I've been reflecting a good bit about image lately, and what all of that means on a personal level as well as a social one. What kind of image do I want to project? What image do people currently have about me--and is it accurate? It that image what I want it to be? There are things about me that I like, and other things I want to change. Some of those changes might happen quickly, others may take years.
I remember in my first job after college, one of the comments made from a co-worker was that some of the teens I worked with thought I was flighty. That came as a big surprise to me, because I was concerned that I was being too serious. Flighty was not an image (or reputation) I wanted. Honestly, I was a little offended for a while, but worked on my skills there, and it paid off.
Later, during my teaching days, a church I used to pass by on a semi-regular basis, had a marquis sign out front. One of the messages I still remember (after 10-15 years) is, "You can measure a person's character by what he does when no one's looking."
I know image and character aren't exactly the same, but they're a bit intertwined, in my book. I think both image and character take behind-the-scenes work, and you can backslide on both by what you do, whether or not anyone's watching.