Are you having trouble recalling faces? Could be your big ego! Research suggests that people with poor visual memories have less memory for their surroundings than others who aren’t as self-centered.

  • People who are unable to remember their faces because they only focus on themselves, such as vain ones, ‘don’t know what face it is’
  •  More tests showed narcissism led to poorer visual memory of houses and cars
  • Scientists found that the Zoom app makes it easier for narcissists to see themselves on Zoom.

A study shows that people who have big egos or feel entitled tend to have lower visual memory.

Research suggests that this may be because they are focused on their own faces, which could make it difficult for them to recall objects and faces.

In the study, 1,435 participants were tested for levels of the ‘grandiose narcissism’ personality trait which involves pronounced self-focus, egotism, vanity, a sense of entitlement and a tendency to disregard the needs of others.

Vain people with big egos and a sense of entitlement have poorer visual memories, a study suggests. A stock image is used above [File photo]

Study suggests that vain individuals with large egos and entitlement have lower visual memories. This stock image was used in the above. [File photo]

Before being assigned other tasks, the participants saw briefly 40 pictures of men in the beginning of each of the six experiments. 

These photos were shown again to them, along with 40 others in random order. They were also asked if they’d ever seen the same face previously. The results of those who are more self-centered were less successful than those with more modest backgrounds.

Additional tests revealed that narcissism can also lead to poorer visual memories of common objects, cars, and houses. This was more than just social stimuli like faces. 

They may struggle to remember faces and objects because of the way they focus on themselves, researchers said. A stock image is used above [File photo]

Researchers found that they may have difficulty remembering faces or objects due to the fact that their attention is on them. Above is a stock photo [File photo]

And during an online lecture where participants could see their own face – similar to a Zoom conference call – scientists found the narcissists tended to look at themselves in the webcam more compared to the non-narcissists. They remembered less about lecture content when they were asked afterwards.

‘Devoting attention to oneself may inhibit noticing, recognising or remembering what is happening elsewhere, leaving narcissists particularly prone to miss, and subsequently fail to remember, events occurring around them,’ said the researchers from MacEwan University and the University of Toronto in Canada.

This study was published by the Journal of Personality.