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You spend hours crafting the perfect Tinder profile—a bio that proves you’re humorous and successful without coming off as pompous, and the right array of photos that show you’re athletic and fun sans the shirtless selfie. But, is all this effort merely smoke and mirrors for underlying insecurity? Seems like it, according to a new study from the American Psychological Association.
Researchers suggest Tinder-using guys are more likely to suffer from lower levels of self-worth. So, you can come off confident as hell holding a 45-pound bass on your friend’s boat; but you might be more insecure than you let on.
In the study, researchers had 1,044 women and 273 men (mostly undergrad students) complete questionnaires that polled them on their Tinder use as well as their body image, perceived objectification, and psychological wellbeing.
In all, about 1 in 10 participants admitted to using Tinder. And those who did turned out to be far more self-conscious and insecure than those who didn’t.
“We found that being actively involved with Tinder, regardless of the user’s gender, was associated with body dissatisfaction, body shame, body monitoring, internalization of societal expectations of beauty, comparing oneself physically to others, and reliance on media for information on appearance and attractiveness,” co-author Jessica Strübel, Ph.D. said in a press release.
There’s an important takeaway here, too. While, ladies are more apt to take their time when deciding on a potential match, guys tend to be much more liberal with their right-swiping—to their downfall (read: The Worst 9 Online Dating Mistakes You’re Making). Naturally, this results in lots of rejection. Have you ever seen a guy get his shot blocked in the NBA? See how sad he looks? Try getting that treatment several times over in one Tinder session. It takes a toll on your ego.
Now, we’re not saying to delete your Tinder account and go tech-free. But we do suggest you do a little internal confidence boosting. Check out 5 Ways to Restore Your Confidence After it Takes a Hit and 16 Ways to Feel More Confident.
Hey, convince your boys to get off the app and go out to a bar or a concert where there are, you know, real women you can talk to face to face.
And don’t panic: Since Tinder is linked to your Facebook that means your Frisbee-tossing, beer-drinking beach avatar will be saved for when and if you decide to return.