More Thanh Words

"My name is Thanh and I'm a Blogger". Now that I have admitted to that, I can say that I'm a stereotypical "geeky" Engineer who enjoys sci-fi books and movies and into all things technological. I also love music and have a passion for FOOD. I'm a social person and like to talk to people. I hate people who are fake or overly aggressive. If you're also into some serious discussion, with a pinch of sarcasm and a dash of real emotion, then please read on.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Self Perception

Recently, I've read a few blog where people have posted photos of themselves and looked at their imperfections. This has prompted me to do the same. I have posted photos of myself in lots of other posts on this blog, so I'm not too self conscious about how I look. However, taking a close up photo of yourself and analysing it carefully does make you see yourself in another light.

When we look in the mirror, that is a reflected image. I don't know if it's that or something else, but I always seem to think I look better in the mirror image. I always think that I look pretty bad in photos and it doesn't look like me. Generally my hair looks terrible, my skin looks even worse than what I think it looks and everything just looks bad. Sometimes I might see a photo that I like, but that may be 1 in 20 photos.

This brings me to the issue of our own self perfection, not just our looks, but all aspects of our lives. We generally tend to think that we are better than what we are. Thats just human ego at work. I think you can clearly see this from contestants on singing competition. Some people sound terrible, but are so deluded that they think they are actually good. This is a two part problem. With sound, we are hearing some of the sound direct from our ear canals when we sing, and that sounds entirely different from the sound that is projected outside that everyone hears. If you have ever taped yourself and listened back, I'm sure you'll be shocked at what you hear. Slowly you adjust to it, but since you hear your own voice each day mostly when you talk, you never really get used to what you really sound like on tape. In regards to those contestants, I'm sure some of them have taped themselves. Even if they are awful, they only want to hear what they perceive rather than reality.

It's good to believe in yourself and have a good positive perception on yourself, but when you totally overestimate yourself, then you're only setting yourself up for a fall. I think you need to take into account a bit of what others think of you, as they see you in a different light, a more unbiased light.

Back to my photos, if I were a slightly delusional person with an overly high regard for myself, I might think that I looked like this, with great skin, a smaller nose and nice shiny white teeth (ah the power of Photoshop).

But I think I'm quite a grounded person and know that in reality I look like this, with quite a bad outbreak of pimples recently, bad yellow teeth from my immunisation injection as baby in Vietnam (I forget what the injection that causes this yellow teeth, must ask Pharmacist friend again next time) and a large nose that I inherited from my dad. But that's all ok with me, I accept who I am and my self perception is one based on reality more than fantasy.


Blogger Princess Chloe said...

I think that I am the opposite - that I am actually less attractive than I am. When I look at myself in the mirror I tend to see only my imperfections and overlook the things that are actually ok about me. Maybe it is a gender thing, who knows.

8/30/2006 1:42 AM  
Blogger wei.z|Lisa said...

To have a great essay you must include pro's and cons, to see the reality of yourself you must also look at both sides. The truth may be what you think is imperfect, etc. But other people might see other imperfections that you missed.

I just had a lecture about gender identity on the web, and the lecturer happen to show us those cosmo mags that have photoshopped models and they show you the 'imperfection' and on the side a list of changes they made to the girl. Put aside the obvious ones like hair, cheek, breasts, hips...they did her bone (chin) structure and facial creases as well! Like how do you think she felt having change most of her physicalities, when you're making a living from it?

Sorry, I lost my point.
Your post was infallible :)

8/30/2006 2:52 PM  
Blogger thanh7580 said...

Chloe, I think it might be a gender thing, women seem to be more insecure about their looks and perceive themselves as less attractive. I don't think I've ever seen a photo of yourself on your blog so maybe you are one of those insecure ones?

Lisa, are you saying I'm even more imperfect, I don't understand the first few sentences you wrote?

I guess the models would feel even more insecure, like they're not pretty enough. Society is so driven by image, and a pretty face on a magazine will sell more than an ugly face for sure.

8/30/2006 4:16 PM  
Blogger afrobev said...

Well written Thanh. I must admit that I prefer my mirror image to any photo's of myself. Chloe has said herself about a positive body image that some people exude whilst others get all insecure.

I dont think it's all about looks. I think personality shines through and after a while becomes more attractive to the opposite sex. Looks are skin deep and very good looking people tend to be shallow in my experience because of their over reliance on good looks.

Im lucky that I am one of the ones that has both, hee hee. Self mocking is king!

8/30/2006 7:52 PM  
Blogger Girl Kae said...

That was a very honest post :)

8/30/2006 9:39 PM  
Blogger thanh7580 said...

You're so funny James. And good looking too, did I forget to mention that. Self mocking is definitely King, you gotta laugh at yourself sometimes or life just gets too serious.

8/31/2006 6:14 PM  
Blogger wei.z|Lisa said... i said i got lost in my point. forget i said all that. i try to hard to sound smart >.<

8/31/2006 10:29 PM  
Blogger wei.z|Lisa said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8/31/2006 10:29 PM  
Blogger danielsan said...

I prefer mirror image too myself! I hate having my photos taken!

I agree with James, looks aint everything, more of a personality man myself, and I my mates says the same about me too! Well I hope so!

9/01/2006 5:04 AM  
Blogger thanh7580 said...

Lisa, I'm sure you're a smart girl, I've read your blog. You're just being self deprecating like James.

Stan, isn't it strange how everyone prefers their mirror image and hates photos. Is it the 2D aspect of photos that makes us look very different and hence we dislike it?

9/01/2006 5:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't get it.

Both photos show the same thing.

A fat greedy stinky Do.

1/29/2008 9:33 PM  
Blogger thanh7580 said...

Anonymous, I may be slightly fat, but greedy and stinky I am not.

1/30/2008 6:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Comment deleted
This post has been removed by the blog administrator.

8/31/2006 10:29 PM

DO tell, what was written before you deleted. Is this the work of Mao Zhi Do?

4/11/2008 4:52 PM  

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