I’ve got great ideas, I’ve got my goals set, it should have been smooth sailing, but why are others always doing better than me? After so long, why am I not making much progress?
Does this sound familiar?
What do you think of yourself?
We all have an inner self-image. Our self-image determines what type of person we are, or we think we are.
This self-image is based on things like our past experiences, failures, successes, humiliations or other people’s reaction to us. Our self-image determines what we can or cannot accomplish and our attitude towards our life and abilities.
Whatever image you hold of yourself turns out to be your reality and what other people see of you.
For example, a while back I was chatting to guy about training and he started talking about the size of his chest. He said, “I may have a skinny upper body but at least I have great lower body mass.”
I asked him why he doesn’t focus on training his chest and build up more mass in his upper body. He replied “I have tried now and then, but it just won’t grow. It’s my genetics.”
Guess what? His chest are still underdeveloped till this day. This dude has the self-image that his chest will never grow because of his genetics and he has accepted his pecks to be small forever.
This has caused him to give up trying to gain a balanced physique and gain some mass in the chest area despite working out 4 days a week. Now I know this sounds batshit crazy to most of us (I hope), but you’d be surprised what type of self-images people hold.
- I’m not good at making sales, I’ve just never been confident.
- I’ve never been able to make good conversation, I’ve always been shy.
- I’m always late. It’s just the way I am.
- I’ve always been fat, obesity is in my family.
- I’m shit at presentations. I always have been, and I always will be.
- I’ll never have extra cash, my families always been unfortunate.
- I’ve always been skinny, I can’t put on weight.
These are just a few examples of the self-image that some of us hold. And these so called ‘truths’ about ourselves have been built throughout our past experiences. And guess what happens when you hold these inner self images? They become true and a part of your identity.
Why Should You Work on Holding a High Self-Image?
On the other hand, you get people who hold high self-images. Take a look at combat sports like MMA (mixed martial arts) and boxing. The people who hold a high inner self-image nearly always get things done.
People like Floyd Mayweather, Conor McGregor, and Anderson Silver are just some of the guy’s who hold high inner self-images and it shows through their work.
“Whether you think you can or think you can’t you are right.”
Holding a high self-image makes you progress in life and towards your goals. Even if you’re not good at what you want to achieve, you will take the steps to learn and get better at it because you have a confident ‘I can’ self-image and not a scared ‘I can’t’ self-image.
Holding a High Self-Image Will;
- Make you develop mentally (maybe to the extent of Charles Xavier from X-men, who knows?)
- Have more discipline.
- Be more confident.
- Have more self-respect.
- And ultimately have more success in all areas of your life.
Why a Low Self-Image Could be Beating You up Everyday
Some people may try to convey a strong self-image when deep down they really hold a low inner self-image. This can cause you all kinds of problems, from your training goals to your business.
A low self-image can generate fear that holds you back. This can lead to you not trying to eat healthy to lose unwanted fat or go to the gym to build the body you want. It can lead to you not going into that big corporate building to make that sale or ask that person for advice about how to start your new business idea. It can make you feel inadequate and unable. In turn, it will hold you back in life and lead to you not taking any action.
When you have the ‘I can’t’ attitude, you sit on your ass in fear and watch the parade go by.
Didn’t you know that can’t never could do anything?
Yeah, yeah, Okay… I know some of the combat athletes I mentioned previously walk around arrogantly thinking they’re the shit. And some people may not like it, but that’s what works for them.
It works for them because psychological warfare and emotional dominance is a huge advantage in the world of combat sports. Finding a balance of what works best for YOUR own needs is the key.
5 Steps to Fix a beat up Inner Self-Image
1) Become aware of what your undesirable self-image traits are. Maybe it’s, ‘I’m not confident’, ‘I’m not good at presentations’ or ‘I’m bad at money management.’
Sounds pretty simple, but you’d be surprised how many people go through life without thinking about this and build a shitty self-image unknowingly.
2) Understand that the self-image you have right now is not your identity but rather a product of experiences from the past.
3) Understand that it can change with practice and awareness of what you think of yourself.
4) Start to think the opposite of yourself when a negative thought comes to mind.
For example, don’t hold the thought ‘I’m not confident at making sales,’ instead think, ‘I am confident and my sales ability is improving every day.’ You’ll be amazed how quick your attitude, ability, and confidence can change by holding a higher self-image!
5) Most of the time our self-image bullshits us. It’s not a true representation of our abilities or actions, so we can change it by simply thinking correctly. However, if you have a self-image of something that you know you cannot do because you do not possess the level of skill, then you can learn. Learn from the people who have the self-image traits you want and read books.
Books Are Your Best Friend (and your dog too, if you have one!)
There are countless great books, articles or websites for you to learn from and acquire new skills. Whether it’s to build confidence, be better at sales, learn how to be an entrepreneur or how to workout and build your dream body.
Learning needed skills and practicing them in your daily life is a sure way to change your old self-image and build a new self-image. This new self-image will then be accepted by your mind with ease and catapult you towards your goals. This works for all goals in life that you have set whether its a fitness, social, relationship or a physical orientated.
Feeling socially awkward? Read the classic, ‘How to Make Friends and Influence People’ by Dale Carnegie.
Feel that you could never build a business? Read ‘The $100 Start Up’ by Chris Guillebeau.
Think that you’re too fat or too skinny and you’re stuck with it? Read the Modest Dragon blog by Kamal Gill 😉
The list can go on forever. Reading gives you the chance to take a glimpse into the minds of people that have been there, done it, and got the t-shirt.
By understanding what you think of yourself, changing your thoughts, then if need be taking the necessary action to acquire a new skill, you will build a self-image from the ground up as strong as the Roman Empire in its prime!
Do you have anything to add? Whats your thoughts? Let me know in the comments below!