The Self Paper sample essay

Society wonders why people are the way they are. Sometimes our surroundings and situations in life make us who we are. The following defines the self, self-concept, emotion, self-esteem, behavior, and self-presentation.

According to, self is, “a combining form of self and variously used with the meanings “of the self” ( self-analysis ) and “by oneself or itself” ( self-appointed ); and with the meanings “to, with, toward, for, on, in oneself” ( self-complacent ), “inherent in oneself or itself” ( self-explanatory ), “independent” ( self-government ), and “automatic” ( self-operating ).

Self-concept is best defined as how you know and understand yourself (Valencia, 2010). Self-image and self-esteem are to important concepts in self-concept. Self-image is how an individual views themselves as well as how they believe others around views them. It is important to have a good self-image based on the good qualities that a person has. Some people do not give people an opportunity to obtain knowledge of the good qualities of a person and judge beforehand, this can hurt a person greatly. Some individuals have a great deal of self-image despite of what people around them think of them.

Self-esteem is how you feel about yourself (emotionally) (Valencia, 2010). Self-esteem has its pros and cons. Self-esteem can be a good when an employer is seeking to find a person for a management position. Self-esteem at times makes the individual stand out from the crowd. If the individual is confident about his or herself then the employer will see that as well. When a person has low self-esteem, a person runs the risk of hurting him or herself as well as others. Some people can also get into a serious depression stage that can only be cure only with medication and therapy.

Self-concept develops through interactions with others (Valencia, 2010). A person can interact with others in different ways. People interact with one another at work, school, church, community organizations, and even in family gatherings. An individual’s thoughts, beliefs, and actions are affected by how you think about you, your self-esteem, and confidence, and it determines your relationship with others (Valencia, 2010). The environment is an important role in how a person develops self-concept. The environment that a person is in reflects on how he or she are or will be in the near future.

The relationship between the self and emotion is like looking at a pair of shoes with shoe laces, one concept cannot work without the other one. One of the major theories in the social psychology of the self and emotion, self-discrepancy theory, concerns the impact of self-knowledge on how people feel and behave (Fiske, 2010). People tend to behave a certain way when they feel upset, angry, happy, sad, etc. If a person is upset then a person will usually keep quiet and have a serious face. When a person is happy they tend to have a smile on his or her face and speak about the reason he or she is happy. The theory addresses how people use self-knowledge to fit social standards and adapt to group life (Fiske, 2010).

There is several self-guide (standards) to regulate behaviors; the different self-guide lines include the actual self, ought self, and the ideal self (Fiske, 2010). The actual self is a person’s own image of how he or she sees him or her at that present moment. The ought self, is usually what other people think we should be. Individuals pay more attention to those closer to them such as parents, and family. The ought self, people tell them what they be or become.

The ideal self represents who a person wants to be or who somebody else want the person to be (Fiske, 2010). The ideal self comes from within a person. Like when a child is in grade school, the teacher asks the child what he or she would like to be when he or she grows up. Usually children will answer: a firefighter, police office, a nurse, a doctor, or a teacher. When a person does not become what they desired to be, he or she feels sadness, and not guilt.

Can the self and emotion affect an individual’s self-esteem? The self and emotion can affect an individual self-esteem in many ways. If a person is comfortable with the actual self in the present time then a person is more likely to have a stable self-esteem. If a person focused on the ought self, then a person’s self-esteem is not stable and is seeking to please others. Usually when people do not accomplish the “should,” they feel guilty. This makes them have problems with self-esteem, they believe that they cannot accomplish anything nor can they please anyone. The ideal self usually does not affect self-esteem. The individual may get sad for not becoming what he or she wanted to be in life (career), yet this does not stop them from believing in themselves and setting other goals in the future.

Self-concept defines one’s view of what is accurate, plausible, and ethical, which fits people’s motives of self-understanding and self-enhancement. Behavior is defined as the aggregate of responses to internal and external stimuli ( The behaving self focuses on how a person presents him or herself to others and why (Fiske, 2010). Peoples behavior depends on how much a person is eager to belong to an organization, community, or different groups. The self-descriptions represent self-presentation, the desired view of self as expressed in social behavior (Fiske, 2010).

How does this relationship (self and behavior) affect an individual’s self-presentation? Self-presentation adapts to context (goals, audience, situation and society) (Fiske, 2010). People set personal goals that they are seeking to improve or reach. A persons behavior can be the tool that can help an individual or cause the person to keep from his or her personal goal. If a person is set to make the directors list at school and has a behavior of not wanting to do his or her work, well the likely hood of making the directors list is low, but if he or she works hard and turn in assignments then they are likely to make the directors list.

Students have expectations, based on the audience, namely the professor, and what they think she wants (Fiske, 2010). According to Fiske, people select aspect of themselves likely to please the audience. For example, a person is more likely to answer a question using a higher level of vocabulary to please a professor. Immediate solution is one way that people change behaviors to fit in that particular environment at that specific moment. Society matters and affects the behavior of anyone. A person is more likely to interact with people in his or her society level. This cause’s a person’s self-presentation to be not as good as if interacting with those of the same society beliefs.

Just like everything a person has the power to use life situations to make them a better person or to destroy them. Self-esteem can take a person far or can destroy them completely. The environment around people makes individuals who they are without a doubt. It is how a person uses that which makes the successful in life or someone who makes up a number in statistics.