Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Selfies - The Good, The Bad And The Dangerous - Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein Urges Caution

As a Positive Psychologist, Dr. Holstein believes it is vitally important for women to take charge of both the living and recording of their lives. The selfie is both a reflection and a record of that opportunity. There are inherent dangers however

Everywhere we look today we see 'selfies'. The most famous 'selfie' ever taken, a celebrity explosion taken by Ellen Degeneres at the Oscars, made worldwide headlines. Others did not fare so well. Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein, Positive Psychologist and prolific published author, has made the case for the selfie. While many believe the selfie comes only under the heading of innocent fun, Dr. Holstein believes it can serve to help build esteem and to help record our lives. Used inappropriately, however, it can have undesired consequences. What is the difference?

"A selfie," Dr. Holstein stated "of yourself engaging in wildly inappropriate behavior is what we call in psychology, sliding down the developmental ladder.  It can be fun and feel good to do silly things when we are in our private worlds.  There, to regress is okay and can be even healthy. But to take a selfie of yourself when you are in your private space and then to put it out on the Internet or Facebook, Istagram, etc. can be dangerous.  Why? Because it shows you in a regressed state and it is out there forever.  When you go for a job, what pops up first?"

"On the other hand, using the selfie concept to share with loved ones of friends pictures of yourself traveling, celebrating, or anything that is age appropriate can be good for your mental health and the others in your life.  Metaphorically you are now able to hold hands across the miles. For example, the moment you hold your newly adopted new puppy in your arms, as he lovingly licks your face, can be engaging and feel good to all concerned.  You won't lose a job because you just adopted a pet!  Lastly, privately using selfies to record a diary, a record of your life that brings you satisfaction, as I have mentioned in a recent article on yourtango is very healthy.  Never before have we had such a quick way to visually capture meaningful moments and memories that enhance our own mental health."

Dr. Holstein is a prolific writer who crosses genres with ease. Dr. Holstein's book for teens and tweens, ‘The Truth, (I’m a girl, I’m Smart and I Know Everything)’ is a first in using fiction for positive psychology. It is a fictional diary for girls, tweens and teens. Written by an 11 year old girl as a diary, Dr. Barbara has embedded within the story positive truths and concepts geared to help girls develop self-esteem and resiliency. Sky Pony Press will be publishing an expanded version of  The Truth in the summer of 2014.

Her second book in The Truth Series is 'Secrets: You Tell Me Yours and I’ll Tell You Mine…Maybe!’  Now the girl is 13. She handles many adolescent issues, including a crush, moving, a death in the family, feeling fat and problems with girlfriends.  'Secrets' provides a book kids and parents and grandparents can share and use as a sounding board for needed communication between the generations.

Both 'The Truth' and 'Secrets' are great for grandparents, older siblings and teachers to establish lines of communication with the tweens in their lives. Both books will be re-released by Sky Pony Press.

Dr. Holstein believes that getting in touch with your strengths, talents and potential at every age, as well as learning how to hold on to the wise, playful, happy, gutsy and energetic girl that still resides within each woman is essential for mental health.

To assist this process she has written many books, including: case study material as presented in The Enchanted Self, A Positive Therapy;  inspirational stories as presented in Recipes for Enchantment, The Secret Ingredient is YOU! and romance, mystery books designed to bring fun, excitement, romance and positive psychological truths into women's lives.  Latest books are:  Parts 1 and 2 of Next Year in Jerusalem! available in paper and as e-books;  Parts 1,2 and 3 of Next Year in Jerusalem! are now available, incorporated into Around Every Corner on Kindle.

In addition to running a thriving practice, Dr. Holstein is a very successful author. She is available for media interview and can be reached using the information below or by email at drbarbara@enchantedself.com. All of her works are available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and all other online retailers. More information is available at her website at http://www.NewRomanceBooks.com.


Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein, internationally known Positive Psychologist is the creator of The Enchanted Self ®, a positive psychology method for increasing happiness.  Dr. Holstein has been a school psychologist for over 25 years. She is in private practice in Long Branch, New Jersey with her husband, Dr. Russell M. Holstein.

Dr. Barbara speaks regularly on radio programs around the country, and appears on television in New York and New Jersey. Her inspiring audio shows and podcasts can be found on the web, along with hundreds of her articles and stories. She has been a contributor to Heart and Soul, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Redbook, Real Simple, The Wall Street Journal, Time on line, and Family Circle Magazine.

Her pathfinder book ‘The Enchanted Self, A Positive Therapy’ was published in 1997 by Harwood Academic Publishers and is now in its second printing through Brunner-Routledge. Her second book ‘Recipes for Enchantment, The Secret Ingredient is YOU!’ has received rave reviews as a wonderful inspirational story book. ‘DELIGHT’, Dr. Holstein’s third book is available in two versions, paperback and a CD-rom that includes music, art, and Dr. Holstein’s voice.

Other works include ‘The Truth, (I’m a girl, I’m Smart and I Know Everything)’, 'Secrets: You Tell Me Yours and I’ll Tell You Mine…Maybe!’, and 'Around Every Corner: Romance And Mystery . . . '


Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein
170 Morris Ave.,
Long Branch, New Jersey 07740
Twitter: @truth4girls