5 reasons A Mirror Can't Really Tell You How You Look Like

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Can a mirror tell you how you really look like?

Some people don't like the way they look in photos simply because they aren't photogenic. Many of those people know that the camera picture doesn't represent the way they look like in real life.

But when it comes to a mirror you can rest assured that it will reflect to you your real looks, Right?

No that's totally incorrect, the way our eyes perceives different objects including our own picture in a mirror is subject to so many modifications that are done by the brain before we actually see those objects.

In Other words, you might look in a mirror and never see how the real you looks like! Confused yet? then keep reading to unfold the mystery.

5 reasons A Mirror Can't Really Tell You How You Look Like

  • 1) Distracted perception: Your brain always modifies the images you see before you see them. When was the last time you saw a close friend then upon coming closer to him you found that he is someone else? Your brain alters the visual signals you receive then send you the modified images. In other words if you think that you are fat you can actually see yourself fat in the mirror even if you were actually slim. People who suffer from anorexia nervosa always see themselves in a different way in the mirror than the way others see them. (see also How your beliefs affect your perception)
  • 2) You see what you are scared of: If you fear dogs for example then i am sure it happened to you more than once that you thought that a bag or any other object was a dog. Our perception is always alerted by our brains to help us find the objects or the things we fear faster in order to be able to protect ourselves from possible threats. Now if you fear looking old then most probably you will see yourself looking older in the mirror even if you still look young (see also Why do some people believe they are unattractive
  • 3) Focusing on what you don't like: Once your brain focuses on an object it appears bigger and more important than its really is. If you don't like a scar on your face for example then you are very likely to see it bigger than its really is when you look in the mirror. The same happens when you dislike any of your facial features, you just see them in totally different way than the way others see them. (see also How your brain interferes with your sight)
  • 4) Discarding important data: When you dislike a person you usually overlook all the good things he does and only focus on the bad ones. The same kind of deletion happens with your face and body. In the Solid Self confidence program i said that people who don't like their looks usually skip their good looking features or body parts and only focus on the ones they don't like.
  • 5) Your mood affects the way you see things: If you looked in the mirror right after doing great in a test or making any other achievement then you will find yourself more attractive than you really are while if you looked in the mirror while you were already down then most probably you will see yourself through a different lens (see how your emotions affect your perception of the world)

So what?

Make sure you become aware of the tricks your mind plays on you all the time so that you don't end up thinking that you are less attractive than you really are.

By educating yourself well about these perception errors you can protect your beliefs about your looks and maintain a healthy mental self image. The Solid confidence program was launched by 2knowmyself.com; the program will either help you become more confident or give you your money back.

2knowmyself is not a complicated medical website nor a boring online encyclopedia but rather a place where you will find simple, to the point and effective information that is backed by psychology and presented in a simple way that you can understand and apply. If you think that this is some kind of marketing hype then see what other visitors say about 2knowmyself.

Want to know more?

Why do we find some people unattractive

How your experience database affects your perception of attractiveness

How incorrect perception affects self confidence

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