Self-image is the way that we see ourselves and how we think other’s see us; almost like a mental picture, it is the manner we perceive ourselves to be and what our abilities and capabilities are. It is usually created by past experiences. Not to be confused with Self-esteem which is how we see our self worth, beliefs, these are usually caused by achievements or failure during school.
To improve your Self-image means to change the way you portray yourself in front of the mirror of your heart and how you see or observe the things that surround you. It provides a mental image of your own true self and explains how some factors that are surrounding the body of you affect your mental state. A self-image can be positive or negative, it is a certain type of dictionary that is present within our own minds and explains what the key words that describe us in character are.
Here are some ways we can create a better self-image.
1. Learn what is positive about you
Always try to look for the positive things about yourself and around you, try to implement in yourself those same exact concepts, meaning to bring them to life by embracing your strengths and not your weaknesses.
2. List your positive qualities
This is very important because it will help you realize that there are several good qualities within you and your character. For example, if you like to help someone that is struggling or feel the need to speak up when something isn’t right. Those are very positive qualities, which when used correctly can impact the lives of others significantly.
3. Interact with other people
This will help instil the good qualities that are already within you. They are more likely to provide a much more honest picture of your character and self-image when you are with others. Try asking a few friends what they think your best qualities are, I know it’s probably a bit embarrassing, this will give you clues to finding out much more about yourself and your strengths, things i’m sure you would have never considered.
4. Know your goals
List your goals (small and realistic goals at first) and then observe what impact it has on you confidence and self-image. Reaching even small goals can significantly impact your self-image and give you the drive to continue onto larger goals as well as help you learn more about yourself and your limits. Not to mention how much positivity is really present within you.
By Confrontation I mean, confronting your negative emotions or thoughts. To do this I like to use Mindfulness Meditation to help focus on and thought patterns and try to eliminate them as a whole or improve them by diminishing them by changing your belief within your self-image. Put simply, change the reason why these thoughts have a negative impact on you and assign a new meaning to them.
You can do this by simply drilling down and finding the root cause for the feeling (this is where you have to be very honest with yourself), then accept and understand the feelings and eventually try to justify it by changing your perspective on the thought (try to see it from a different light). I like to imagine what a role model of mine would think in such a situation.
Always try to make sure that you do not compare yourself to other people, this is very hard but also extremely important, because if someone is better than you, then you will lower your self-esteem. This is not fair on yourself, because you do not always see the full picture of the other person ( for example, they might have had family difficulties as a child and spent all their time practicing … )
Another thing I would recommend would be that, if you are someone with a low self-esteem and you are easily impacted by the accomplishments of others ( here you need to be honest with yourself again!) then it is best to take yourself away from situations that leave you feeling such emotions (ie. social media )
7. Practice your strengths
Always try to make sure that once you identify what your good qualities and your strengths are, try to polish them as much as possible, this will help you improve yourself and be a better person with more confidence and a better self-image.
8. Learn to love yourself
Ok, it sounds a bit weird, but honestly how can you expect to improve how you feel about yourself if you don’t love yourself. I’m not talking about going selfie crazy, just learn to appreciate what you already have and how that makes you unique. We are too quick to criticize ourselves for having bad luck or not being good enough at something, but somehow forget all the amazing things we are capable of.
Sure enough, we have all done things that we aren’t proud of, but that is how we learn. Moving on from your past is one of the best things you can do.
Here is a breakdown
- What is positive about you
- List your positive qualities
- Interact with others
- Know your goals
- Practice your strengths
- Love yourself