A new study published in Collabra: Psychology has found that a person’s body morphology does not give a good read of their level of narcissism.
People incorrectly link individuals who are more attractive and who have more muscular bodies to having more narcissistic personality traits. But they are not necessarily linked.
The study found that several body cues were associated with higher perceived narcissism. Those who are generally more attractive, who have larger shoulder-to-hip ratios, smaller waist-to-hip ratios and greater physical strength were viewed as having higher levels of narcissistic admiration and narcissistic rivalry.
Participants could not reliably detect narcissism simply based on the physical traits of research subjects, the study found.
Julia Stern, a researcher at the University of Bremen in Germany, said, “… I am interested in researching first impressions, as they have a surprisingly large impact on future social interactions. I am curious about finding out how people form first impressions about others, on which information they rely their impression and whether the impression is accurate.” Turns out not so accurate.
In other words, stop hating on the gym rats – they’re not any more or less narcissistic than the rest of us.