The perception, mental image, or conception that we create of the person or even ourselves comes naturally to human beings. A number of incidents build up over time to help us create an image or perception of someone, not that it may be bang on, but it in a way really helps in defining or interacting with someone.
Factors such as what you wear, what you have done in life till today, what your goals are, and what you think and feel largely influence the way people create a mental image of you. The image can be a positive one if a person applies a confident approach to things or life in general. Or a negative one, if an approach which is full of doubt on capabilities, looks, or ideas is shown.
It is a widely perceived theory that image is defined by events that affect a person—having back-to-back movie hits, a blossoming relationship, etc. Others believe that a person’s image can help shape those events. Both theories in a way can be proved right. Failing at something can certainly affect that ‘feel good’ phase, just as feeling good about something or even one’s self can lead to better performance on a project. But it is undeniable that one’s image can have a very strong impact on your happiness, and your outlook on life can affect those around you. If you project a positive self-image, people will be more likely to see you as a positive and capable person.
So what can we categorize in the negative sector? With reference to Bollywood and the show business –unwanted brawls, display of temper (on the higher side), involvement in activities that may lead to numerous visits to the court, etc., can portray a negative image. While some may argue that any publicity is good publicity and point out that controversies have no effect on Salman Khan’s image, we would humbly like to disagree. At a point when he was bent on portraying a ‘bad boy’ image, it was noted that he had seen a sharp decline not only in work but also in the number of fans. His case also reasons with our point that satiations may attribute in image change (read: bitter break up). It was only when he decided to change his image for good that he was once again placed on the pinnacle of stardom.
Moving on to the positive side of the image, it is a hard state to create or to maintain. Creating a positive, good, or pleasing image takes a whole new level of dedication altogether. Free from controversies, being a role model, and heavy involvement in charity is a sure way to gain this image. Amitabh Bachchan has been a permanent member in this category.
One of the frequently searched questions on Google is, “Can we make over our image or are we pretty much stuck with what we were born with?” Experience states that even a basic fundamental image can be changed over time with a little help and dedication. Introverts becoming extrovert, risk-takers becoming cautious, and emotionally unexpressive people becoming emotionally intimate, later in life are stories that can be frequently heard. Even if the overall image remains relatively constant, we can certainly remove personality traits and insert new ones.
Simple methods such as changing one’s name have been adapted to change an image. Name is the first factor that a subconscious mind considers before instantly creating an image of a person. The old statement of, “What’s in a name?” by William Shakespeare falls right on the face in this case. For example, Akshay Kumar; can you associate him with the name Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia? It was on the suggestion by experts that he change his name for a cooler and better image, and true to its word, it did work out. Salman Khan used the method of self-improvement to change his image for the better. His days of displaying anger in the public, bitter breakups, and drunken brawls are behind him. He first had his life sorted by identifying his problems and accepting it. What followed was clarity in life, and a goal to work for. His has been the most inspiring image makeover till date in the Bollywood fraternity.
Defining goals and following them with dedication and hard work has the tendency of creating a clean image. Take Shah Rukh Khan, for example, his well-defined goals have been a major factor in creating a worthy image. It is widely known that the actor had always had his eyes on stardom and the pleasures of life that come along with it.
However, an image makeover must be done carefully, preferably with the help of a Celebrity Image Management expert. It is of utmost importance that image be both positive and realistic. Having an image that is unrealistic or over- the- top may draw negative and unwanted reactions.