Developing self-awareness in ourselves and others

I've recently been working with a client on a corporate self-leadership program and in doing so revisited the Johari Window model. It's an oldie but a goodie!

The very best thing about this model is that is is named after its two creators Joseph Luft and Harry Ingham (Jo-Harry). I have aspirations to do something similar one day - what better way to immortalise yourself than in a framework of self awareness?!

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But in all seriousness, it's a brilliant model, it's simple but communicates so much.

The model shows how we develop self-awareness and growth. We start with the concept that there is a part of us that is known to ourselves and others. This is the 'open' part of us, sometimes called 'the arena'. This is where many of us operate at work.

But the model reminds us that there is so much more to us than what we are already aware of and what we choose to show others.

There are our blind spots - the things that others can see in us that we cannot see ourselves. We can move these things into our self awareness via effective feedback from others.

Then there are the things that we know about ourselves, but choose not to share. These may be hidden talents, fears, wants or needs. We can selectively move these into the arena through trusting relationships.

And then we have the unknowns - the things that neither we nor others know about ourselves. We can move these things into the arena through self discovery. This might include pushing ourselves out of our comfort zone, trying new tasks, exposing ourselves to new situations and so on.


Such a brilliant, simple model and a really effective way to frame your own plans for growth. As a freelancer, I have very little opportunity to review my blind spots in an organised way, so revisiting this model has inspired me to ask some trusted clients and collaborators for feedback. And I'll keep exposing myself to those unknowns to learn more about myself and what I'm capable of!

I'd love to know what you think of this model and if it inspires you to look at your personal development in new ways?

Isabelle Fielding_Logo Mark

"I partner with you to move your teams from good to great"

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