Subject: Communications

Terms:
1. self-concept: describes who you think you are, reflects the way we believe others see us.
2. self- esteem involves evaluations of self-worth.
3. Positive Cycle: High self esteem, positive self comments (i.e – I CAN do this!), accomplish desirable behavior, positive self thought (I DID IT).
4. social comparison: evaluating ourselves in terms of how we compare with others.

Example of text: \”
To illustrate this point further, lets start at the beginning. Children arent born with any sense of identity. They learn to judge themselves only through the way others treat them. As children learn to speak and understand language, verbal messages contribute to a developing self-concept. Every day a child is bombarded with scores of appraisals about himself or herself. Some of these are positive: Youre so cute! I love you. What a big girl. Other messages are negative: Whats the matter with you? Cant you do anything right?\”

Two types of social comparison need highlighting. In the first type, we decide whether we are superior or inferior by comparing ourselves to others. Are we attractive or ugly? A success or failure? Intelligent or stupid? It depends on those against whom we measure ourselves. For instance, research shows that young women who regularly compare themselves with ultra-thin media models develop negative appraisals of their own bodies. In one study, young womens perceptions of their bodies changed for the worse after watching just thirty minutes of televised images of the ideal female form. Men, too, who compare themselves to media-idealized male physiques evaluate their bodies negatively. People also use others online profiles as points of comparison, and they may feel less attractive after doing so. Youll probably never be as beautiful as a Hollywood star, as agile as a professional athlete, or as wealthy as a millionaire. When you consider the matter logically, these facts dont mean youre worthless. Nonetheless, many people judge themselves against unreasonable standards and suffer accordingly. This is particularly true of people with perfectionistic tendencies, whose self-concepts have been shaped by demanding messages from significant others. These distorted self-images can lead to serious behavioral disorders, such as depression, anorexia nervosa, and bulimia.

Textbook: Looking Out, Looking In – Fifteenth edition by Ronald B Adler and Russell F Proctor II