narcissistic individuals did.  And then I realized that I am a self-absorbed, narcissistic individual.  And I embraced it full on.

Throughout my life, I’ve always seen things about “learning to love yourself” and “being happy with who you are.”  It’s kind of sad that these are messages that have to be repeated over and over again to such a strong degree, because it implies that a lot of people don’t love themselves and aren’t happy with who they are.  And that’s really sad.  Every person in the world has some degree of insecurity about themselves.  No one is perfect.  I’ll bet even Beyonce has moments when she doesn’t feel absolutely flawless, as shocking as that may sound.  Even the richest and most powerful people in the world must have moments where they wish at least one little thing about them was different.

I feel like the whole idea of loving yourself is embraced by society, but only up to a certain point.  As if you should love yourself, but not love yourself too much.  Because then you’re just seen as selfish and self absorbed.  I don’t mean you should only and always put yourself first and say to hell with everyone else, but you are important.  I don’t think I’ve always been narcissistic.  As I child, I don’t think I was.  I often joke about hating myself and use self deprecating humour whenever I have the chance.  But in order to really pull off self deprecating humour, and to have the ability to laugh at yourself, I think you need and possess a certain degree of self confidence and security.  Otherwise it’s less humorous and more depressing.  I don’t like to boast about my accomplishments and achievements the way some people do.  Maybe I would, if I’d accomplished more in my life.  I also don’t need to post daily selfies.  It’s just something that I do.

I’ve also seen a lot of articles about “learning to do things alone” and “making time for yourself.”  It seems odd to me that these are things that people need to learn how to do.  I’ve always done things by myself and thought nothing of it.  It took a while for me to realize that not everyone feels secure doing things on their own, especially when they are so used to having someone always be there.  Going to a concert alone seems like such a foreign concept to some people.  Like they wouldn’t be caught dead doing so and to do so would somehow be pathetic.  But why?  Why do we feel the need to have someone accompany us to all things all the time?  I’ve been to concerts and other various events by myself and had a great time.  Some people would hate the idea of being alone on a Friday or Saturday night, but sometimes it’s nice to have a night off to yourself to just relax and do whatever you feel like doing or not doing.

One of the main reasons why it’s important to be comfortable with yourself and who you are and make yourself a priority is because you’re stuck with yourself.  Your relationship with yourself is the most secure one in your life.  You can’t take a break from yourself.  You can’t take a night off from yourself.  You are always there.  You are always you.  How awful would life be if you were stuck with a person you didn’t like 24/7?  It would be truly miserable.  Loving and appreciating yourself for who you are, despite your flaws, is essential if you want to get through life and not be unhappy.  This doesn’t mean you have to take selfies, or love the way you look, or shun everyone else.  But as long as whatever you’re doing that makes you happy isn’t hurting anyone, then I say go for it.

I found myself wondering the other day if a person could go to rehab for narcissistic personality.  But I wouldn’t want to go for a cure, I’d just want to go because rehab always sounds fabulous, at least when rich celebrities do it.  Maybe I’m not actually a narcissist.  Do truly narcissistic people even realize that they’re narcissists?  Sometimes you need to be a little self-absorbed, especially if you have health concerns or legitimate reasons that you need to take extra care of yourself.  I think that it’s possible to be narcissistic in a good way, as long as your narcissism isn’t having a negative impact on the people around you, and as long as you are still capable of extending love to others, as well as yourself.

I do realize that today’s society is filled with selfish people and if certain individuals were to think of others instead of themselves for a change, that would do some good.  But in contrast, I also believe there are many people who neglect themselves and don’t put enough focus on embracing who they are.  I think it’s important to strive to achieve a healthy balance of valuing yourself and valuing other people.

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Because this wouldn’t be a post about narcissism if I didn’t include a selfie

My parents are following me on Facebook

Yeah.  So a few years ago, when my dad got Facebook, he sent me a friend request.  Which I declined.  Because I didn’t want him seeing all my stuff.  I felt it was unnecessary.  This year, my mom decided to get Facebook.  She pretty much just wanted it so she could enter a contest, so she barely ever uses it.  Soon after getting it, I received a friend request from her as well.  Which I had to decline also.  I’m not going to accept one parent and not the other.  That just wouldn’t be fair.  It’s either all or nothing.

Last week, I received a notification on Facebook that my dad was following me.  My immediate thought was “Oh shit!”.  And then I looked at my list of followers and realized my mom was following me on Facebook as well.  Crap.  The only reason I got notified about my dad is because we have one mutual friend.  At first I cursed the fact that we had one mutual friend, because I think that’s how he found my profile a couple years ago.  But now I’m grateful, because if it weren’t for that friend, I wouldn’t have even been notified about the fact that he is currently following me.

I haven’t talked to them about it at all.  But I did immediately update my Facebook status to “My parents are following me on Facebook.  This is the beginning of the end.”  Which I’m sure they would have read, since my posts should now be showing up in their news feed since they’re following me.  I’m not sure how often they check it.  I think my dad probably checks it more often than my mom.  I think he uses it to check up on me.  Maybe it’s a sign that he’s worried about me?  Because I’ve been going out so much lately?

Whatever the case, I haven’t yet decided what to do about it.  I can a) Do nothing and let them keep following me, b) Block them (Except I’m not actually sure how to block people from following you on Facebook. Is there an option for that somewhere?), c) Admit defeat and just add them as friends, or d) Add them as friends but with a limited profile (which I think is stupid, you may as well not add a person if you’re not going to let them see anything).

I’ve asked people if they think I should just add them as friends and most of them have told me no.  But I mean I feel like I’m at a point where it wouldn’t be such a bad thing if I did.  I never post anything THAT bad.  I don’t think I’ve posted anything that bad recently while they’ve been following me anyway.  Although yesterday I may have posted about how I missed out on winning gay porn at Celebrities bingo.  But what’s wrong with that?  It’s not like I asked for that to be one of the prizes.  So it’s fine.  Probably the worst thing actually, is the fact that my profile picture right now is of me strewn across the laps of male strippers.  I’m guessing that’s probably not a photo you want to see of your daughter.  Oh well.

I’m wondering if I do add them as friends, would I end up having to censor myself?  I mean, more so than I already do.  And if I did, would that be so bad?  I remember someone once told me that a good rule of thumb is to not post anything on Facebook that you wouldn’t want your grandma to see.  But my grandma would probably let more things slide than my parents.  Speaking of which, I just found out my grandma also has Facebook, but I’m pretty sure she never uses it and isn’t sure how it all works.  I have not added her either, because I generally don’t add family on Facebook.  But I’m considering it.

I was thinking maybe this year, I should just give my parents my friendship on Facebook as a Mother’s Day and Father’s Day present.  That’s probably worth more to them than whatever I might buy them, right?

What do you think?  Would you add your parents on Facebook, or am I crazy for considering it?

What’s the point of Twitter?

When I first joined Twitter, I didn’t understand it.  At all.  It took me a while before I even signed up.  I remember seeing the weird commercial where some guy with an accent was talking about “tweeting” and I thought “what the hell is that all about?”  I was very content with Facebook at the time and saw no need for Twitter.  It was just an unnecessary social media platform that I did not need in my life.  There was no point.

I’m not sure why I finally caved and decided to start a Twitter account.  I don’t remember when I started it.  Two years ago?  Something like that.  I didn’t really use it for the first while that I had it.  I thought it was stupid.  It was basically like Facebook, but with only status updates.  And nothing else.  And you couldn’t even like the statuses, you had to retweet or favourite them.  I couldn’t be bothered with that.  And I wasn’t very good at obtaining followers.  Probably because I didn’t tweet enough to be deemed worthy of following.

I also didn’t like the fact that I was limited to only using 140 characters.  What if I had more to say?  What then?  I hate limitations.  And having to shorten my words.  I try as hard as I possibly can to have proper grammatical sentences, even when using Twitter.  But I found myself having to use “b” instead of “be”, “2day” instead of “today” and “u” instead of “you”.  And sometimes even then, I was over the limit.  I hated it.

Somewhere, somehow, my opinion drastically changed.  I don’t know how or when this happened.  But today, I tweet all the time.  ALL the time.  Maybe it happened about the same time when I began to generate more and more Facebook statuses, more than the average person.  I suppose I then decided that I may as well use those statuses on Twitter as well.  Why not?

It took me a while to figure everything out.  It wasn’t until last year that I finally learned the concept of a hashtag.  And then I went overboard with it.  I didn’t fully understand it.  A few people have mentioned how odd or long my hashtags were at times.  I would just run together a bunch of words at the end of my tweets #whywouldinotdothatitmakesperfectsensetome.

When I first set up the account, my username was @frosty_rain.  Which is lame, I know.  It was based on my email address that I set up back in Grade 8.  When I was lame.  I have since changed it to @d_vaz, because that at least incorporates my initial and last name.  Not that anyone cares either way.  Should I change it again?  Would that confuse people?  It’s better than using my whole name.  Because if I were to make it @dominiquevaz, if someone were to reply to my tweets, they would use up precious characters just typing it in.  Best to keep it short.

I recently wondered whether I should have multiple twitter accounts.  Which I now do.  My main one, and now one for this blog, and one for my other blog.  Which I haven’t really done much with yet.  But @randomandunnews and @whatarewewatch now exist in addition to @d_vaz.  Whether I will do anything with them, is another question.

I still hate the limitations that Twitter has.  I refuse to link my Twitter and my Facebook.  Because I often need to modify my Facebook statuses in order to allow them to fit the 140 character limit on Twitter.  And I don’t want Twitter’s strict character count rule to influence the length of my Facebook updates.  Not going to happen.  But I have learned to deal with the limitation on Twitter.  Because now that I have a blog, I can write however the hell much I want.

To blog or not to blog?

How does one make this decision?  I don’t know how regular bloggers decide on these things.  I wouldn’t really call myself a blogger.  I still feel like I’m not really doing it quite right.  I’m not sure how one would fail at blogging.  But I’m sure I would somehow find a way of doing so.

I’ve recently considered starting another blog.  No, don’t worry, it wouldn’t replace this one. This will still be my primary blog.  I just thought maybe I should supplement it with another, spice things up a bit.  This blog must be lonely being the only one that I write.  It seems only right that I should let it have a friend.  And then they can engage in some friendly competition to see which of them is more popular.  And then things will turn ugly and they’ll hate each other as the competition heats up.  But in the end they’ll come to the sad realization that neither of them are indeed popular.  And then they can once again be friends and keep each other company when no one cares about them or wants to read them.

But since this one is my primary blog, and my first, does that mean I might play favourites?  Perhaps.  Maybe the second one just wouldn’t be able to live up to the pressure.  That would be hard for it to take.  I would pretend to love them equally, but certainly they’ll be able to tell.  If I were to write more on this one and spend more time on it, the other may feel neglected.  It may come to resent me and even wish I had never started it in the first place.  Should I reconsider?  Is one already enough?

Why do I want multiple blogs anyway?  I wouldn’t say I’m bored with this one.  I just want to expand things a bit.  When I started this one, I made it as broad as possible.  When I would say I like writing, people would always ask what I write about and what the subject of my blog would be.  I don’t have a subject.  I didn’t want one.  I didn’t want to be limited, I wanted to be free to write about anything and everything.  But maybe now it’s time to narrow things down, just a little bit.  Hence, a second blog, with a specific topic may be appropriate.

What topic, you ask?  Who knows?  It could be anything really.  But as I’ve been randomly writing posts on this blog, there are certain things I tend to write about often.  I could definitely keep that up and write about them often enough that they could form their own blog.  My friend commented that I’d been doing a few movie reviews as of late.  Perhaps they deserve to have their own blog?  Why should I deny them that right?  They shouldn’t be forced to share space among the other random things that I write, should they?

But then maybe two blogs is just being overambitious.  Maybe I don’t have enough of a following to be dreaming so big right now.  And since I’m so indecisive, how would I decide which blog I should add to on any given day?  The stress of it all just might be the end of me, I don’t know if I could handle all that pressure.  I will probably fail.  But I may as well have two failed blogs as opposed to just one.

Too lazy to blog

Yeah.  I’m sort of forcing myself to do it at the moment.  I feel like I’m reverting back to my old ways.  It took me forever to start a blog in the first place due to laziness.  And then finally starting it made me feel empowered and I was able to write a new post every day for about a week.  And then it became every 2 or 3 days.  And then about once a week.  Now it’s been almost a month since my last post.  Soon I’ll probably forget that I even started a blog in the first place.

I don’t know why I’ve been so unmotivated lately.  Maybe I’ve run out of things to say?  Actually no, I always have things to say.  Maybe run out of interesting things?  Or run out of things that are appropriate for a blog?  I don’t know.  I can’t really pinpoint it.  Maybe it’s because of censorship?  I always have things to say.  They say if you have nothing nice to say, then don’t say anything at all.  I guess I haven’t had a lot of nice things to say lately.

I’ve also been busy lately.  So it’s not all due to laziness.  I’m often not at home.  Where am I and what am I doing?  You know, I’m not actually sure.  It’s strange, I’m always in a rush with many things to do but I’m not really sure what they are.  That’s probably in part due to the fact that my memory often fails me.  Some people say they can’t even remember what they did yesterday.  I can’t even remember what I did today.  Maybe that’s why I feel the need to tweet and facebook everything I do.  It’s like the movie Memento, but instead of using notes and tattoos, I use status updates.

I think I should start blogging again.  Hence this blog post right here.  If not to entertain others, then to remind myself of what’s going on in my life at any given moment.  Another problem is having to share this computer.  Seven people in one house need more than one working computer.  Perhaps I should buy another one.  Although someone would try and use that one as well.  If only the iPad was sufficient for blogging.  Apparently you can buy a keyboard attachment for the iPad.  But then wouldn’t that pretty much turn it into a laptop?  That just seems wrong to me.

Anyway, I suppose the purpose of this post is pretty much to say that I plan to get back in the blogging game.  Although I’m not sure if it’s really a game.  But if it is, I feel like I’m behind right now and need to catch up to the winner.  I’m not sure how to do this.  Blogging everyday is probably too much.  They say go for quality over quantity.  But why can’t I have both?  Some may argue that right now I have neither.  But whatever.  I don’t seem them starting a blog.  A year from now, if I have nothing else, at least I’ll be able to look back and know exactly what I was doing on the night of November 13, 2011.

My dad is probably reading this

So I’m one of those people who has this obsession with social media.  I don’t know why, but there’s just something satisfying about updating my facebook and my twitter an obnoxious amount of times.  It’s a problem, I know.  But nevertheless I continue to do it.  Some people have family members on their facebook while others wouldn’t dare accept their friend requests.  I fall into the latter category.  I don’t have to worry about my mom, as she doesn’t understand facebook or twitter and has referred to herself as “computer illiterate”.  My dad, on the other hand, is a different story.

When my dad first got facebook, he asked me when I was going to send him a friend request.  Jokingly.  Or so I thought.  He would ask why I didn’t want to be his friend.  I’m not sure what my response was, I didn’t really have a good one.  But I figured he wouldn’t use it much and would forget about it.  But I guess I was wrong.  I had my settings set to “friends of friends”.  And it just so happened that we had one mutual friend.  And so the inevitable happened, he sent me a friend request.  I declined it.  I had to.  I just couldn’t have him seeing everything I post, let alone having them fill up his news feed.  It was for his own good that I chose the ignore him.

And then there was twitter.  My tweets are usually pretty much the same as my facebook statuses, just shortened sometimes to meet the 140 character limit.  Yesterday, my dad said to me “You’re on twitter?”.  And I asked why.  And he said he was following me and proceeded to read out a couple of my recent tweets from his phone as I looked on in horror.  I pulled out my own phone and proceeded to read over my last few tweets to see if there was anything bad in there.

At this point I’m not sure what to do.  Do I censor myself and only tweet what I think my dad would find appropriate?  Do I continue to post whatever the hell I want even though I know full well he will be able to read it?  Do I create a separate twitter account and protect my tweets so that he can’t access them?  Do I shut down my account and stop this mad obsession with social media once and for all?  I don’t know.  I’ve never been good at dealing with these tough life decisions.

I don’t think anything I post is actually really all that bad.  It’s pretty clean for the most part.  I mean I have the occasional suggestive status update, but then who doesn’t?  My dad was concerned that future employers would be able to see my posts.  But I’m not planning on being a doctor or a teacher and I’m generally not that inappropriate with what I say, so I think I’ll be okay.  When my dad worries about me I know that it’s because he cares.  The fact that I so frequently post about every random thing in my life actually gives him the opportunity to keep tabs on me if I’m vague about where I’m going and what I’m doing.  Sometimes I don’t let him know but I let the social media world know.  The social media world which he is now a part of.  So it’s actually beneficial for him.  So dad, if you’re reading this, you’re welcome.

My blog title

I spent about two years contemplating whether I should start a blog.  I took a career counselling course last year and when I mentioned that I’ve always wanted to be a writer, the instructor asked me if I’d considered blogging.  I said I’d thought about it but was never able to come up with a good title.  He strongly suggested I start a blog so that I could continue with my writing.  I very nearly took the advice, but the title just would not come.  And so it took a year and a half later for me to finally get this thing started.

Things also got to the point where I began to update my facebook status an obnoxious amount of times everyday.  I remember back when it would only be a couple times a week.  Then it became every couple days.  Then daily.  And now it’s several times a day.  I can’t help it, I have a lot of thoughts which are just dying to be expressed whether people want to hear them or not.  I don’t update my facebook status because I want to, I update my facebook status because I have to.  A fair amount of people told me in person that they liked my updates and so I allowed them to continue.  But I guess at some point I felt limited by one or two sentences at a time.  I felt I needed something more.

But the damn title.  I was never good at those.  I was never good at beginnings or endings.  I’m good at filling in the in between.  Like I could never manage to put together a coherent story, but I always had a hell of a lot of good ideas that could be randomly dispersed throughout.  I wanted to be a screenwriter, but instead of writing the whole screenplay, be a line writer.  Be in charge of providing random witty lines here and there that would make the story that much better.  But sadly I don’t think such a job exists.

I wanted to just called this thing “Dominique’s blog”.  But for some reason my friend told me I couldn’t do that.  She didn’t explain why, she just didn’t approve.  I also thought of “Too lazy to think of a title”.  Or “Blog without a title”.  Or “Stuff”.  Or “My thoughts”.  Yeah, you can see how much I suck at this.

So where did my title come from?  Well, despite the fact that many people like my facebook statuses, there are always those that are highly critical.  One of my friends one day pointed out that I update my facebook status a lot.  He joked that he would block them from his newsfeed because there were just too many.  I remember I had a status that was something like “They no longer had the bacon cheeseburger deluxe at Mcdonalds so I had to settle for a mcdouble, which wasn’t nearly as satisfying”.  Yes, I will admit that was definitely not one of my better updates.  But yes.  Upon reading that he asked if I thought that was really newsworthy.

The stuff I tend to post is also pretty random.  And not just on facebook.  I send random texts to people all the time, just things that I think are funny or that they will appreciate.  Random thoughts are constantly going through my head and some of them I feel the need to share.  But not everyone appreciates my humour.  But that’s okay.  Enough people do that I can justify it.  A problem I had is that I have no specific category.  Some people blog about food, or travel, or movies.  Mine really are just completely random.  Anything goes.  I am not confined to any one topic.  I love being random.

And so I realized that most of what I write is both random and unnewsworthy.  Some people like it, some people don’t.  And that’s fine.  To each their own.  The things I talk about really aren’t newsworthy, they are not essential, no one really needs to be informed about my thoughts.  I am simply here to provide entertainment to those who happen to be interested in what I have to say.  I’m glad I finally found myself a blog title.  The hard part is over.  Now I just need to come up with a title for each new post I write.  Damnit.