Self-Concept (Encyclopedia of Psychology)
The way in which one perceives oneself.
Self-concepthe way in which one perceives oneselfan be divided into categories, such as personal self-concept (facts or one's own opinions about oneself, such as "I have brown eyes" or "I am attractive"); social self-concept (one's perceptions about how one is regarded by others: "people think I have a great sense of humor"); and self-ideals (what or how one would like to be: "I want to be a lawyer" or "I wish I were thinner").
While a number of philosophers and psychologists have addressed the idea that behavior is influenced by the way people see themselves, investigation into the importance of self-concept is most closely associated with the writings and therapeutic practices of Carl Rogers. The selfnd one's awareness of itie at the heart of Rogers'client-centered therapy and the philosophy behind it. According to Rogers, one's self-concept influences how one regards both oneself and one's environment. The self-concept of a mentally healthy person is consistent with his or her thoughts, experiences, and behavior. However, people may maintain a self-concept that is at odds with their true feelings to win the approval of others and "fit in," either socially or professionally. This involves repressing their true feelings and impulses, which eventually causes them to become...
(The entire section is 533 words.)
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