TikTok’s latest trend encourages delusional thinking. Is it healthy?

‘Staying delulu is the solulu’ has taken center stage in the ever-evolving world of TikTok trends

The phrase “staying delulu is the solulu” has taken center stage in the ever-evolving world of TikTok trends. A shortened version of “delusional,” this concept encourages individuals to adopt an unrealistic yet optimistic mindset to achieve their goals.

Although some believerssay being delusional can solve all their problems, mental health experts caution against relying solely on this way of thinking.

“Delulu” originated in K-pop fandom communities in 2013, according to Today.com. It described overzealous fans who believed they would have a romantic or platonic relationship with their idol. Now, the term has been co-opted by Gen Z and millennials as a form of manifestation.


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“In this generation, I believe that being delusional is one of the key factors to be happy,” TikTok user Moses Wong said in a video. “Remember guys, staying delulu is the solulu (solution). Think positive.”

Embracing delulu, according to Today.com, gives some permission to go after what they want. Demo Gakidis, a 31-year-old from New York working in tech, told the website he thinks “belief is very powerful” and it “allows you to do so much and it gives you the energy to keep going as well. We have a limited time on earth, why not do things for yourself?”

Although positive thinking can be beneficial, Dr. Rachel Hoffman, a licensed clinical social worker, cautioned Verywell Mind that tying one’s mental health or self-esteem to delusional thinking can be harmful. She describes it as emotional self-gratification, where individuals fantasize about future outcomes without taking necessary actions to make them a reality.

Ultimately, a healthy approach to “delulu” thinking involves believing in one’s goals while also taking necessary steps to make them a reality, experts at Verywell Mind said. They advised practicing self-reflection and gratitude, and embracing emotions.