The Johari Window, A Valuable Tool For Getting To Know Yourself Better

Last updated by Lauren Hart

When we’re getting to know ourselves, we rarely turn our attention to others, but rather to our inner world. That’s a mistake! All too often neglected, other people’s view of us is just as important for learning more about ourselves. There’s a valuable tool we can use to find out how we’re perceived from the outside: the Johari Window. But what is it? How can it help us to get to know ourselves better? We’ll explain it all to you!

The Johari Window, A Valuable Tool For Getting To Know Yourself Better

What is the Johari window?

The Johari window was created by two American psychologists, Joseph Luft (Jo) and Harry Ingham (Hari). They were inspired by neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) to develop an analytical tool. They define it as follows:

“This model, divided into four quadrants, represents the degree of knowledge of the other person and of yourself in relationships between individuals. It reflects the different interactions between an individual and the group in which he or she evolves.”

The Johari window is therefore useful for getting to know yourself better and communicating with others. This tool makes it easy to gather constructive feedback. It’s very interesting to know what image those around us perceive in order to build solid interpersonal relationships.

👋 You may be interested in this article: Why are people incapable of apologizing?

The 4 areas of the Johari window

The Johari window is divided into 4 categories: the open area, the blind spot, the hidden area, and the unknown area. The aim of this tool is to develop the open area, while reducing the other 3 areas:

- Johari window -

The open area

This is information about us that’s known to others. This includes behavior, attitudes, feelings, beliefs, experiences, etc. In short, it’s the entire part of ourselves that we give to others so that they get to know us a little better 🤗.

The blind spot

We enter the zone of information that we send back to others. The blind spot is aptly named because we’re not aware of the very image we’re sending out. What’s more, we can sometimes behave or react in a manner that others interpret in ways we’re not aware of. Non-verbal communication, language tics, slips of the tongue... these are all things we don’t think about. If this area is very large, it could mean that there’s too much susceptibility or inflexibility 😕.

The hidden area

This is what we don’t want to show and which is hidden behind a façade. We’re aware of this part of ourselves, but we don’t want to reveal it. It’s often deep feelings, fears, intimate thoughts, memories, etc. So, for example, we may suffer from severe impostor syndrome, while at the same time projecting an image of a very confident person in order to ensure we don’t show this aspect of ourselves 🤕.

The unknown area

This is the totally unknown part of ourselves, which of course is also unknown to others. These are aspects of our personality that we’re unaware of. For example, there may be untapped potential or emotions that are deeply buried within us. This area needs to be reduced more and more through introspection, in order to get to know ourselves better.

How do you use the Johari window?

The Johari window is really about getting to know yourself better and communicating more easily with others in order to forge deep, sincere bonds. But how do you do this? You need to apply these solutions:

1 – Ask for feedback to reduce your blind spot

Feedback is essential for learning how you’re perceived by others. However, it’s important not only to ask for feedback, but also to welcome both positive and negative criticism. Of course, criticism must be constructive if it’s to be taken on board. You need to be able to put your ego and susceptibility aside to listen to what others have to say, and thus become aware of aspects of yourself that you didn’t know before.

👋 You may be interested in this article: Why is questioning yourself so important?

2 – Share to reduce your hidden area

Having a shell is useless, in the sense that it doesn’t really protect us. On the contrary, it puts distances between ourselves and everything that matters. So we need to open up and expose our vulnerabilities with authenticity. How 🤔? By expressing our thoughts, emotions and needs to others. You need to do this through the use of non-violent communication to respect others. Of course, there’s always the possibility of keeping a secret garden, but a hidden area that’s too big reflects a need for control that cuts us off from others and from ourselves.

3 – Let go to reduce your unknown area

This is undoubtedly the most complicated aspect of the process. However, learning to let go allows you to go beyond yourself and reveal who you really are. So you shouldn’t hesitate to make changes, experiment with new things, embrace the newness or even get out of your comfort zone. The best thing about all this? You’ll achieve real fulfillment, with less stress and greater self-confidence. Isn’t that motivation enough to try the Johari window 😉?

Editor’s note: Become a better person

The Johari window is an excellent way of increasing self-awareness so that you can be a better person, both for yourself and for others. It teaches you to live in a more fulfilling way and to manage your emotions better. However, these kinds of tools aren’t easy to put in place, especially if you find it hard to take a step back. Doing a few coaching sessions can be a good way to make progress, so why not give it a try? Making progress is so rewarding, it makes all the difference!

🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!

#BornToBeMe

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Article presented by Lauren Hart

Writing is a beautiful means of expression that I cannot do without. It has allowed me to channel my hypersensitivity, plus I love writing about psychology and personal development. For me, self-understanding is the best way to move forward!

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