Johari Window Essay

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Self-awareness is defined as “an individual’s ability to understand one’s feelings, even as they change from moment to moment.” (Abrahams,2007). self-awareness refers to the person’s potential to become an object of one’s own attention (Duval &Wicklund,1972), in which the person actively identifies, processes, and stores information about the self. Which means it is an awareness of one’s own mental state like perception, sensations, emotions, attitudes, and intentions. According to (Gowing, 2001; Jacobs, 2001 Macaleer and Shannon, 2003; Zuckerman et al.,1976; Mirvis, 2008) self-awareness involves understanding the appropriate emotional responses to situations by extending the base of emotional recognition that leaders possess.

The Johari window model is a simple psychological tool that is used for demonstrating and improving self-awareness and providing mutual understanding between individuals within a group, it is an information processing tool. Johari window is created by the two psychologists Joseph Luft and Harry Ingham in 1955. This tool is mostly used for understanding and training self-awareness, and personal development, and improving communication, interpersonal relationship, group dynamics, and inter-group relationships. This model is a very great and useful model because it can be used in a variety of environments and situations and also due to its simplicity. The Johari window represents information like feelings experience, knowledge skills, attitude, views motivation, etc. Within or about a person in relation to their groups from four perspectives

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In the Johari window, there are four different quadrants: open/free area( what the person knows about him/herself which is also known by others), blind area(what the person is unknown about him/herself but others are aware of), hidden area(what the person known about him/herself that others are unaware) and unknown area(what the person is unknown about him/herself and is also unknown by others).

  1. Open/Free Area - Known to self
  2. Blind Area - Not known to self
  3. Hidden Area - Known to others
  4. Unknown Area - Not known to others

Quadrant 1 (Open or Free Area)

In this area, the information about the person like their behavior, attitudes, experience, feelings skills, and views are known by the person and also known by others /groups

The open area or free area which is also known as “the arena” is the space was good communication and cooperation occur free from distraction, misunderstanding, confusion, and conflict. The open area can also be increased or expanded by reducing the hidden area when the person discloses/reveals information about him/herself to group members or to another person.

Quadrant 2 (Blind Area)

In this area what information others know about the person is unknown to the person him/herself. This blind area is not productive or effective for individuals or groups. This area could also be defined as the area of ignorance of oneself. The group members can help the people to reduce their blind area by conducting feedback solicitation which is done by understanding and listening to the feedback from another person, in this way the open area can be expanded horizontally by decreasing the blind area.

Quadrant 3 (Hidden area)

This area is what the person is aware of him/herself but is unaware of others. Here the hidden represents the person’s information, experience, hidden agendas, manipulative intentions, feelings, etc. Anything that is known to the person about him/herself is not revealed to others. This area can be reduced through disclosure. People should reveal their information at the depth that they personally feel comfortable with.

Quadrant 4 (Unknown area)

This is the area where the person is unknown about him/herself as well as others. The person will be unaware till they discover their hidden qualities and capabilities by observing others. large unknown areas would be expected in younger people and people who lack experience and self-belief.

Limitation of Johari window

On the other hand, there are some drawbacks to the Johari window. For example, some people may pass on unwanted information that they received than desire, also there are some things that are better not to communicate with others ( for example, large failures, sexual behavior, mental health problems).and some people may react negatively, and aggressively.

My personal learning

The class started with an interesting ice-breaking section where, Veerapandian sir presented a video of a dance performance with four simple steps and asked students to make three groups and imitate the same steps in groups, which was really fun. After the ice-breaking section, we moved to the next task in which each student was given a small sheet of paper and was asked to write each other’s qualities. Also, there was the instruction that only when the task finishes the students can go through their sheet and check what all qualities have others written. After the task finished, we got 5-10 minutes to go through the sheets. I was very curious to check what others have written about me and when I read it, I felt very excited that some of them have written some qualities that were unknown to me, also some qualities of mine which I was already aware of.

Later Veera Pandian sir started the academic session with a new chapter of understanding the self. He thought us about what is Johari window model and its four different quadrants. When sir was teaching the 4 quadrants of the Johari window, I was able to compare those qualities that others have written during the task to each of the quadrants. For example, someone wrote I am very innocent which I was unknown, this was in my blind area which I came to know through the feedback from others. After this session, I got the most awareness about my strengths, and weaknesses and also some new information that I was unaware of.

Professional learning

From this class, I gained much information about the Johari window which I can use with clients who have difficulties with their personal development, interpersonal development, to improve communication, etc. I can use this model to make people aware of his/her strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats through feedback solicitation. Feedback solicitation means sharing information such as feelings, opinions, experiences, and motivation on an individual or group basis.

Even I can use this with a group of people to develop mutual trust among group members and within myself, by broadening the open space and being continuously aware of this, the mutual trust with others will increase. The hidden area and blind area will shrink if there is more knowledge of each other and if one is going to discuss issues in an open manner.

Overall, the class was very useful for me. I was able to collect more information about the Johari window and also, and I can use this in the future to help clients to improve their personal development, communication, and interpersonal relationships. Also, I was able to compare my qualities with the 4 quadrants of the Johari window, this made me feel very confident and know more about myself.


  1. · Abrahams, D. A. “Emotional intelligence and Army leadership”. Military Review, vol.2, (2007) pp 86-93
  2. · Duval, S., and Wicklund, R. A. “A theory of objective self-awareness” (1972) New York: Academic Press.
  3. · Gowing, M. “Measurement of individual emotional competence”. In Cherniss, C., and Goleman, D., The emotionally intelligent workplace, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass (2001) pp 83-131
  4. · Malcolm Higgs, “Do Leaders Need Emotional Intelligence?: A Study of the Relationship between Emotional Intelligence and Leadership Of Change”, International Journal of Organization Behavior, vol.5 no.6, (2002) pp. 195-212
  5. · Mirvis, p.” Executive development through consciousness-raising experiences”. Academy of Management Learning and Education, vol7no.2, (2008) Pp 173-188
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