Social Sciences


The self – knowledge, as evidenced by the name, is to know ourselves, but from the mental point of view. It means recognizing those psychological processes, tastes and preferences of our being.

By knowing ourselves we can know our emotions, personality traits and know how we would respond to a certain stimulus.

The psychologists Duval and Wicklund were the first to coin that term in their research. They developed the following theory:

“When we focus on ourselves, we evaluate and compare our present behavior with our internal standards and values. We become self-aware as objective evaluators of ourselves.

With the above, these experts wanted to establish the relationship between self-knowledge and self-control.

The importance of self-knowledge

Although it seems that “listening” to ourselves to know our mind is simple, the truth is that it is not. That is why psychology tries to help us in the process of breaking down the barriers that prevent us from knowing ourselves:

  • Not paying attention to signs.
  • Irrational ideas.
  • Stages of denial.
  • Unsafety
  • Low self-esteem.

Each of the above prevents us from knowing for sure what our true abilities are, although they are also part of who we are in the “now”.

If we have bad habits that we should eliminate, self-knowledge would help us, first to recognize that we have them, then to use our own tools to eradicate those negative habits.

On the other hand, it is necessary to know “what we are made of” to improve our role in society and relationships with family, friends and partner. Recognizing defects, using virtues for good, could be decisive in maintaining interpersonal relationships.

Acknowledging the negative side helps us accept criticism. Recognizing the virtues and emotions motivates us to grow in many ways.

What is Mindfulness?

It is a technique that, if applied, causes people to focus on their own experiences to highlight their thoughts, emotions and reactions, only to know what pattern they follow, and not to judge themselves or repress themselves. In fact, the premise of mindfulness is “mindfulness and observation without judgment . ” And it is that, when we do an introspection, traits appear that we do not want to have, so that first irrational idea that there is nothing wrong with us is demolished.

Applying mindfulness means meeting the following stages:

  1. Create a journal to record experiences.
  2. Ask third parties for opinions about ourselves.
  3. Record with date and time the emotions that you present during the day.
  4. Analyze your reactions to those emotions.

Examples of self-knowledge

  • Determine our wishes, be they small, big; short or long term.
  • Recognize our impulses.
  • Establish possible dreams.
  • Know what our passions are.
  • Discover fears or accept those that we already knew we had.
  • Recognize our common emotions.
  • Know about our feelings.
  • Pay attention to our thoughts.
  • Know what are the weaknesses and strengths of our personality.
  • Establish how vulnerable we are.
  • Know if we have a good or bad behavior in the face of most stimuli.

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