Two Psychologists, Joe Luft & Harrington Ingham gave a beautiful concept which helps us in exploring the answer of many riddles of life. They said that whatever happens in our life depends upon how much we are actually aware of our inner being and at the same time how much others know about it in a true sense.
The concept says that there are certain things which we are aware of and certain things which we are not aware of or which we do not consciously realize. Similarly, there are certain things others are aware of and certain things which others do not know. Thus, at a given point of time in life, we may see our total being as we understand it and as others know about it in a true sense through the following window which Joe & Harry named as Johari Window:
KNOWN TO SELF
NOT KNOWN TO SELF
KNOWN TO OTHERS
OPEN (ARENA) (A)
NOT KNOWN TO OTHERS
The important clues which this window gives to us are:
Whatever is there in Open or A leads to success and happiness in life. If a person knows that he is good in listening to others and understanding them and others also know about it, others will have more faith in him and he is likely to get good success in his interpersonal relations.
Whatever is there in our closed area makes us uncomfortable. If it is something positive, it is in closed area either because of our hesitation or inertia or because we did not spend enough time on it to strengthen it further. If a person has got good stamina but he never works hard, it is of no use. There are some negative aspects within our closed area which denote our fears and which reduce our trustworthiness. However, when we collect the courage of bringing our weaknesses in open and start working to overcome them, they become our strength.
There are certain things which others understand about us but we do not realize. If they are positive, they are of no use unless we know about them. If they are negative, they reduce our respectability and make us vulnerable to unannounced problems which we may have to encounter without being prepared to face them. If a person has a habit of using wrong words or rough language while talking to others it may lead him to some interpersonal issue unawaresely.
The most important aspects of life are hidden in the DARK which neither we realize nor others understand them. Our deep rooted fears or our deeply buried talents lie in the Dark area. We realize them when we face a big challenge. At times, we feel highly confident of ourselves after successfully facing a tough situation because we then realize that we can exercise patience or we have the ability to work hard or to learn new skills more than we ever thought earlier.
The most important clue which JOHARI WINDOW gives is that the more developed is our OPEN Area, the more comfortable and Successful we are likely to be in life. We should constantly work to enlarge our OPEN area by way of:
strengthening our qualities and putting them in positive use,
being more introspective and open to self-assessment;
overcoming our weaknesses, and
accepting various types of challenges in life for realising our deeply hidden qualities and for winning over our deep rooted fears.