A little narcissism never hurt anyone

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by Jose Gutierrez

The world is a mighty cruel place. It seems that no matter where you turn, you’re perpetually subjected to harsh scrutiny and criticism. If it isn’t that one nagging aunt who keeps commenting about you, it’s you acting as your own biggest critic. In this world, it’s far too easy to succumb to feelings of low-worth, which eventually manifest into poor performance.

What could possibly be the remedy for such disheartenment? A healthy dose of narcissism.

I know, I know. We already have a reputation for being the most narcissistic generation in recent history. That in itself is a prime example of how everybody loves to tear us apart. Simply existing becomes an open invitation to be reviewed like a movie on Rotten Tomatoes.

But if you’re gonna act like a critic, then I am too and I’m giving myself a 96 percent certified-fresh rating. I really don’t care if it reinforces the notion that this generation is completely self-absorbed—in fact, I hope it does.

So why promote self-glorification as if it were a medicinal cure for low worth? Because it works.

I don’t think there’s ever been a day in my life when anyone has ever told me brown eyes are beautiful. Because after years of struggling with low self-esteem and not living up to expectations of what I should be, I decided to start walking with my head held high.

It took me one short summer break to delude myself into believing I am worth a damn. In fact, it took one episode of “America’s Next Top Model.” Tyra Banks must’ve told the contestants something along the lines of “You’ve got to fake it until you make it.” Well why not?

Seeing as it was born out of an illusion of adequacy, my initial confidence was artificial. It started out with simple things, such pampering myself with expensive cosmetics and finally wearing that one striped sweater out in public. Eventually, little baby steps turned into full-fledged catwalk struts. Although they never looked like struts, they sure as hell felt like it.

Obviously I know I’m not perfect. I don’t even think I live up to most standards half the time, but that does not faze me anymore. But the day I began praising my existence was the day I ended a long-term relationship with depression. Truthfully, it still rings me up on the phone every so often, but I don’t answer anymore.

I have my flaws and I graciously accept them, but this little dose of narcissism I take every morning with my well-balanced breakfast fuels me more than any energy drink (pun unintended).

But just like any other medication, try not to overdose.

While I worship the very ground I walk on, I still know the world doesn’t cater to me, nor will it ever. There’s probably not a single person in this world who wakes thinking of me. I wonder if I’ve ever been someone’s crush.

I’m not royalty by any means, nor am I entitled to sit on any throne. I also realize in the face of adversity, I‘ve always stood alone. On the cloudiest of days, not even my shadow stands beside me. I learned this long ago: you can only depend on yourself.

Against all the sticks and stones the world has thrown at me, I still stand. My heart never stopped beating just because I wanted it to.

So I’m sorry Galileo if for as long as I am alive, I believe the sun revolves around me.

I am my own savior.