Self-Image | what is?

A Self-Image is in its most basic form an internalized mental picture/idea you have of yourself. It’s how you think and feel about yourself based on your appearance, performance and relationships that consistently impacts your outlook on life as well as your level of happiness and fulfillment.

It’s an impression you have of yourself that has formed over a lifetime that forms a collecting representation of your beliefs, assets, liabilities, and labels describing your personal attributes and characteristics. For instance you might say:

I am intelligent… therefore I can…

I am a loser… therefore I believe I can’t…

I am outgoing… therefore I am able to…

I am shy… therefore I am unable to…

These are just some of the examples of the many labels you potentially give yourself and the inevitable conclusions you may reach. And it is these conclusions you make about yourself that either form the foundations of a healthy self-image or an unhealthy self-image.

It’s important to note that your self-image is not something that is based on reality; in fact, far from it. In actuality your self-image is built upon your perception of reality and that is influenced by how you believe you’re being viewed by society and other people. For example, a person with anorexia may have a self-image that makes them believe they are obese, however in reality that is far from the truth.

Your self-image is something that gradually develops over a lifetime of experience, thought, learning and societal influences. It is however something that is constantly changing over time as you gain more life experience, as you think and reflect, as you learn, and as you interact with other people.

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