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Personal frame

The personal frame refers to the image about ourselves that we construct internally, that is, it refers to the individual as a frame or locus of identity. This frame may be perceived as being parallel to a person’s self-image, self-esteem or feelings about self, self-concept, self-cognitions, and a spiritual sense of being. According to Hecht, Collier, and Ribeau, the personal frame provides an understanding of how people define themselves in general, as well as, in specific situations. For instance, an individual who says “I am intelligent” is articulating a personal identity (Hecht, Collier, and Ribeau, 1993). While there are many facets that relate to personal identity, the most common facet is health. The commonly studied personal identities under the health facet are ethnicity, gender and health identity. How then does one determine his or her identity through the personal frame?

One way of evoking identity in communication design according to Bandura is through perceptions of self-efficacy or the belief that an individual can successfully execute the learned demeanor (Bandura, 1977). The process involves making a plan or jotting down goals or objects which upon achievement will render the individual a better person. Many health practitioners advocate for this process in that the gratification of attaining a particular task or objective motivates a person to want to be a better individual, thus, influencing his or her behavior and identity. A good example is Fagerlin, Zikmund-Fisher and Ubel’s directive to convince women to take contraceptives on the basis that it would make them better people by performing the said behavior (Fagerlin, Zikmund-Fisher and Ubel, 2007). Notwithstanding, the goal-setting is not a viable behavior -changing strategy if a person

does not believe that he or she can attain the goal, that is, the inability of self-efficacy. In this regard, Hecht, Marsiglia et al. reiterate that the renowned anti-drug use keeping it REAL campaign is only effective if it achieves its goal teaching students to resist peer pressure related drug and substance use and maintain desired behavior and identity (Hecht, Marsiglia et al., 2003).

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