Essay On Looking Glass Self Theory


When we make decisions and experience things, we often express them as being our own, ours. When we think about why we made those decisions and why we experience things we come to realize that we are affected by society to make decisions for us. There are many outside societal factors that influence our beliefs and values which in return affect how and why we make decisions.

I had the wonderful opportunity to attend a public school for 13 years of education. From every circumstance my peers brought various sets of values,perspectives and beliefs to my learning environment. People with different backgrounds bring new information simply being exposed to diversity in my classrooms made me have an open mind when looking at the real world. Though social diversity in a group can cause discomfort, rougher interactions, a lack of trust, greater perceived interpersonal conflict, more concern about disrespect, and other problems. It helps gain respect for those unlike yourself from a non-judgemental and prejudice perspective. 

Living in the city compared to living in the suburbs or going to a private school helped me discover the type of person I am today.  Public schooling helped me develop the way I wanted to be seen and treated, I always got taught the “golden rule” to treat others how you wanted to be treated.i had a teammate of mine once say the N-word while we were warming up to play, and i really didn't know how to act upon it because i was always taught that white people shouldn't say it  Although I did have access to a private education it was very important to my family for me to go to a public school. With having a more privileged background, schools that I attended and the people I hung out with made me reflect on how some things I get to enjoy freely others don't get the opportunity to experience that luxury.

Looking glass theory lays the foundation of how a person self grows in life based on the social interaction of that person,the influence of a certain group on the mind-set of that person. Situations involving people will sometimes put us in a self doubt or a feeling of insecurity 

In modern day society, social media has become an important  part of our lives. It has created a platform for people to instantly share information and communicate with people all around the world. It is influential on our lives because of how easily we are able to access these various ways of communication. I’m interested in the effects that social networking has on people’s perceptions of their self-worth.  The way that social media took over my life, I am not the ideal beauty standard that is projected.  I used to scroll through pictures daily on instagram of women with “The perfect body”  the pictures were always of them half naked on the beach somewhere or in the gym with tight fitting clothes. Looking at pictures like this daily makes you conscious about the way you look and thinking about what things you should and should post on your own social platform, which can cause other things to happen.  The constant comparison to someone else's life can result in depression, comparing your own low  lifestyle to someone else's high maintenance lifestyle where they have all this money and they look good while doing whatever it is they are doing. You never know what is going on behind the stage photos/videos,you only see the “good” never the bad.

Most of  the social networking sites seem to measure the popularity level of the  status of its users. All have a number of ‘followers’ which if there’s a high number of followers that seems to boost a person’s popularity level and  their online status. This in return can cause a lift  in self-esteem or a ego rise, whereas if their follower level is low it may provoke that user into being upset. All of these sites also offer areas where followers can ‘like’ pictures or posts, ‘comment’ on these pictures/posts, ‘share’ the post, and what have you.  In middle school when instagram was becoming a big deal, my friends and i used to compare how many followers and likes we got on our pages. Over the course of my life I started to grow up, going into high school stopped caring about how many people followed me, how many likes and comments I got and what I posted. If I liked the picture I was gonna post it. 

When I involve social media with my life it relates back to in class with symbolic interaction and functionalist theory. The functionalist theory sees society as a complex system with parts that work together to promote solidarity and stability.  While social networking sells us goods and entertaining us, it also serves to help us pass along norms, values, and beliefs to the next generation. We are socialized and personalized by the media through our whole lives. Media teaches us what is good and desirable, how we should speak, how we should behave, and how we should react to events. Symbolic interaction studies social interaction and self awareness, media creates symbols that become the basis of our shared understanding of society. Through social media we define and project our identity,This process creates what is called a “social looking glass” and a “divided self”.  Our communications act as camouflage that mirrors back to what we wish to convey ourselves. Through continued communication, we then work to resolve the space between who we are and who we present ourselves to be.

 

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