Guest post by John Ngatia – The Self Image
Through many years of coaching, if there is one aspect that determines what happens in our lives, i.e. the difference between success and failure, health and sickness, love and hate, confidence or not, etc. it is the concept of “self-image”, and it gives me much pleasure to share with you what it is and how it impacts your life.
Firstly I think it is appropriate to commence by defining self-image. Simply put, it is who you belief yourself to be. It is the concept you hold of yourself. According to Dr Maxwell Maltz, the author of the classic, “Psycho-Cybernetics”, “whether we realise it or not, each of us carries about with us a mental blueprint or picture of ourselves. It maybe vague and ill-defined to our conscious gaze. In fact it may not be recognizable at all. But it is there, complete down to the last detail.” Maltz further states “The self-image is a “premise” a base or a foundation upon which your entire personality, your behaviour and even your circumstances are built”. In essence your life is virtually a reflection of the image you hold of yourself.
The concept of yourself or your self-image, is all that you accept and consent as true about you. It is the “sort of person I am” or to put it more correctly, the “I person I belief myself to be”. A great question to ponder is, “What are beliefs and where do they come?” My definition of a belief, “A belief is a thought I keep thinking over and over until I believe it is true”. Beliefs can also be “inherited” meaning the environment that we grow up in, the influence that our parents and roles models have on us, can be a source of beliefs. Our experiences, especially of significant emotional experiences can also lead us to adopting certain beliefs. You will agree with me that none of us was born with any “beliefs about ourselves. ” rather they originate from past experiences, our success or failures, our humiliations or triumphs, the way other people have reacted to us, the culture we grew up in, our role models, our religious or non-religious upbringing etc.
I have often thought, if my young daughter Makena, when she was born many years ago, was to go to China and live there, she would adopt the culture and way of the Chinese people and would not know any different.
Immanuel Kant wrote, “We see things not as they are, but as we are”. Thus yourself image is the lens through which you see the world. If you cannot see yourself being successful at something, you will most likely talk yourself out of giving it a go. You will come up will all reasons why you can’t. Am certain you have witnessed people who keep sabotaging themselves and you wonder why….now you know. Conversely if you see yourself as having some talent, you most likely will find within yourself inner strength and external help to assist you cultivate and grow that talent.
We do not see a world that is objective to us rather we see our beliefs. You will see your hopes and your fears. A cynic and an optimist both believe they see the “truth”, but really they just see what they most identify with. Thus a cynic sees an opportunity as a prelude to more disappointment, a hassle, whereas an optimist sees an opportunity as a chance to grow and experience adventure. Henry Ford put it this way, “whether you think you can or you cannot, either way you are right”….truly we are self-fulfilling prophecies. Hence for things to change it is paramount to change the beliefs, and when we change the beliefs we change the concept of who we are. Ralph Waldo Trine said, “The optimist is right. The pessimist is right. The one differs from the other as the light from dark. Yet both are right. Each is right from his own particular point of view, and this point of view is the determining factor in the life of each. It determines as to whether it is a life of power or of impotence, of peace or pain, of success or failure.”
The truth is my friends, if the concept of yourself was different, everything in your world would be different. Your concept being what it is, everything in your world must be as it is. The beauty of understanding this truth is that, if there are aspects of your life you don’t like, then you can change. There is power in that. The world moves with motiveless necessity, meaning that it has no motive of its own but is under the necessity of manifesting your concept, the arrangement of your mind, and your mind is always arranged in accordance with the image of all you believe and consent as true. The rich man, poor man, beggar man or thief are not different minds, but different arrangements of the same mind. In the same sense that a piece of steel when magnetized differs not in substance from its demagnetized state but in the arrangement and order of its molecules.
In a sense, what I am alluding to is that magnetism is not generated its displayed. Health, wealth, beauty and genius are not created, they are only manifested by arrangement of your mind, that is the concept of yourself. And as I said before, the concept of yourself is all that you accept and consent to as true. Man’s chief delusion is the conviction that there are causes other than his own state of consciousness. However all that befalls a man- all that is done by him or her, all that comes from him or her, happens as a result of a state of consciousness. And consciousness is all that man thinks and desires and loves, all that he believes is true and consents to. That is why a change of consciousness is necessary before you can change your outer world. The good book puts it very succinctly, “Be ye transformed by the renewal of the mind”. You must have a new idea, an new concept of yourself…this is renewal of the mind. The changes which take place in your life as a results of changing the concept or self-image are profound, and to the unenlightened appear not as a result of change in consciousness but as outer cause or coincidence. However the only fate governing your life is the fate determined by your own concepts, your own assumptions, for an assumption though false, if persisted upon will harden into a fact.
I have witnessed this time and time again since I begun coaching fifteen years ago. Everything depends on your attitude towards yourself. That which you will not affirm as true of yourself can never be realised by you, for attitude alone is the necessary condition by which you realise your goal. To reach a higher level of being, we must assume a higher concept of ourselves. If you will not imagine yourself as other than what you are, then you will remain as you are. You must belief before you can see it…..you will not see it, if you do not belief first. Take time to look deeply into your life….who do you belief yourself to be? What are some areas or categories of your life that you are not satisfied with?….Is it your health, wealth, relationships, place of work or business?
To give you a quick guide look into your beliefs about the following
• Am I smart or not; I am confident or not.
• I am capable in certain areas i.e. mathematics or science, business etc.
• Your clumsiness
• Your coordination
• Your athletic abilities
• Your musical and artistic talents
• Your beliefs in relationship to health, your immunity to or inclination towards illness.
• Beliefs that I am prone to being overweight, catching colds, predisposed to low energy etc.
• Your beliefs about your personality traits i.e. I am shy, or loud, or pushy, or fearful or I have a fear of public speaking.
• Your beliefs about wealth and money.
• Your beliefs about who you are. Every “I AM” is a belief that determines the concept of yourself.
Once you have identified what isn’t working for you, then adopt a new you. Awareness is always the beginning of change. No one was born with a self-image……so you can create a new concept of yourself right now. One that is of your own creation. If you picture yourself vividly as defeated, that alone will make victory impossible. However, if you picture yourself vividly as winning, that alone will contribute immeasurably to success. Great living starts with a picture, held in your imagination, of what you would like to be, do or have. The results you are presently experiencing in your life are a physical manifestation of the images in your subconscious mind which is directing your life. To create the new self-image, go someplace quiet where you will not be interrupted. Being in Nature is most ideal. Ensure that you are relaxed and make yourself as comfortable as is possible.
Redefine your self- image / self-concept by challenging everything that you have held to be true about yourself until now. You may close your eyes and exercise your imagination. Then take time to write a paragraph below of your new self-image.
• Make sure that the statement is in present tense and includes no negatives.
• Put in as much detail as is possible, commit to reading it and most importantly get emotionally involved.
• Feel the feelings as if you have already become that which you desire to be.
They say that knowledge is power. I disagree in the sense that knowledge is power if it is put to use and as a result changes or alters some aspect of your life for the better. Put to the test the principles discussed here and witness the changes yourself. Words do not teach it is the experience that does.
Let me conclude with words of wisdom from one of my teachers, Neville, “If you refuse to assume the responsibility of the incarnation of a new and higher concept of yourself, then you reject the means, the only means, whereby redemption- that is, the attainment of your ideal- can be affected.”
May you all experience a wonderful day.
John is a Speaker, Peak Performance and Turnaround Coach, an accredited NLP Master Practitioner and a Hydration Specialist. As a speaker/trainer he has an endearing and charismatic style that captures his audience’s attention and hearts.
John’s mission is to inspire millions of people worldwide to live a life of joy, great health and financial abundance.
He is a business and personal development consultant, a peak performance and turn around coach, a dynamic and compelling speaker whose passion is to inspire, motivate and help people to personally enhance and enrich the quality of their life, physically, mentally and financially.
As a Hydration Specialist he has helped hundreds of people worldwide as follows
• Reverse degenerative diseases such as arthritis, diabetes, eczema, psoriasis, high blood pressure, acid reflux, gout, fibromyalgia, food intolerances, allergies, asthma, back pains, some types of cancer, crohn’s disease, glaucoma, to mention but a few.
• Slow the ageing process, more energy and enhanced wellbeing.
• In Sports: Improved sports performance, heightened focus, higher levels of endurance, quick recovery from sporting activities and injuries.
A qualified accountant of over 15 years, John has had extensive experience and understanding of business and managing large corporations, having worked in both small businesses and large multinational organisations. This experience can assist you in understanding strategies to apply in your own business and at work.
He has successfully coached and mentored high profile business owners, executives, doctors, surgeons and sports personalities. Some past clients include Kimberly Clarke International, Australia Post, Crown Equipment, Motorola , Star Pharmacy Group, BAE Systems to name but a few.