The Johari Window

Abstract

This paper provides the understanding of self by the application of a tool known as the Johari Window. The Johari Window provides a systemic model designed to enhance effective relationships within group and self. The Johari window helps people to analyze themselves by laying simple ways for self-evaluation. There are four boxes of Johari window that enhances the understanding of self. These four components are: open, blind, hidden, and unknown The application of the Johari window in real life situation can help one to improve his communication skills, improve on the self-esteem, and build long lasting trust with others. Self-disclosures involve risk taking and trusting others that they will positively respond to your personality. People cannot know the hidden areas unless it is shared. The more the personal information is shared enhance how other people know you.  The Johari might be helpful on overcoming conflict in intimate relationship with others. On the same note, the Johari window may be useful in enhancing relationships at the workplace.

 Own Johari Window with a friend

Now let me explore what I perceive as my personal Johari. My open area relates to my religious affiliation. All my friends, relatives, and family members know that I’m a very staunch Christian. They always see me going to church and taking an active role in religious practices such as singing and preaching. Secondly, my friend knows that I’m a very big fan of soccer. I rarely miss major soccer events unless I’m very busy. Therefore, people know that am a religious and very social person. On the other hand, my friend seems to know something about me that I do not understand. He always introduces me to some challenges in life and I reap big. Also, there is something that I have never revealed to my friend. He has never known that I’m an addict of wine, since I only drink it secretly in my room. Then there is something that we both don’t know and we can’t talk about.

General Overview of Own Johari Window

The Johari window helps somebody to analyze themselves by laying simple ways for self-evaluation. There are four boxes of Johari window that enhances the understanding of self. These four components are: open, blind, hidden, and unknown (Trenholm, Jensen, & Hambly, 2010). These spaces imply areas that are unknown to others, known to others, known to self, and unknown to self. All these four concepts represent important components of the Johari Window.

The things that are known by me and also known by others represent the open area. Revealing it to others enables them to understand me better (Lim & Jamil, 2013). Therefore, it helps to reduce the need for defensiveness. Revealing my personal information helps others also to reveal their personal information in return. In this regard, self-disclosure is beneficial as it leads to stable self-image and enhances personal self-esteem (John & Balmer, 2008).

The second part of the Johari window is the blind area that is not known to self, but can be communicated to others through non-verbal communication (Ibarra & Petriglieri, 2010). It is necessary to understand this area to avoid interpersonal conflicts with others. Therefore, it is necessary to be very sensitive to both the verbal and not verbal communication that is communicated to others. People need to aim at reducing the levels of ignorance and increase their self-awareness by seeking feedbacks from friends and colleagues.  

The other section of the Johari window presents an area that is known to ourselves, but is unwilling to explain to others. We fear how people may react to their knowledge of such sensitive areas of our life. People have different reasons for concealing their personal attributes. However, it is important to develop reflective skills that would support critical understanding of the attitudes and the motives (Hardy, Bean, & Olsen, 2015). This will help a person to be genuine and honest in approaching various challenges of life.

The other pane of the Johari window represents an area that is me and others are totally unaware of. We can only assume that such an area exists because they influence our behavior with other people. This area can only be reduced by self-discovery and observations of various aspects of personal life (Trenholm, Jensen, & Hambly, 2010). Therefore, people understand me as a very social person who lovers to understand the social events such as soccer. The area that seems unknown to me, but people seem to understand better are my temperament. I have overheard people say on several occasions that I’m a very hot tempered. To me, I have never seen how hot tempered behavior is in me. However, people fear direct confrontations with me due to my perceived hot tempered behavior.

There is a part of my life that is only known to me. Even my closest friends seem not to know it. I tend to conceal these truths to people for various reasons (Afolabi, 1993). For example, I fear walking in the darkness. The fear is so strong that even when I walk with my friends in the darkness I still feel terrible. Due to this, I usually come up with various excuses whenever anything that would require walking in the darkness arises. When I have no otherwise, I would walk with them in the darkness, but hold them close. Usually, they think that I’m holding them in the darkness as a matter of love or compassion. However, the reality is that I’m holding in them the darkness to give me comfort from my fears and hide my fears from them. The other secret I keep from my friends is my love for wine. None of my friends have seen me drinking. However, they do not know that I shop for wine and hide them in my bedroom. I only drink such wine in the middle of the night when nobody can access my room. Most of my friends are very religious and I fear that they may not take my drinking problem lightly.

I also think that there is an attribute within me that I don’t know and is also not known to anybody. I have never taken an active role in my talent search. However, I know that there is one sporting activity that I can perform the best. It may be swimming, skating, wrestling, running, or anything else. If I can realize this hidden potential, I maximize on it and perform better. My friends also cannot help me to realize this potential since they have not understood it. Let me hope that I may realize it in my future life and explore it to the fullest. 

How was the Johari window useful in understanding of sense of self

According to Trenholm, Jensen, & Hambly (2010), the Johari window is very useful tool for the understanding of self. First, the Johari Window can help in improving your communication skills while interacting with other people in the society. In addition, the Johari window allows for one to explore the potential hidden talents that can be explored to enhance productivity in life (Afolabi, 1993). On the same note, the Johari window helps someone to develop self-awareness and relationships with others. The ability of a person to develop metacognitive potential and improve the personal level of understanding is very important for success.

Why is self-disclosure so challenging?

People often encounter several challenges during self-disclosure (Trenholm, Jensen, & Hambly, 2010). These challenges make people to shy away from disclosing information concerning them. One of the challenges of self-disclosure is the potential negative perception from the audience of such information. Everyone would want to be taken positively from whatever perspective. However, it is not always the case as people have different perceptions in life. Therefore, a person will be reluctant to disclose self-information upon realizing that such information may not be taken positively. The other challenge of self-disclosure relates to the fear of breaking the trust that had initially developed between one person to another (Ibrarra & Petriglieri, 2015). Sometimes people conceal some information from others because such information may break the trust between them. In such a case, a person may value the trust so much and may refuse to disclose sensitive information to the other. Self-disclosure is also challenging due to potential mockery from others. According Trenholm, Jensen, & Hambly (2010), the biggest block to creativity comes with the fear of being judged. People hold to potentially interesting ideas for fear that their ideas by sound silly. On the same note, self-disclosure may be challenging due to possible rejection from other members of the society. For example, a gay student may be slow to disclose such information to class members due to possible mockery and rejection from them. Therefore, such a student may prefer not to disclose such information to others. According Trenholm, Jensen, & Hambly (2010), the society places a high premium on conformity and people with unique characters such as gays fear of being ridiculed.

How The Johari Window might be useful in overcoming conflict in

Intimate relationship

The Johari might be helpful on overcoming conflict in intimate relationship with others (Schwartz et al, 2012). First, Johari window might be useful in overcoming conflict in intimate relationships by increasing the factors in the open area. When the shared knowledge of the expectations, experiences, and knowledge is increased, there are high chances that an atmosphere is mutual trust be developed. On the same note, there will be more respect among the friends that share intimate relationship due to their better understanding of their colleagues. Some conflicts are also bound to arise when people are ignorant of their blind area. Therefore, an individual needs to as his friends and colleagues for feedback as this enhances the understanding of the blind area. By doing this, the possible self-ignorance will be reduced, leading to reduce conflicts among the intimate friends. For example, there was an instance in my life when my tone of voice was being misinterpreted for being rude to others. I was in a company of new friends within the campus and they would not understand why I was talking and responding roughly to them. I realized that they were avoiding me due to my perceived rudeness towards them. However, I was the problem since I had to reveal to them that I had throat complications and was still under some medical process. One day, I approached them and told them that the tone of my voice has changed due to throat complications. From that day, they accepted me back and we no longer had conflicts.

 

Professional of work context

The first pane of the Johari window can be effectively be explored to reduce potential conflicts within the professional context. By increasing the levels of self-disclosure, a person is likely to build trust and acceptance within the professional context. Most professionals would be reluctant to accept to deal with the person they have little understanding about. In such a scenario, there are high chances of distrust and rejection within the professional context. Within the professional context, self-image helps to boost self-esteem and enhances acceptance among the colleagues. In a relationship with a manager, there are several relevant personal information that needs to be shared. For example, my relationship with my manager is open and very honest as we share relevant personal information about ourselves. Therefore, there are no conflicts within our working environment since it’s like a second home to us (Stockdale, 2013). There was a time when I needed to take some time to attend to family issues that were affecting my productivity within the workplace. Since the manager understands me better, he allowed me to take the leave without any hesitation. Initially, I was afraid that the manager might refuse the leave request, but I realized that he was fully aware of my challenges to the extent he could not refuse my requests. Therefore, my reason for taking leave was entirely accepted due to the relevant initial information that I had shared that enhanced my acceptance within the workplace.

 

References

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