look at me, I'm special!

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I read this interesting article today, entitled: Study: College students more narcissistic. Being a recent college graduate myself, I have noticed the inward and “me-focused” attitude that many of my peers – and even myself – sport.

Today’s college students are more narcissistic and self-centered than their predecessors, according to a comprehensive new study by five psychologists who worry that the trend could be harmful to personal relationships and American society.

“We need to stop endlessly repeating ‘You’re special’ and having children repeat that back,” said the study’s lead author, Professor Jean Twenge of San Diego State University. “Kids are self-centered enough already.”…

The study asserts that narcissists “are more likely to have romantic relationships that are short-lived, at risk for infidelity, lack emotional warmth, and to exhibit game-playing, dishonesty, and over-controlling and violent behaviors.”…

The new report follows a study released by UCLA last month which found that nearly three-quarters of the freshmen it surveyed thought it was important to be “very well-off financially.” That compared with 62.5 percent who said the same in 1980 and 42 percent in 1966.

There’s a lot that scares me about the current generation, especially because I can see so many examples of it in myself. I often catch myself with the “poor me” attitude, and often thinking of myself as superior. Driving is a big thing for me – I constantly get annoyed with inconsiderate drivers, thinking to myself, “They’re not considerate like I am. More people should be like me.”

And after some friends of mine divorced, I thought, “I can’t wait until I’m married so I can show them the right way to do marriage.”

I think being a Christian helps contribute to these thoughts, on my part. (I wouldn’t say so for the rest of the generation!) Believing in absolutes means that I feel I have found the right way to do things and everyone else is wrong. Of course, to a certain extent it’s true – I do believe that those who accept Christ as their Savior go to heaven, and those who don’t are going to hell. However, I tend to apply the same mentality to the more gray areas of the Christian life, which is not the right way to think. “Well I’ve read the Bible and I know the right way to handle that [gray area].” The tendency to judge is a common fault of Christians, unfortunately.

The thing that scares me the most is that in a few years, we’ll be talking about starting a family and bringing children into this world. We’ll be responsible for their upbringing and their attitudes. I want them to grow up to be good, strong Christians who live the life that Christ wants of them. In general, I see a lot of problems with today’s generation, and I am scared that with so many negative influences all around us it’s going to be difficult to keep those negative aspects from permeating. At the same time, I don’t want to cut ourselves off completely from the world like the Amish have. It’s a difficult balance, and something we are going to have to pray about and deal with once we DO have children.

Anyways, just some thoughts for this morning. :-)