You are probably aware that “selfie” was named word of the year by Oxford Dictionary for the year 2013. This created a platform for all kinds of jokes on every type of show on TV and the internet. And while I could miss a selfie here or there by myself or other people, I know there are also valuable uses for the selfie – though sharing them may not always be the value. Stars probably have the best selfies, though the comments left for stars are rarely the types of things we would say to our friends.
Here are ten ways we can utilize the selfie in 2014 to make our lives better:
- TRACKING MOLES – Take selfies of any mole or spot on your body to track its progress or lack of change. I would go one step further with this and recommend the app, “Mole Detective” which recently played a large part in getting me to see a Dermatologist and subsequently a surgeon to remove a pre-cancerous spot on my ankle. The app allows you to take a picture of the spot, measure it and enter the details about the mole as it detects irregular edges, and depth and variations in the color. The app sets a reminder date to recheck the mole and will not stop until you actually take action~! What a wonderful thing for a procrastinator like me. It was not until I had this experience that I realized the other side of a cancerous mole gone bad is your bloodstream. I was told that if these spots are let go, you don’t just have more skin removed as I thought in wider areas; no, the cancerous poison goes out through your blood and goes everywhere in a very aggressive manner. The great thing about this is that you can normally see it unless it is on your scalp, where they often grow. Other common growth sites are the bottom of the feet, ankles, nose and ears. I would like to add that my spot itched. When you consider it was very fast cell division, it makes sense that it itched. These were some of the things that nagged me and saved my life even before it was in jeopardy. I hope it will do the same for you. This is a definite *SNAP THAT SELFIE*.
- TRACKING SKIN CARE PROGRESS – The way science works is by observation. All of the advances made in skin care were by careful study. The great thing about this is that you don’t have to be a scientist to notice changes in your skin. If you start a new skin care regimen or product for a specific area’s treatment, it is a smart idea to track your progress. This is extremely easy with the use of the selfie. Try to take the picture from the same distance, angle, background, time of day/lighting each time, every week. It’s easy to miss subtle changes if you don’t track them. Celebrate these changes~! Also, if you are not seeing changes, you will know that particular product is not working for you, so you don’t need to devote months of money, time and effort into a product that did not show you results, personally. After all, nothing works for everyone all the time. Just don’t post these for your friends, maybe, but a product that is working for you – especially if it is a ModelSupplies product – please send us a copy~! You will most likely get some sort of reward that will add to your feeling of accomplishment and make us very grateful.
- TRACKING WEIGHT LOSS / MUSCLE GAIN – This “selfie” might actually be better if it is taken by a friend or partner so you can get the correct angle – which is straight up and down, level. I cannot tell you how often to take this type of selfie, but I can tell you it is very rewarding to see your body change and morph into what you want to accomplish no matter how long it takes. Do the same, take it regularly, note the date, try to get the same backgrounds and lighting, even the same clothes!~ You may like to credit a fitness guru or particular diet with your success and this can be very rewarding. Maybe you can even be a spokesperson for a product or inspire others to make positive changes in their lives as well. This type of photo pops up every now and then in a timeline and it almost always looks pretty self-serving, showing the phone in the mirror, maybe some abs, we have all seen this type of selfie. I am suggesting you keep them for your own use. Maybe after you have enough of them, you can create a flip book or slideshow. How fun will it be to see yourself morph into the fabulous specimen you have become?
- RECOVERY & REHABILITATION - If you have been in any type of accident, surgery or had any kind of injury to your self, it might be nice to track your progress with the use of selfies. For example, I am developing a new scar treatment right now and using my surgical site from the removal of the pre-cancerous spot as the subject. Taking pictures of this area reinforces the healing taking place in my mind, too. I can see how the formula is working and after the scar fades away, I can look back and see how far I have come, using these selfies as a source of gratitude for my life. These may be selfies you wish to share, but I would suggest waiting until you have gone considerably far toward your goal of healing. It helps your self esteem later, if you have a difficult moment in your life, to look back and realize you came through that hard time, surely you are strong enough to come through this one as well.
- YOGA / WORKOUTS – I don’t want to suggest the use of this kind of selfie for the ego; that is not the goal. It would be counterproductive. This type of selfie would be more to measure your progress. Sometimes it’s easy to forget how far you have come in any type of exercise program. With yoga, there will be poses it may take years to attain, so take a picture when you get there~! This is not so you can brag to your friends, no. This is for your own personal growth and you might consider it to be a very personal type of picture or a piece of art. I remember a time when I could barely bend over to brush my teeth in the morning. Now, my hands reach flat on the ground showing flexible arteries and proving why my blood pressure is so wonderfully normal. I can do the splits after a year or so of practice at age 50~! I want to see a picture of that in 20 years. Will I still be able to do them? Will I be able to do even more?
- BRACES / DENTAL WORK – Another thing I am documenting privately is the progress of my braces – which has been astonishingly quick. I found it difficult to explain what happened to my teeth, mainly because I’m not really sure. It was even more difficult to explain the severity of the sudden gaps that began to grow at age 48. My tongue was pushing my teeth out of my mouth while I slept. Probably stress. But I found myself more and more showing a picture as an explanation when people would ask. They instantly understand why I have braces at age 50 and the progress is remarkable. This also allows me to spread the word that your teeth are not always going to stay still. I did not have braces as a child, so it was quite a shock to suddenly need them. I heard from many people who did have braces as a child, that they were given retainers to keep their teeth in place and need to keep the retainer updated. I let my experience serve as a warning to others to wear their retainer or look into getting one. It will also make a nice personal slideshow when this journey has ended.
- TRACKING HAIR GROWTH OR LOSS – When you are regrowing hair on your scalp or brows or beard, it helps to take a baseline selfie so you know where you started. Again, be sure to keep as much of the atmosphere the same as possible to ensure integrity of the progress. Here again, you are taking action to make a change, so you should track the progress so you can look after your investment of time and money. It’s easy to overlook tiny sprouts that were not there previously. For this type of selfie, I would suggest taking them even more frequently, however, since the average growth cycle of a brow or eyelash hair, for example, is 60 days. The positive reinforcement you feel when you see your progress will encourage more growth. If you are continuing to lose hair, this could be a sign of a medical condition and these pictures could help your doctor form a diagnosis.
- DOCUMENTING ABUSE – This is a darker subject than I normally broach, but this is sadly not that uncommon of a problem, so I feel it should be mentioned here. If someone hurts you, you should take a picture of it. Get a free account at Dropbox.com so you can store the photos on a cloud that is accessible from any location, smartphone or computer. No one can rip them up or delete them. They are your evidence. You should look hard at these pictures, understand you absolutely do not deserve this and tell yourself all the time, “I deserve loving, peaceful relationships” as you change your situation.
- DOCUMENTING LOVELY MOMENTS – Capture your precious moments just like the old days – weddings, birthday parties, reunions, joyous occasions – but do it as a selfie, too. You have more control over the way the picture is taken and which is chosen to keep or delete. This is the most obvious of the suggestions, but I think there is something special about a picture snapped with your own hand as opposed to the photographer. Don’t get me wrong, professional photos are extremely important, but the selfies capture an element of fun and freedom of expression as long as you don’t get too tied to the end result. Remember, you don’t have to send it automatically to Instagram every single time.
- PREVIEW CLOTHES FOR SPECIAL OCCASION – You have a special event coming up, but not sure what to wear? Try on your picks and take a pic~! Have you ever tried on 3 different outfits only to wonder what the first one looked like and had to put it on again? Save time and get a more accurate representation of your image by taking selfies – or having someone else take them. You can even try the same outfit with different shoes a few times and not have to do it over and over again~! Have you been there? I sure have!~ Maybe you share the winning outfit. Everyone loves a winning outfit ;-)
Document your life. Just don’t post it all the time ;-) Technology gives us wonderful tools to make our lives fuller, easier and longer. Let’s use them in 2014 like never before~!
Anita Nelson | ModelSupplies on eBay, Etsy & Amazon