How can I stop being obsessed with celebrities

Celebrity Worship Syndrome

Celebrity Worship Syndrome has been described as an obsessive-addictive disorder in which a person becomes overly involved and interested (i.e., completely possessed) in the details of a celebrity's personal life. Any person “in public” can be the object of a person's obsession (eg, writers, politicians, journalists), but investigations and prosecutions suggest that it is more from the world of television, film and / or pop music.

Among academic researchers, the term Celebrity Worship (CW) is a term first coined by Lynn McCutcheon and her research colleagues in the early 2000s. However, it is generally believed that the first use of the term Celebrity Worship Syndrome (CWS) in a Daily mail Article by journalist James Chapman reporting on a study carried out by John Maltby and colleagues in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Diseases entitled A clinical interpretation of attitudes and behaviors associated with celebrity worship. “CWS was actually an acronym for the Celebrity Worship Scale used in the study. Chapman also called the behavior of such people Mad Icon Disease (apparently a piece about Mad Cow Disease that was high on the news agenda in the UK at the time).

Despite the (presumably) random misnomer, the condition may actually indicate a syndrome (i.e., a collection of abnormal or unusual symptoms that indicate the presence of an undesirable condition). US research by Lynn McCutcheon's team on a small sample using the Celebrity Attitudes Scale in the early 2000s suggested a single "Celebrity Worship" dimension. However, later research by Maltby and his team on much larger samples revealed three independent dimensions of celebrity worship. These were on a continuum and were labeled (i) entertainment social, (ii) intensely personal, and (iii) marginally pathological.

• The entertainment social dimension refers to attitudes in which individuals are drawn to a celebrity because of their perceived ability to entertain and the social focus of conversations with like-minded people.

• The intensely personal dimension refers to people who have intense and compulsive feelings towards a celebrity.

• The borderline pathological dimension refers to individuals who display uncontrollable behavior and fantasies about a celebrity.

Maltby and colleagues have now published numerous articles on celebrity worship and found that there was a link between the pathological aspects of CWS and poor mental health (i.e., more anxiety, more depression, high levels of stress, increased) among UK attendees Illness, poor body image). Most of these studies were done in adults. However, body image studies have also included adolescents and found that there is a link between intense personal celebrity worship and body image in women ages 14-16 (that is, teenage girls who identify with celebrities have a much worse relationship) Body image compared to other groups studied). Research by Maltby's team also seems to suggest that the most celebrity obsessed often suffer from high levels of dissociation and imagination.

Maltby summed up his team's research in an interview with the BBC. He said:

"Data from 3,000 people showed that only about 1% had obsessional tendencies. Around 10% (who tend to be neurotic, tense, emotional, and moody) showed a keen interest in celebrities. Around 14% said they would make special efforts to." read about their favorite stars and connect with people who shared their interests. The other 75% of the population don't care about celebrity lives. In general, the vast majority of people will identify a favorite celebrity, but don't say that they read or think about it all the time. Like most things, it's fine as long as it doesn't take over your life. "

The same article sought other scientific views from a biological point of view. They reported:

“Evolutionary biologists say that it is natural for humans to look up to those who receive attention because they have succeeded in a society. In prehistoric times, this would have meant respecting good hunters and elders. Since hunting is no longer an essential skill today and a long lifespan can be achieved, these traits are no longer revered. Instead, we look to celebrities whose fame and fortune we want to emulate. Evolutionary anthropologist Francesco Gill-White of the University of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia told New Scientist, “It makes sense to evaluate people by how successful they are in the behaviors you want to copy because whoever gets more of them what everyone wants is probably using above average methods'. Dr. However, Robin Dunbar, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Liverpool, said the celebrities below don't necessarily mean they will be viewed as role models. "We're fascinated even if we don't bother to copy them." He said people watched how celebrities behave because they received a lot of wealth from society and people wanted to make sure they were properly invested. "

Research by Maltby and colleagues also shows that CW not only falls within the purview of adolescent women, but affects more than a quarter of the people they interviewed (across the three levels mentioned above). Their paper reported that CW had both positive and negative consequences. People who worshiped celebrities for entertainment and social reasons were more upbeat, outgoing, and happy. Those who worshiped or obsessed with celebrities for personal reasons were more depressed, more anxious, more lonely, more impulsive, more antisocial, and more annoying.