Thursday, 6 January 2011
You likely see yourself very differently from the way others see you. A little self-awareness can prevent a lot of misunderstanding.
By Sam Gosling, published on September 01, 2009 - last reviewed on September 15, 2010
The difference between how you see yourself and how others see you is not just a matter of egocentrism. Like Kirsten, we all have blind spots. We change our self-conception when we see ourselves through others' eyes. Part of the discrepancy arises because the outsider's perspective affords information you yourself miss—like the fact that it looks like you're scowling when you're listening, or that you talk over other people How well we understand ourselves has a profound impact on our ability to navigate the social realm. In some areas, we know ourselves better than others do. But in other areas, we're so biased by our need to see ourselves in a good light that we become strangers to ourselves. By soliciting feedback from other people, we can learn more about ourselves and how we're coming off. Only by understanding how we're seen can we make sure we're sending the right signals. To be understood by others, in other words, the first step is understanding ourselves.
There Is No Perfect Point of View
How do you cut through the fog and learn to see yourself—and others—clearly? Different perspectives provide different information on the self. To bring some order to all the things that can be known about you, it helps to divide them into four categories.
First, there are "bright spots"—things known by both you and others, like the fact that you're politically conservative or talkative. Studies show that traits like extroversion, talkativeness, and dominance are easily observable both to the self and to others. If everyone thinks you're a chatterbox, you probably are.
Second are "dark spots"—things known by neither you nor others. These could include deep unconscious motives that drive your behaviors, like the fact that your relentless ambition is driven by the need to prove wrong your parents' assumption that you'd never amount to much. T hird are "personal spots"—things known only by you, like your tendency to get anxious in crowds or your contempt for your coworkers. And finally, there are "blind spots"—things known only by others, which can include such factors as your level of hostility and defensiveness, your attractiveness, and your intelligence.
The most interesting are the latter two—personal spots and blind spots—since they involve discrepancies between how we see ourselves and how others see us.
Why You're Less Transparent Than You Think
We're not entirely deluded about ourselves. We have pretty unrestricted access, for instance, to what we like and believe; if you think you're in favor of tighter regulation for car emissions or that Bon Iver is your favorite band right now, who am I to argue? Even if you don't know the mysterious unconscious motives underlying what you like and do, you're still the best source of information about your attitudes, beliefs, and preferences.
We often think others are aware of our anxiety or our darkest feelings, but research shows they're actually poor judges of our emotions, intentions, and thoughts. Thomas Gilovich, a psychologist at Cornell, has found that numerous obstacles and psychological biases stand in the way of knowing how you're seen by others. We overestimate the extent to which our internal states are detectable to others—a bias known as the "illusion of transparency." We also overestimate the extent to which our behavior and appearance are noticed and evaluated by others—a bias known as the "spotlight effect."
We're good at judging our own self-esteem, optimism and pessimism, and anything to do with how we feel. So for instance, others may think you're very calm when in fact you're so anxious in large groups that your palms sweat and your heart rate soars.
Personal spots exist because others know how you behave, but they don't know your intentions or feelings, explains Simine Vazire, director of the Personality and Self-Knowledge Lab at Washington University. "If you're quiet at a party, people don't know if it's because you're arrogant and you think you're better than everyone else or because you're shy and don't know how to talk to people," she says. "But you know, because you know your thoughts and feelings. So things like anxiety, optimism and pessimism, your tendency to daydream, and your general level of happiness—what's going on inside of you, rather than things you do—those are things other people have a hard time knowing."
You may read the full article at:
Gosling, S. (2009). MIXED SIGNALS.. (cover story). Psychology Today, 42(5), 62-71. Retrieved from Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition database.
I say to all my fellow graduate classmates, especially those students who are new to the program, I suggest brushing up on your organization skills. Depending on your specific type of learning style, it might be a good idea to set up some sort of chart or other categorizing system, for a better understanding of all the theories.
If your are knowledgeable in Microsoft Excel you could design an outline that includes: the theory, theorist name, type of theory, key words and concepts, assessments, age group, and other information you feel is important. Through construction of a chart, new information learned for old can new theories and simply be added. The finish product is a great tool for preparing for comps and gaining a better understanding of the theories and their functions.
Wednesday, 18 August 2010
Ashleigh Kerlin ALCA 9 Blog 1
Hello there, my name is Ashleigh Kerlin and I am a graduate student at Troy University. I am in my third semester and second year of the Community Counseling program. My journey through graduate school has been quite a crazy ride! I don’t think my first year, in the counseling program, would have been so implicitly successful without the help and direction of my extraordinary professors, fellow classmates, friends, and family. This journey continues to show me new insights on self-awareness and dealing with others.
Upon graduation I hope to obtain a position working with children, adolescents, and their families. I also intend to work towards obtaining my Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) certification. I believe in the discipline of counseling in that I am willing to be there for the individual and listen and help. I think the techniques and process that counseling offers will continue to grow and develop innovative strategies to accommodate every population.
I hope to utilize the ALCA blog to help inform students about the counseling program and offer a few tips on how to not freak out! If I hear of any useful therapeutic news I will blog about it. If I come across any useful books, comments, stories, thoughts, tools, workshops, web sites and so on, I share it. I will also keep you informed about what the ALCA has going on.
SEE YOU AT THE ETHICS WORKSHOP AT TROY UNIVERISY
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 10TH!!!
8:45 AM – 12 PM with DR. PAUL HARD
Posted by Ashleigh at 2:21 PM EDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Wednesday, 18 August 2010 2:38 PM EDT
Monday, 29 March 2010
Wrappin it up!
Wow! My time in Grad school is flying by. In about a month i'll be finishing up with my second semester. It's amazing how much i've learned just in this short amount of time. As usual, i've thoroughly enjoyed all of it although the work gets crazy at times! Currently i'm working on a research proposal and boy I cant wait to be done with it. I keep a positive mind though, i'll keep going for another month and i'll be done.
I'm looking forward to this Summer. I'm taking a break from school to soak up some sun and play with my kid. She just turned 13 and I'm still trying to figure out where the time has gone! I look forward to hangin out with her and my husband for a while. By the time I get back to school in the Fall, i'm sure I'll be refreshed and ready to go another round with Grad school.
I'm always thinking about the future. I really think that my decision to go to Graduate School will enable me to find a career that I really enjoy and will be able to make an impact in. I'm excited about it, and that keeps me going.
I'll be starting on my studying for finals soon. I'll let you all know how everything goes soon.
Monday, 1 February 2010
How Time Flies!
I am already into my second semester of Graduate school! I was so pleased to recieve my official letter of acceptance into the Counseling program. My first semester really gave me a lot of insight as to what was in store for me in Grad school. The workload is certainly challenging, but I really enjoy learning the material. I feel like i'm really getting to get to the "meat" of counseling and Psychology rather than just covering the basics. I am really looking forward to beginning my internship. Hands on experiences are always the best learning experiences for me and I feel like I'll really understand how to apply the concepts i'm learning once I begin interning.
One thing that makes the whole Grad school "journey" so much easier, is the stellar faculty that I get to work with. My instructors are so approachable and helpful, i appreciate the fact that they are so willing to share their knowledge with all of us in the program. Having them be there, willing to do whatever it takes to help us through, is something that i'm extremely thankful for!
I know that I still have a whole lot to learn about all of this Psychology "stuff", but i can't wait to learn it. It's so fascinating to study human behavior. I really feel that once I graduate, I'll be prepared to go out into the world and (hopefully) make it better! One person at a time :)
I have great hopes for this New Year! I'll keep you all posted on what happens as I progress through the program. Until then, I wish you peace and happiness!
Sunday, 15 November 2009
WOW! Time sure does fly, I'm already wrapping up my first semester of Graduate School!
I must say, Grad school sure does keep you busy! I've loved every minute of it though. I've really learned a great deal of information over these last coulple of months, my instructors are like great fountains of knowledge. I've examined human development from birth to death, studied the ethics and guidelines of the counseling process, and have even learned some of the fundamental basics of how to be an effective "helper". I particularly enjoyed the video tape process of "practice" counseling sessions; while they are nerve racking, they're an invaluble tool in assessing and critiquing your own counseling style. I could go on and on about everything I've learned in just one semester!
Now that I have almost finished with this first semester, i'm not nearly as nervous about what lies ahead. I think that most of my initial anxiety over Grad School was a fear of the unknown. Now that I have made some really neat new friends and have gotten to know all of the OUTSTANDING instructors, I feel excitement for what the future holds.
Phew am I ready for the holidays! While i have enjoyed Graduate school, it has certainly presented challenges and has kept me on my toes. I look forward to taking some time to enjoy my family and friends, eating LOTS of turkey and stuffing, and gearing up for my next semester. I wish everyone a happy, safe, and family filled holiday season
Wednesday, 26 August 2009
Sorry it's been a while, boy getting into grad school is a busy process! Orientation on the 10th was great. The information presented was very enlightening and useful. I would recommend that anyone entering grad school attend the orientation.
Having said that...I'm in! I have already started classes and i'm so very excited about it. I enjoy the conversations that we have in the classes. They feel more collaborative than "teacher squakin" to the students. We are encouraged to jump in there and offer up our opinions and knowledge. It makes me feel like part of a professional team rather than just another student. I'm feeling so excited about the future! While the work may be more challenging than I'm used to, I enjoy the material and am ready to really learn it. To anyone who is nervous about the idea of Graduate school, I say go for it! It's totally worth the hassle of getting into the program and once your in there is an intrinsic satisfaction of being successful and having a bright future in a field you love ahead of you.
Next week we are having interviews with the actual program we have applied for. I am going into the community counseling program so everyone keep your fingers crossed that I do well! I'll let you know how they went. Until then, keep up the good work!
Thursday, 30 July 2009
I am so excited! Orientation is coming up on August 10th and the anticipation of it is killing me! I can't wait to meet with my advisor and register for my classes. I have been revising my resume and creating my vita. I'm thinking that I will go by the career services office at my school to get further tips and pointers on how to make them stellar. I have a lot of competition out there, so i'm thinking that my best bet is to make sure that I have a resume that really stands out and catches some attention. Since this is the job of the career services office, I figure who better to go to for advising?
I cannot wait to get back to school and see all of my friends and learn all kinds of new "stuff". While i'm nervous about it, I also am confident that if other people can do it, then so can I! Here I come Grad school ;)
Wednesday, 22 July 2009
Tying up the loose ends
Hello again everyone! I hope this blog finds you all happy and well.
I have recieved my voucher for 50% off of the test taking fee! I have gone on to call the nearest testing center to schedule my GRE. I have found the GRE study book to be most helpful. The guide is very useful in that it provides a plethora of study sections, familiarizes you with the layout of the test, and offers up suggestions on test taking techniques and strategies. Moreover, I appreciate that scoring of the answers is also discussed. I would recommend to anyone having to take the GRE to get the book. Perhaps it would be wise to ask around to determine if anyone who has previously taken it still has their study materials. This could save you time and money.
I have recieved my registration information from Troy. I will be going August 10th for my orientation. Wish me luck! I'll let everyone know how it went.
Tuesday, 30 June 2009
Trials and Tribulations of getting into Graduate School
My name is Ginger Joiner and I am the new blogger for the ALCA chapter IX website. I am very excited to have this opportunity to blog about what's going on with ALCA, school issues, and other interesting topics! So, here we go...
First topic, taking the GRE. You may notice that my mood has been marked as rushed. This is because I am a procrastinator (admitting it is the first step...right?). I am hoping to enter Troy University's Community Counseling Graduate program this Fall. It is now June 30th and I have only just now made my arrangements to take the GRE. My advisor advised me to prepare to take it about a year ahead of time, obviously, I didn't listen. I discovered that I could obtain a voucher for 50% off of the $150 cost of the test. I went to my financial aid office to obtain the requested signatures and school seals. Thinking that I have been very productive, I called the GRE center to determine if everything I had was in order. I was promptly informed that the expiration date on the voucher was June 30th, the date was June 27th. I rushed to the post office and ended up paying an extra $6 to get it there on time. I got confirmation of it's delivery this morning, it was delivered yesterday at 5:46a.m. Thank the Lord!
The moral of this little story is this, DO NOT PROCRASTINATE when attempting to enter Grad school! This exponentially increases stress and anxiety. Now all I have to do is wait 4-6 weeks for processing...Jeez.
I'll let yall know when I hear something.
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