Self Image

Self-image is how you perceive yourself. It represents the number of self-impressions that have built up over time.  For example, your self image might reflect your view of "What you have accomplished in your life", "What are your hopes and dreams?", "What do you think and feel?", "How you perceive your friends or family see you".  These self-images can be very positive, therefore giving a person confidence in their thoughts and actions.  Or these self-images can be negative, therefore making a person doubtful of their capabilities and ideas.

Surprisingly, your self-image can be very different from how the world sees you. Some people who outwardly seem to have it all (intelligence, looks, personal and financial success) may have a bad self-image. Conversely, others who have had a very difficult life and multiple hardships may also have a very positive self-image.

In today’s society it seems we’re judged on how we look, what we wear, and the image we personify. Others around you would have you believe that your value and appearance will determine how far you go in life as you move up the social ladder. This starts the first day of grade school and carries forward through out the rest of your life. Self perception and your overall appearance determine how you feel about yourself and how you think others view you. If you think your image is flawed or unacceptable it can be very easy to become depressed, place undue stress on yourself, and increase your anxiety level.

Issues about our body image and appearance are so prevalent in society, that it’s a rarity I see a client who doesn’t have some type of body concern. People tell me they’re too heavy, too thin, don’t have the right smile, walk funny, have big thighs, and the list goes on. The media barrage we see everyday teach us that success, happiness, and status are all tied to our having an attractive image. Can you tell me, when was the last time you saw an ugly newscaster? There is and underlying belief that having the perfect body will bring us all that we ever hope to achieve and acquire.

It all becomes very clear that continued thoughts like this can be detrimental, leading to depression, anxiety and other issues when you find yourself answering YES to many of the questions I’ve outlined below.

▪   Does your looks determine your mood?

▪   Are you concerned how others view your appearance?

▪   Do you find your thoughts constantly dwelling on losing weight?

▪   Are you always trying different diets and weight loss programs?

▪   Do you think you’d be happier, have better relationships, and more success if you were thinner, had a perfect smile, and a more toned physique?

▪   Are you critical of yourself for lack of having more control over your body and appearance?

▪   Do you avoid social situations when you’re not feeling great about your appearance?

▪   Do you focus on your weight/appearance more than most other aspects of your life?

Clients I work with realize that these types of thoughts are not logical, but when asked, really don’t have any idea how to change it. How easily lost is the fact that our self worth and value lies within, not just our appearance. As an experienced counselor I am dedicated to providing you the best possible counseling. Using proven techniques I will work with you to identify the best methods for helping you turn your present beliefsystem around so that your thoughts become ingrained to counter the negativity you encounter every day and help you build the right thought processes you can rely on to maintain the happiness you deserve.

 

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