Mirror Mirror on the wall 

- By Akshita Shreya

We all must remember the tale of the Evil Queen from Snow White and her famous dialogue. The question we must ask ourselves is that “why did the Queen need a Magic Mirror to tell her if she was the fairest one of all?” The answer might lie in the concept of self-image.

Self-image refers to how we see ourselves holistically, both internally and externally. Random House Dictionary defines self-image as “the idea, conception, or mental image one has of oneself.” The way you picture yourself when you look in the mirror is your self-image. 

There are three elements of a person’s self-image:

A person who lacks self-confidence relies on other people’s interpretations and thus lives in an illusion. The closer our self-image and ideal-self are to each other, the more consistent or congruent we are, and the higher our sense of self-worth. On the other hand, inconsistency between the self-image and ideal self leads to feelings of anxiety and maladjustment. Each one of us is born unique and when we fancy others’ possessions be it physical or materialistic, we are diminishing our unique identity.

There are six dimensions of a person’s self-image:

“अप्प-दीपो-भव” We need to be our own guiding light. It is important that we value ourselves first. A positive self-image can boost our physical, mental, social, emotional, and spiritual well-being. On the other hand, a negative self-image can decrease our satisfaction and ability to function in these areas and can cause harm like self-image disorder, unstable & low self-esteem, and depression.
Think and Reflect:
Anjali and Tina were best-friends, but they had different self-images as shown in the image.

Ways to Improve Self-Image

If you have concluded that you are related to Anjali then you might have a negative self-image, but don’t worry. Here are some ways in which you can work upon developing a more positive self-image –

1. List 10 Things You Love About YourselfThis is a basic exercise, yet one that can be incredible.

You should simply list 10 things you love about yourself! Truly, this can be more difficult than it appears, however, actively searching out the positives in yourself will make it a lot simpler to see yourself in a positive light. 

On the off chance that you arrive at 10 things and have more to list, keep writing them down! It won't damage to have additional things to adore about yourself!

2. List 5 Achievements Which You Are Proud Of 

Another list-making exercise that can be helpful is writing down 5 things that you are proud of yourself for doing or achieving. These accomplishments can be huge, such as never lying, winning a prestigious competition, supporting a cause, being punctual, and so on or as small as acing a test, feeding stray animals, and so on for an extra self-image boost, try writing detailed accounts of your achievements.

The achievement does not matter. What matters is to remind yourself of your capabilities and motivating yourself to meet the challenge at hand, the next time you face an obstacle.

3. Maintain a Gratitude Journal or a Gratitude Jar

Using prompts like “One good thing that happened to me today…”, “Something I accomplished today…” or “Someone I was thankful for today…” helps you build a positive worldview and be more grateful for the things around you, which in turn, will boost your self-image. You can either write them in a journal or you can make chits and put them in a jar, and read them when you feel unworthy, or bad about yourself. 

Loving yourself can be difficult, but taking small steps to improve different facets of yourself will go a long way, in making you a happier, more confident, and successful person! 

यत् भावो - तत् भवति - You become what you believe

Reflect to Act

What are your strengths and weaknesses? What do you do to boost your self-image and value yourself?

At Abhyast, we believe in helping you in your journey of self-discovery. You can share your experiences, feedback and suggestions with Abhyast. We are eagerly awaiting your response. Do write to us at support@Abhyast.in 





About the Author

Akshita Shreya is a psychology graduate from the University of Delhi. She believes in constantly learning beyond books and classroom walls. Her life mantra is to live life without having any regrets and to always be open to experiences.