Why you can’t stop perusing your Facebook profile
How often do you check out your Facebook profile? If considering that question makes you blush—or raises the uncomfortable notion that you’re a narcissist—relax: You’re acting on an impulse that is as basic as it is benign.
New research suggests that all that rereading, revising, and updating satisfies the fundamental human need to feel good about yourself, and your place in society. This reassurance and sense of security is a vital psychological resource, and Facebook may be the easiest, most convenient way to provide it yet been devised.
No wonder the social network has accumulated over one billion members over nine years.
“We do not claim this explains all of Facebook’s popularity,” said University of Wisconsin scholar Catalina Toma, who conducted the research with Cornell University psychologist Jeffrey Hancock. “But we are showing that people turn to Facebook to meet a psychological need, and that it works.