Your appearance | INFJ Forum

Your appearance

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by Soulful, Jan 3, 2010.

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  1. Soulful

    Soulful life is good

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    For most people, our appearance is intricately woven into our identity and self-concept. For some people, it becomes central to who they are; while for others, it is not something of great importance. I find this really interesting. I know these can be very personal questions, so I actually hesitated in creating this thread, but I'll open it up for discussion and perhaps it might it be interesting to discuss and maybe beneficial too.

    Do you define yourself according to your physical appearance?

    How much of your appearance decides your self-concept*, who YOU are, how you feel about yourself, how you assess your worth?

    *Self-concept: how you view yourself. The ideas, feelings and attitudes that a person has about his own identity, worth, capabilities and limitations.

    Does how you feel about your appearance (or feel about yourself as a result of your appearance) affect how you live your life?

    How does your appearance factor into your personal relationships? How much does it affect your confidence level with a potential or existing partner?

    How does your appearance factor into how comfortable you are in the outside world? With meeting people and presenting yourself? How does it affect you in formal situations such as work, interviews, etc.? Does it affect your confidence socially?
     
    #1 Soulful, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
    Gaze and slant like this.
  2. bamf

    bamf Is Watching You
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    Maybe I'm a bit odd in saying this, but I hardly notice my appearance. I could be gone all day before noticing my hair is a mess, that I haven't shaved in weeks, and that my shirt has ketchup on it. That's not to say that I'm messy or sloppy, but I hardly pay attention to my physical appearance, and I rarely judge myself on it (probably because I never really notice it).

    If I'm going to a special occasion, I take the time to make sure I dress the part, but my physical appearance doesn't usually worry me. I had horrible acne in high school, but I almost never thought twice about it. People almost never remarked on it, and I think it was because I didn't let it be a weakness.

    I think it's when we sense our own appearance as a weakness in ourselves, that other people sense it too, and pounce on it. If you're comfortable in your "ugliness" other people will be too. (And I'm also secretly narcissistic about my appearance. I think I look good no matter what, but that comes from constant self-reinforcement as a child)

    In fact, I pay so little attention to my appearance, that sometimes I get freaked out when I look in a mirror. When I see my physical body, I feel a great detachment too it. I know that it's "me" in the mirror, but at the same time I feel as if it's just some stranger. Then I get all introspective and start questioning "what I really am". That gets annoying, so I usually avoid peering into mirrors for any period of time.
     
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  3. Roger

    Roger ...

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    To be honest,
    I will tell you true. I am not that attractive person. But yes, i have good personality, good mentality, good style of making conversation with anyone. I try to be honest people. I think, this is why i am able to get success to make other family my friend. In past, i tend to become sad when i find myself not attractive. Later, i managed it and removed that bad feeling thoughts. Now i am very happy. I think, i have to accept those all things, after all god has gifted other things. :)

    I never define myself according to my physical appearance. I am what i am OK.

    I am human and i can achieve anything i want. I feel great about myself.

    No, i made my personal relationship on the base of confidence, loyalty, honesty, love respect to the relationship, Attitude to live with it and many other things that count in relationship.

    You can judge me now, i wrote everything about me. I am very comfortable with outside world. Have no problem to communicate with anyone. I know, i don't need to think what others are thinking, just i have to concerned with me. SO i am very good at work and social gathering stuff.
     
  4. Crow

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    "One's appearance means less to one over time."
    Which is true for some, some of the time.
    "Younger people attach greater importance to it that older people."
    That's true for some.
    "Appearance is the first thing people see about you."
    Usually true.
    "That fat, ugly woman is probably a really nice person."
    Sometimes it may be true.
    "He only dresses to keep warm."
    Also true of some.

    You see what you want to see.
    I used to wear a turban, sometimes, Moroccan Berber-style.
    I always felt calm and wise when I did.
    Women loved it.
    9/11 changed everything.

    Now I look any way I look when I look it.
    But I do feel better after a bath, a beard-trim, and a haircut.
     
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  5. Trifoilum

    Trifoilum find wisdom, build hope.

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    Not really, but I do realize that my physical appearance gives a quick -- probably the quickest, but most likely the first-- impression over who I am perceived as. So it should be the opposite; I define my physical appearance according to who I am.

    A lot. If I'm unhappy, uncomfortable, It's shown. And my appearance won't look good. But the opposite won't always work; sometimes I dressed up nicely to cover my inside messes.
    But that's feelings; emotions. Belief and style, on the other hand, doesn't really touches each other in my dictionary. Maybe it's due to the influence of my ENTJ friend who mastered the art of staying and looking subtly yet influential; but yeah, I may believe in A, B, C, X, hated Z, have utter disdain for H, but I don't have to give appearance of it; that's another layer I built for...protection.
    And in a way, choosing a style AND the subsequent belief is a form of conformity. I don't really like those :p

    Quite affected; especially in social. I tried to look my best but sometimes looking from the other side I always feel like I'm not...dressed good enough; or dressed too good. My friends actually teased me for dressing too well (IMO) and to them it comes off as gaudy, and I do feel hurt. But ah well; I think I look good.

    A lot. Not that I want to cover myself with makeup, or change myself into some pretty doll I'm not, but well, despite wanting my partner to accept who I am, I also want to look especially the best when I'm with my partner just because. And I cannot say anything with its effects on my confidence :|

    Even though I still can't apply it, I understand that our looks at times shows who we are to others. So yes, I try to present myself as good as possible.
     
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  6. Flavus Aquila

    Flavus Aquila Finding My Place in the Sun
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    I am often taken aback by my own appearance: I have a severe looking face, with deep set eyes.

    I always expect to see a gentle looking face, with slightly sad eyes when I look in the mirror.

    So, I guess that my bearing or behaviour may not exactly fit with my appearance - indeed this was often commented upon by my classmates at school.
     
  7. Moxie

    Moxie Absent-Minded Professor

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    I am with you. I am constantly surprised by the person in the mirror, or pictures. That's me? You'd think I'd have gotten used to it by now.

    I can't really answer the questions in the OP. I often feel like my body is separate from who I am. And yet, if I 'feel ugly' I tend to have a bad day - I think those negative thoughts express themselves negatively in my day. On the other hand if I feel 'stupid,' it does the exact same thing, so I'm sure it's not appearance related per se.

    I don't really know how I feel about my appearance. I've never been as skinny or as tall as I wanted to be, etc, but there comes a point that you just have to like the person you are--or at least not dislike her.

    I do hate that people are judged so much on physical appearance. A lot of times our genetics play a role in how we look - and yet it's common for people to make fun of people who don't fit the current beauty standard. I hate hearing people make fun of other people - esp because it's unlikely that they're perfect themselves.
     
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  8. Flavus Aquila

    Flavus Aquila Finding My Place in the Sun
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    I don't like people judging either - not because what they judge is innaccurate. But, I cannot stand the arrogance or bad manners it is done in.

    Offensive behaviour hurts.... a lot.
     
  9. soulseeker

    soulseeker Permanent Fixture

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    uhhh..... define myself according to my physical appearance.. i think I CAN'T and I DON'T want to define myself according to my physical appearance... I wouldn't want to be known as a person who is ugly or beautiful or fat or thin or whatever physical thing.. i would want to be known by my friends and family as a person who defines herself according to my morals, my beliefs, and personality :) :) :)

    well.... if was uglier, I wouldn't be less worthless than if i were pretty

    but of course... honestly, i wouldn't want to look really ugly.. i mean who does? ... of course i would also want to look presentable :) :) :)

    uhhhh in real world... not really... in ballet world... it does...



    uhh i don't want a partner right now.. so i don't care hahahahha :) :) and i wouldn't want a partner who would see me JUST PHYSICALLY.. I mean if he does not want to get to know me because of my physical appearance... then DON'T... it's not like i will force him....i wouldn't want a relationship based on physical appearance anyways...

    maybe i'm okay with the outside world... i don't really care if i'm not that pretty or really ugly or in between or whatever....
    but in ballet... i really feel fat... :) :) :) my face <-- i don't care whatever people think... my body <-- i also don't care but in ballet.. i super care... and so.... i do bikram yoga and i exercise a lot i dance a lot and everything... because i just feel sooo fat ... and if i feel fat... i don't know.. it lowers down my very low self esteem... <---all of those are JUST when i'm in ballet but outside ballet.. okay WHATEVER :) :) :)


    oh yeah.. and sometimes.. it does hurt when people treat me because of what i look like.... they judge me without knowing me just because of what i look like... even my friends would tell me that i look like a b***h or a slut or whatever ... and i look so cold and i look like an overconfident selfish b***h... it DOES NOT mean that if i want to wear a lot of bracelets or whatever accessories or if i join cheerdances.. i have that ugly cheerleader attitude or whatever... and it hurts.. because i seldom get the chance to show who i really am...

    and THAT'S why... only a few (very few) people know who i really am... because it seems like most of the people judge the physical appearance first without knowing the person
     
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    #9 soulseeker, Jan 3, 2010
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  10. BrokenSequencer

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    As others have said, I always seem surprised by the mirror. The person I feel like throughout the day, the way that I imagine others perceiving me (or wanting them to perceive me) is not the person I see staring back at me. If I don't see a mirror all day, I'm usually able to forget my appearance all together. I think my brain has an appearance of it's own and that is usually more what I concentrate on as I go through the day. How I am taking in the world versus how the world is taking me in.
     
  11. laurie

    laurie Snowblind in Dreamland

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    My appearance caused me a lot of grief when I was younger as I'm so freaking tall, especially for a girl. However, although it made me stand out, I don't think it's ever caused me to 'define' myself differently from who I think I am (mostly constructed by personality, beliefs etc.).
    I also get a bit of a surprise when I look in the mirror. I don't look much like I think I should to match my appearance ^^" I have too much of an 'intense' face.
    Overall though, I don't feel very connected to my appearance so it doesn't matter much to me (although I make sure I dress appropriately for the weather and have good hygiene levels).
     
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  12. Blackrazor6

    Blackrazor6 DirtyDeedsDoneDirtCheap

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    Responded in red.
    Good thread.
     
    #12 Blackrazor6, Jan 3, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  13. Questingpoet

    Questingpoet Not Afraid to Use His Beard
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    When I was younger, and struggling socially and in romantic matters I, blamed my appearence. Particularly the fact that I was a short, slightly built male. I hated it and let it define how I felt others was me. I eventually came to realize I was so very wrong. It was all about confidence, not how I looked. We all have strengths and weeknesses when it comes to attractiveness. Just like evey thing else, apperance is only one thing. What you exude from your personality and your spirit is actually more powerful, at least to the kind of persons I would be involved with.

    I find myself to be an attractive person physically now. No, I am not any taller (I have filled out thought!), I just see the half-full portion of the glass now. I don't use perceived weaknesses as a crutch. There are lots of things to like about my appearance, but I don't let, or want, them to define me.

    I will say that I like to be well groomed at all times and tend to dress in the fashions of someone younger than my age. That works out allright since I look a lot younger than I am. I don't do this for any particular reason other than I like new things (clothes included). I like to change facial hair up a lot too, but I wear much less than in years past. And I just like a variaty. I am not shocked by what I see in the mirror, and like what I see now. If that all sounds a bit Narsassitic, so be it.

    As far as my partner and how we relate here, we have some interesting interactions. I don't feel anymore or less attractive around her when we are out. I think we make a good looking couple physically. We have made some beautiful children. We disagree a lot on style of dress though. I stick to middle ground almost always. I call it "dress casual". I don't wear sweat pants or other sloppy clothes. Nice jeans or kakis and a collared or pressed shirt is my mode of operation. When we "go out", it is much the same. She on the other hand has no problem going out for errands "sloppy" in sweats or whatever. But to "go out", she want to get really decked out. We have had a lot of heated discussion on this over the years.

    Sorry if I digressed a little there. Overall, yes I am very aware of my apperance, but no it does not define me in my mind. I find it constantly amusing and interesting how people try to figure me out based on my appearance alone. And since I'm on the quiet side, they tend to base it on that and my looks--and they are ususally wrong! I love surprising people!! My looks are more like a thing I can play around with for amusement, but are not the real "me"!
     
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  14. tovlo

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    My suspicion is that we all do to some degree because others often relate to us based on appearance and at some level that external feedback contributes to the formation of our self-definition.

    I think though that the degree to which I consciously define myself according to physical appearance is rather low.

    For some reason I tend to have some level of association between the way I dress and my self-concept.

    I think that to some small degree how I'm dressed affects my mood.

    Once I set out on my day, I kind of lose track of my physical appearance, so I actually don't think my appearance consciously affects how I live my life much at all.

    Very little. I am fortunate in having a partner who describes finding my physical beauty as sourced in my spiritual. I have come to trust he will always see my beauty no matter my changing physical form.

    I have generally felt my physical presence was acceptable. Sometimes I've felt less attractive and sometimes more. Because I've seen my appearance as mostly middling, I tend not to see it as a strong influence on interactions either positively or negatively.
     
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  15. rainrise

    rainrise Community Member

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    i also relate to the mirror issue and i think the reason i'm uncomfortable about the image staring back at me is because i can be extremely judgemental when the focus is on myself and so my intention for looking in the mirror is often already one of criticism and disapproval before i even look at it.

    i've realized that i don't look at others the same way and am very accepting of how others look. perhaps this is because i deal with others through my Ni and Fe and relate to myself through Ni and Ti.

    when i am able to notice this in myself, i become friendly toward the image and am able to shift my perspective to treat the person in the mirror as if she were not me, but another person i would naturally relate to with understanding and interest. i learn to look at myself through the lens i look at other people; the harshness disappears from my eyes and my face relaxes and then do i realize that i am not at all flawed and that this is the person that people see.

    sometimes, we truly are our own worst enemy.
     
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    #15 rainrise, Jan 3, 2010
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  16. randomsomeone

    randomsomeone Well-known member

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    I am generally not well disposed to pretense, and I think my appearance probably reflects this. I do not dress for power at the office...more for equality, comfort, and collaboration. I am a specialist, but I want people to see me simply as a colleague. My work always comes out better in this mode.

    My hair/beard has been turning from brown to white for a long time...I would change nothing. I have earned all this white hair. :)
     
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  17. Questingpoet

    Questingpoet Not Afraid to Use His Beard
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    Agreed on the white hair. I still have very little except on my chin, but I would not change it. It' like battle scars!
     
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  18. Ria

    Ria Snow White over the ocean

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    This is a difficult post for me to write, but as I'm trying very hard right now to make positive inner shifts and changes, I'll take another risk and push the boundaries of my narrow comfort zone, here on the forum.

    I have (my entire life), struggled with a very rare OCD called BDD. As I'm on my Blackberry, its harder to post a link but its easy enough to google. At any rate, I find my best days are when I have extremely limited time infront of the mirror. 2 summers ago, I had 2 or 3 months of attacks where I was phoning in sick for work and getting out of bed was very challenging. Only a small handfull of people have been told until now.

    There is a 2 part youtube video called "mirror mirror" that orchistrates a day in the life of a BDD person. I am much healthier now (it could get bad anytime though), so I am always conciousely greatful for the times I am healthy. I would cut to relieve the pain, the scars on my arm are very faded now which pleases me.

    Things like showering, intimacy with my bf, getting ready for the day, going out anywhere, being around people etc, all trigger pain and fear and self rejection for my appearance but I find that ignoring it really helps. I have tried counseling but my counselor advised we stop because it was only traumatizing me and causing me to cut more aggresively. I take a herbal capsule called Gaba which targets the adreanal glands, I credit my ability to feel healthier to the Gaba. However, I still find myself to appear out of proportion, alien-like and as if I was really supposed to look like more how I feel about my insides; and that would be as lovely as I see my inner Self.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
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  19. Feelings

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    I'm kinda nasty looking and that's too bad. Most people don't seem to care unless I'm hitting on them. I don't like it, but then again I haven't cared enough to even wear the skin cream that the dermatologist I used to see gave me. If I really wanted, I could probably exercise a lot, and regulate my diet tightly. I know of a good dermatologist that does laser skin treatments, and can prescribe good skin creams. So if I REALLY cared to, I could look significantly better. Could also maintain a longer hair style, and wear make-up, but I really hate doing any manner of personal grooming and hygiene. I like being clean and I do it, but I don't like doing it.

    I would imagine most women spend like 2 hours a day primping and grooming? Skin care treatments, hair care and styling, make-up + removal, toenails, fingernails, body hair, tanning, exercise.
     
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  20. Gaze

    Gaze My word . . . hmm
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    Do you define yourself according to your physical appearance?
    - Well, i don't but society does, so, in reality, i have to distinguish myself as such through physical appearance.
    - Especially women - we are expected to demonstrate our feminity and show the world we are attractive or beautiful enough. We are only as worthy as the look or attractiveness vibes we send.
    - We are socialized from birth to think that we should define ourselves by how we dress to show the best side of ourselves. This should supposedly make us feel better.
    -Fact is, you're treated better if you're dressed better. Your opportunities increase if you dress "better" etc. You will get more attention and consideration if you dress better. That's the way of the world, so even if you are comfortable with who you are in a simple jeans and a T-shirt, people won't accept it. They will judge you as less because of it.
    - We're misjudged, misunderstood, and misread because of our appearances. Fact is, whatever i believe about myself and my appearance is insignificant, because in the end, society will win out.
    - Funny thing, if i dressed in a very simple, casual, not cute, manner, the assumption is often that you don't have the means to dress better, or you don't care enough about how you look to appear more acceptably and presentable to the world.
    - And confidence is apparently tied to appearance. So, the belief is that you will feel more confident if you dressed up. And tbh, i'm completely the opposite. But at the end of the day, however confident and relaxed i am within myself, people will still respond to me based on look and appearance, and see it as some reflection of something which is not there.
    - We teach people they are only good enough or worthy enough when they're dressed in a particular. So, that's what we do, because it affects our income, opportunities, etc.
     
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    #20 Gaze, Jan 3, 2010
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