First and foremost, self-concept is our command centre, our belief about ourselves and the responses we will get from others.  In other words, it is what we believe to be true about ourselves.

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We do not just have one self-concept, we have lots of them, for example the way we dress, the way we speak, the way we act, the type of parent/friend/partner you are and even the type of lover you are.  The Self-concept(s) you have even determines your income!

Generally, we become irritated, angry and retaliate when someone suggests that we are not the person that we think that we really are.  They have challenged our concept!


Can you alter your self-concept?

A client of mine, who plays golf regularly, was telling me that every time they played golf, they did exceptionally well on the first nine holes.  In addition to this they wondered what on earth was the matter with them because the following nine holes were terrible!

They felt they were just no good.

Undoubtedly down to mindset and believing that the second lot of nine holes was going to be bad, they always were, and they ended up with a score that they were familiar with and expected.

Once they altered their self-concept their golf handicap improved, and it started with why they believed they were no good.


Self-ideal, Self-Image and Self-Esteem.


These are the three major parts which make up self-concept.


Self-ideal is the person you would like to be.


Self-Image is how you see yourself and importantly how you think about yourself.  It is like an inner mirror looking at how you perceive yourself now and may be based on how you think others see you.


Self-esteem is how we value and perceive ourselves. It’s based on our opinions and beliefs about ourselves, which can sometimes feel difficult to change. Your self-esteem can affect whether you: like and value yourself as a person.


Let me tell you, success begins when you reject other people’s images of you!

In 1970 whilst at school I remember being told the following story in assembly.

Once upon a time there was a young boy who lived with his grandmother.  He was only a few years old, but he had no self confidence as though his self-image had destroyed him.

There were a lot of people who sensed his lack of confidence, in particular the school bully, who one day, beat him up severely.  This continued for months, and the boy put up with until one day he turned on the bully and knocked him to the ground.  Within minutes the boy had a newfound self-image of himself!

He became head of his class that year, and the boy of the school.

Years later in 1705 the boy was Knighted to become Sir Isaac Newton.  A man who discovered one of the most important Universal Laws.  You’ve probably heard of the story yourself about the apple falling from the tree because of Gravity, known as Newtons Law of Universal Gravitation.

One could argue that had this boy not been subject to bullying, had he not had that moment of self-image change where he fought back, would he have gone on to achieve these things?

From the story we see the change in self-belief, self-confidence and self-image making him unstoppable and a huge success.


Self-concept is powerful so remember to be kind to yourself and ensure that you work on your self-concept too.

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Who Is Karen Baughan?

Karen Baughan is an NLP Master Practitioner based in Bromsgrove, UK. Having used NLP to affect her own personal transformation, she now helps clients, from around the world, to transform their lives and achieve their dreams.