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SELF IMAGE,
SELF ESTEEM &
SEXUAL IDENTITY
The connections
© 2013 Anthony Venn-Brown
Our self-concept or self-image is
what we think and feel about
ourselves, including:
•Appearance
•Abilities
•Personality
•...
Our self-image is influenced by
four concepts:
Who I
think
I am
Who
others
think I am
Who I
really
am
Who I think
others t...
Harmony is wholeness
Who I
really
am
Who I
think
I am
Who I think
others think
I am
Perfect
Self
Image
Who
others
think I ...
The Self Image
Spectrum
P
O
O
R
P
E
R
F
E
C
T
• How is self image formed
• LGBT people and puberty
Evidences of a poor
self image
1. Inability to be open and build
genuine relationships
2. Excessive shyness
3. Attitudes o...
7. Self rejection of physical features,
abilities or traits
8. Critical/judgmental attitude
9. Negative attitude
10.Negati...
POOR SELF IMAGE
Shyness
Superiority
Self hatredNegative
Obsessive
Critical
Judgmental
Failure
Under achievement
Fragmented...
Coming from a Christian
background you have received
and adopted these messages.
•You are an abomination (KJV Leviticus)
•...
•You became this way because of
sexual abuse or poor parenting. You
are dysfunctional.
•You are unworthy of God’s love or ...
“Every day I feel the burdens of regret. I grieve for my
own years of anguish and also for the pain and
confusion I caused...
•Do you think that it is better when
gays and lesbians are more
“straight acting” because “men
should be men” and “women
s...
•Do you pretend that you are
straight?
•Do you only desire to have shared
sexual experiences with others of
the same sex a...
•Do you purposely refrain from
speaking with a gay or lesbian
person in a work setting or public
place, because others mig...
How a self-image works
It’s a cybernetic mechanism that
sets the boundaries for our
performance and behaviour
•Thermostat
...
B
B
A
F
How a self-image works
•The me I see is the me I’ll be. If I’ll
never see it, I’ll never be it.(R. Schuller)
•As a person thinketh in his heart s...
How to develop a healthy
self image
1. Accept yourself (I am gay)
2. Celebrate and appreciate your
uniqueness (Blessing no...
5. Develop a confidence in your value
as a person
6. Deal with the negative images from
the past
7. Be a person of integri...
9. Become conscious of inner self-talk
10. Speak positively about yourself, other
LGBT people and the community
11. Don’t ...
‘People who exist at the margins of society are
very much like Alice in Wonderland. They are not
required to make the toug...
What some outsiders discover in their adventures
on the other side of the looking glass is the
courage to repudiate self-c...
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our
deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is
our light,...
Anthony Venn-Brown
Coach – Speaker – Consultant
Ambassadors & Bridge Builders
International
info@gayambassador.com
www.gay...
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Self image, self esteem and sexual identity - Amplify Conference Hong Kong 2013

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• What is a self image?
• How is your self image formed?
• How does your self image affect your performance, behaviour and relationships?
• How a Christian belief system impacts gay and lesbian sense of self?
• Ten evidences of a poor self image
• How does your sexual identity influence your sense of self worth?
• Cognitive dissonance - what is it and how does it affect your self image?
• How fragmentation and compartmentalisation of self occurs
• Internalised homophobia and its impact on self esteem
• How to move along the self esteem spectrum
• Ten ways to create a healthy self image

Published in: Self Improvement
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Self image, self esteem and sexual identity - Amplify Conference Hong Kong 2013

  1. 1. SELF IMAGE, SELF ESTEEM & SEXUAL IDENTITY The connections © 2013 Anthony Venn-Brown
  2. 2. Our self-concept or self-image is what we think and feel about ourselves, including: •Appearance •Abilities •Personality •Parentage/culture •Environment •Sexual Orientation •World view (spirituality)
  3. 3. Our self-image is influenced by four concepts: Who I think I am Who others think I am Who I really am Who I think others think I am
  4. 4. Harmony is wholeness Who I really am Who I think I am Who I think others think I am Perfect Self Image Who others think I am
  5. 5. The Self Image Spectrum P O O R P E R F E C T
  6. 6. • How is self image formed • LGBT people and puberty
  7. 7. Evidences of a poor self image 1. Inability to be open and build genuine relationships 2. Excessive shyness 3. Attitudes of superiority 4. Obsessive behaviours, over achievement 5. Self-loathing/self-hatred 6. Fragmentation of self
  8. 8. 7. Self rejection of physical features, abilities or traits 8. Critical/judgmental attitude 9. Negative attitude 10.Negative self talk 11.Lack of goals and achievement 12.Lack of respect for self Evidences of a poor Self image
  9. 9. POOR SELF IMAGE Shyness Superiority Self hatredNegative Obsessive Critical Judgmental Failure Under achievement Fragmented self
  10. 10. Coming from a Christian background you have received and adopted these messages. •You are an abomination (KJV Leviticus) •You are a sexual pervert (I Corinthians 6:9) •You are consumed by lust (Romans 1) •You are unnatural/abnormal (Romans 1) •You won’t go to heaven unless you are straight (I Corinthians 6:9)
  11. 11. •You became this way because of sexual abuse or poor parenting. You are dysfunctional. •You are unworthy of God’s love or a place in His kingdom These messages cause: Cognitive dissonance Internalised homophobia
  12. 12. “Every day I feel the burdens of regret. I grieve for my own years of anguish and also for the pain and confusion I caused my wife, my family and my friends. And sure, I spent a lot of money in this process, but what I want back more than anything is the time and energy I put into it. Studying at school now, my peers are a decade younger than me, and hardly a day goes by that I don’t wonder; Where would I be now if not for my ex-gay detour? Where would I be professionally? How much more financially stable would I be? How much more confident? How much closer to self- actualisation? I realise such questions could poison my progress, but nonetheless they arise naturally, and I must wrestle with them” David, Ex-gay Survivor
  13. 13. •Do you think that it is better when gays and lesbians are more “straight acting” because “men should be men” and “women should be women?” •Do you cringe when a gay or lesbian character is shown on TV or in a movie? •Do you wish you were not gay or lesbian?
  14. 14. •Do you pretend that you are straight? •Do you only desire to have shared sexual experiences with others of the same sex and not shared companionship? •Are you afraid that others will reject you if they find out that you are gay or lesbian?
  15. 15. •Do you purposely refrain from speaking with a gay or lesbian person in a work setting or public place, because others might think that you are gay? •Do you have indiscriminate sex with others? If you answer yes to one or more of these then you have some level of internalised homophobia
  16. 16. How a self-image works It’s a cybernetic mechanism that sets the boundaries for our performance and behaviour •Thermostat •Automatic pilot
  17. 17. B B A F How a self-image works
  18. 18. •The me I see is the me I’ll be. If I’ll never see it, I’ll never be it.(R. Schuller) •As a person thinketh in his heart so is he (Proverbs 27:3) •Your world without is a reflection of your world within. Change your world by changing your thinking.
  19. 19. How to develop a healthy self image 1. Accept yourself (I am gay) 2. Celebrate and appreciate your uniqueness (Blessing not curse) 3. Realise true happiness is never determined by physical appearance 4. Set realistic goals
  20. 20. 5. Develop a confidence in your value as a person 6. Deal with the negative images from the past 7. Be a person of integrity and live authentically 8. Improve yourself How to develop a healthy self image
  21. 21. 9. Become conscious of inner self-talk 10. Speak positively about yourself, other LGBT people and the community 11. Don’t blame take responsibility 12. Forgive others and yourself “When we choose to live authentically, we chip away at others’ prisons of pretend”. How to develop a healthy self image
  22. 22. ‘People who exist at the margins of society are very much like Alice in Wonderland. They are not required to make the tough decision to risk their lives by embarking on an adventure of self- discovery. They have already been thrust beyond the city’s walls that keep ordinary people at a safe distance from the unknown. For at least some outsiders, “alienation” has destroyed traditional presumptions of identity and opened up the mythic hero’s path to the possibility of discovery.
  23. 23. What some outsiders discover in their adventures on the other side of the looking glass is the courage to repudiate self-contempt and recognise their “alienation” as a precious gift of freedom from arbitrary norms that they did not make and did not sanction. At the moment a person questions the validity of the rules, the victim is no longer a victim.’ Jamake Highwater
  24. 24. “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others”. Marianne Williamson
  25. 25. Anthony Venn-Brown Coach – Speaker – Consultant Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International info@gayambassador.com www.gayambassador.com Twitter: Facebook: YouTube: Blog gayambassador Autobiography A Life of Unlearning © 2013 Anthony Venn-Brown

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