It seems we all want to know how to improve self-esteem these days.
Life can be hard. And who is usually hardest on you? Yourself. There’s that negative voice in your head criticizing you. And sometimes you can’t shut it up.
So the answer is to boost your self-esteem, right? We’ve seen an explosion of this kind of thinking lately, that self-esteem is the answer to everything.
But it’s had some negative effects on the world too — like an epidemic of narcissism.
This emphasis on high self-esteem at all costs has also led to a worrying trend toward increasing narcissism. Twenge and colleagues examined the scores of more than fifteen thousand college students who took the Narcissistic Personality Inventory between 1987 and 2006. During the twenty-year period, scores went through the roof, with 65 percent of modern-day students scoring higher in narcissism than previous generations.
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