In 1955 Psychologists Joseph Luft and Harrington Ingham created The Johari window. This window is made up of 4 quadrants and is designed to help people understand themselves and others better. You can find the image here: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=the+johari+window&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwify8Gmr-zjAhUIO8AKHcC9Bc8Q_AUIESgB&biw=1366&bih=622#imgrc=G9uayAdAB0SAFM:&spf=1565030091116
The Johari window suggests that there are parts of ourselves that we do not know about but others do. That some areas are hidden. The parts only we know and no one else does, not even our nearest and dearest. It also suggests that there are parts of ourselves not yet discovered by anyone and of course the 4th quadrant is what you and others already know about you.
You may question why it would benefit you to know this? Well the window was created to enable us to understand ourselves better and practice reflection and self-awareness. This therefore improves relationships with ourselves and others.
This is certainly true for me.
The parts of ourselves that we know but never share can often be covered in shame and fear. The mere fact that these things are “secret” breeds the emotion of shame and you are most likely to tell these to a counsellor/therapist or stranger through fear of being judged or rejected by your friends or family.
Even though we know that sharing this information with our loved ones (specifically those who have earned the right to hear it and are your No.1’s) will improve intimacy and deepen relationships, we are still petrified to share it as we believe the opposite will happen.
Firstly, if any of this happened, then you are telling the wrong person. I have a best friend whom I can tell anything, and she knows every inch of the “panes” in my window. When I speak up and tell her something, I feel like I am out on a ledge for the whole world to see and it feels terrifying, but within a matter of minutes she is out there with me saying “me too!”
I am not suggesting you start spilling your private matters for the sake of it, but ask yourself if there is something you need to get off your chest? Is holding this in affecting your well being? Is it holding you back from living at your full potential?
This doesn’t have to be super serious stuff, although for some it will be, but this can be anything that you know about yourself but haven’t said out loud.
Rumi says “ The wound is where the light enters” which refers to looking into your pain, addressing it and accepting it is the way to happiness and fulfilment.
So take inventory and see what you can uncover. Really understanding ourselves and thinking about the things we store up can be painful which is why it stays in the hidden or blind parts of our mind, but addressing it will bring you relief, help you move forward and help you grow.