The ‘Fimage Factor’ is Fear of IMAGE.
If we were to summarize in a word why people wear masks, it would be FIMAGE.
People spend thousands of dollars and hours every year to cultivate their personal image. This image defines them. People begin to develop this image in early adolescence and by the time they are adults, they are heavily invested in this image.
This image can help us when it portrays confidences, competence and enthusiasm. In some cases it can also hold people back from reaching their potential.
How do you respond to your friends versus strangers? How do you act in new situations? Why? What do you do when you walk into a new place with people you don’t know? What causes us to behave in this way?
Everyone has a little voice in their head. This voice talks to us and can help us make decisions. When we are in new situations this voice can become very loud. Your voice may be asking “What do people think of me?” “Where should I sit?” “Am I dressed all right?”
Humans are afraid of many different things. Some people are afraid of death. Others are afraid of snakes, or spiders or ghosts. One common fear relates to personal image.
Fear of Image is when maintaining the image becomes more important than learning. A person can be afraid of losing their image. They become afraid of looking silly or “un-cool”. This is Fear of Image. People choose not to take a risk that may affect their image even though they know it may also lead to new learning and growth. Fear of Image can hold people back from making new friends. It can also prevent people from having fun and enjoying themselves in new situations.
In many team settings, people will not ask for help. If I ask for help, you may think I don’t know what I am doing. I am supposed to know what I am doing. If I ask for help, what might think?
What is your Fear of Image keeping you from doing?
*Adapted from Camp True North