This week, I had an opportunity to speak to a local group of teens on self image. I started off as I normally do talking about how I viewed myself as a teen. I walked through high school, into college, and into my married years. I focused on how others’ views of me shaped my own view of myself and how we have the power to shape others’ images of themselves. After I was done the adviser said to me “I never thought of it that way, I never thought about how we shape one another’s self image.” I think often we underestimate our power to shape one’s image of themselves. Whether you are in high school, college, or well into your adult years, we ALL impact and influence the way those around view themselves.
By your Words:
We tend to hide words in our hearts. Whether they are positive, negative, personal, intentional, or unintentional, the spoken words of others go right into our hearts. Often children and teens never forget the words used to describe them. The names they are called and ways they are dismissed or ignored forever shape the way they personally view themselves.
By your Actions:
We can easily forget that the way we treat others impacts the people around us. We are always being watched, whether it is on facebook, in person, at work, at school,or at home. Our platform of influence is much larger than we think. The way we react to a person’s appearance in front of our kids, or the reaction to someone making you frustrated or angry impacts the way those around will react in similar situations.
By your Attitude:
We have great power to impact each person who walks into our life daily. Our children, spouses, neighbors, tellers, waitresses and so on. Not only do we help define and shape their self-worth, we also teach those around us how to as well. My challenge to you today is to be aware of your actions, reactions, and attitude. The way you speak to others on facebook, face to face, over the phone and so on. Let them know that they are valuable no matter what level of service or relationship they are providing. One can make a small difference, but together with actions and reactions of love and mercy, our impact can be exponentially greater!