Can selfies improve our physical self-image?  I asked myself this very question after one of those epically great selfies; the kind that makes you look twice and ask “is that me?”

To get briefly technical:

Self-image is how you perceive yourself. A person's self-image is the mental picture, usually resistant to change, that depicts not only details that are potentially available to objective investigation by others (height, weight, hair color, gender, I.Q. score, etc.), but also items that have been learned by that person about himself or herself, either from personal experiences or by internalizing the judgments of others. A simple definition of a person's self-image is their answer to the question "What do you believe people think about you?".

I’ve never considered myself beautiful, my mother was always very critical of me as an adolescent and I internalized a great deal of her words for many years. Boys rarely chased me and a select few really sweet guys wrote me love notes or professed their undying teenage crush status to me, but I viewed those as personality not physically driven. Though I’ve kissed half a dozen boys, I’ve only had two real serious relationships my entire life and they affirmed my attractiveness, but I believed their judgement was biased by love.

Truth be told, I didn’t fully aspire to be beautiful in my teen or even college years, I wanted to be great. Chasing beauty and sex appeal was, in my opinion, a waste of efforts better spent dominating the world. I don’t know that I have had low self-esteem, I just always saw myself as beautiful in other ways. I thought my laughter was infectious. That my incredible nerdom for comic books, science fiction, Victorian lit, and history was endearing. I don’t practice codependency and I'm a fierce monogamist.  I’m a darn good kisser and a skilled conversationalist as well.

Anyone that follows my Instagram knows I take a great many selfies. Oddly enough, that is a byproduct of supply and demand. I noticed that people were more engaged within my networks and my blog support grew the more I posted images of myself. Though this is likely driven by a desire for more hair pictures, because I’m not twig thin nor do I wear the most interesting and edgy Parisian fashions. Nonetheless, I found people really affirmed and encouraged the external part of my beauty.

Not, to discount the professions of my man, who tells me I’m incredibly beautiful and breathtakingly sexy (wierdo) almost every day. Even when he says it, I look at him like he’s crazy and think “LOVE really distorts reality!” (LOL)

This whole experience that I’ve jokingly termed, Chronic Selfie Disorder, has forced me to acknowledge that I might be considered pretty in a main stream sense. WEIRD!

The word pretty alone is not a source of confidence or validation, but it is something that maybe a girl should be allowed to say or feel about herself, no matter what she looks like. And maybe those obnoxious selfies allows us her to do that.