InsinceritySaying things that you don't mean. For example, flattering people to try to gain social or economic advantages.
Social StatusBeing concerned with what people think as opposed to deeper realities such as values, relationships, self-fulfillment and the human experience. For example, abandoning a friend because they are suddenly unpopular.
MaterialismMaterialism is the prioritization of physical things over intangible things. For example, someone who spends all their time and energy thinking about shoes. This is commonly accused of being superficial as intangible elements of the human experience such as relationships with people are considered "deeper" than physical products.
BiasesBiases are flawed judgements that are typically incorrect and unfair. For example, making assumptions about people based on how they look.
PosingPosing is the act of pretending that you're something that you're not. In some cases, posing actually leads somewhere positive based on a strategy known as fake it till you make it whereby you have to pretend to fit in before you actually do. For example, the first time anyone dances in front of people they may pretend to know what they are doing.
Virtue SignallingAttempting to look like a virtuous person by communicating support for issues without actually doing much to actually change the world. In its worst forms, virtue signalling involves aggressively pointing out other people's failings or weaknesses in a self-righteous manner to try to position yourself as morally superior.
MediocrityMediocrity is a pathetic state whereby an individual is only interested in safety, entertainment, comfort and convenience. The mediocre seek the safety of the group and are very concerned with appearing "normal" for fear of being socially isolated. For this reason, they may shun anything or anyone that they perceive as outside their group.
NotesThe word superficial always has negative connotations when referring to human behavior. However, it is a judgement call whether a particular behavior is superficial or not. For example, one observer may feel that an extremely fashionable person must be superficial while another might view fashion as an worthy element of the human experience such that fashionable people are admirable. This judgement is often clouded by biases such as sour grapes.The word superficial can also refer to something that is physically shallow. For example, a superficial cut is a cut that isn't deep.
Opposite of SuperficialThe following can be considered antonyms of superficial, depending on the context.
The prioritization of appearances over realities.
An entity that is shallow such that it is not deep.
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