More Blind Spots
By Dr. Chaya S. Newman
I often wonder how well we know ourselves. Perhaps the best image is what we do when we are trying on clothes in a dressing room. In order to see how the garment fits, we have to stand in front of a three-way mirror. In the process, we keep moving so that we can see the full image. With patience and work, we can get a clearer picture.
This process is analogous to the way that we get to know ourselves. We think of ourselves in one way. Often, this view is tested when we interact with others. Sarah’s own story comes to mind to illustrate an enhanced way of learning about myself.
Raised as almost an only child, there was very little sharing that I had to do. I had my own room and my own bathroom. For some reason, I grew up with the feeling that I was a selfless person.
I was in for a BIG surprise when I got married. Little did I know that I wasn’t so selfless after all. Sharing was a new quality that I had to learn. Fortunately, I had a very supportive husband who helped me to learn this quality.
No one enjoys these types of surprises. Is there an alternative to the “rude awakening” that Sarah had as a new wife?
The old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” comes to mind. What if singles were to sit down with an instrument that would address a variety of qualities that encompass daily life? After completing such a form, what if they were to reflect on the results to see if there was any information that they didn’t know about themselves? Following this self-reflection, what if they were to share the results with a trusted friend who could provide additional feedback?
Therefore, to help you get a better idea of who you are, I designed a questionnaire that could provide a very detailed profile. Although lengthy, I suggest that you try to complete one or two sections at a time.
The key to this activity is complete and total honesty. Take your time to finish it and then let it sit for a while. When you return, take a look at it again from a fresh perspective. Allow yourself to find aspects of your personality that you hadn’t previously known.
To test your self-understanding, choose a trusted friend with whom you can gain additional feedback. Remember the goal: More detailed and honest self-knowledge. Feel free to share the results with me: firstname.lastname@example.org. Good luck!
Who am I?
To get a clear sense of who we are, circle the number that best represents the following abilities. On the scale, 1 is never; 2 is hardly ever; 3 is sometimes, 4 is often; and 5 is very often.
I can control my emotions.
I am a naturally calm person.
I consider myself a rational person.
I don’t get discouraged easily.
Things do not have to go as planned for me.
I work well under stress.
I try to understand the views of others.
I judge others favorably.
I look for the good qualities in others.
I don’t mind if others don’t agree with me.
I regard myself as being flexible.
I take responsibility for my actions.
I like to be spontaneous.
I take time to examine my shortcomings.
I reflect on my behavior and actions.
I am capable of admitting that I made an error.
I consider myself to be honest.
I don’t have to be the center of attention.
I believe that I am humble.
Little things don’t bother me.
I am an energetic person.
Relationships with Others
I have a number of close friends.
I feel capable of confiding in others.
I ask for help when I need to do so.
I have a good relationship with my family.
I set aside time to spend with my family.
I have no expectations of others.
I communicate effectively.
I can read non-verbal cues.
I do not impose on other people.
I know how to be a good listener.
I don’t have to have the last word.
I appreciate what others do for me.
I like being around other people.
I enjoy people of different nationalities.
I benefit from collaborating with others.
It is easy for me to share.
I am happy when my friends succeed.
I am not manipulated by other people.
Outlook on Life and Myself
I am intolerant of abuse.
I have a positive self-image.
I like the activities in which I am involved.
I feel that my life is satisfying.
I am able to handle conflict.
I am not deterred by life’s challenges.
I am comfortable with disorder.
I am not defined by my job or my education.
I look forward to new experiences.
I am open to learning new ideas and skills.
I am tolerant of diverse ideas.
I consider myself to be independent.
Personal Habits and Preferences
I function well in a noisy environment.
I take care of my appearance.
I take care of my health.
I have a spiritual advisor.
I set aside time for prayer.
I handle my finances effectively.
Disorder and disarray don’t bother me.
I have much to contribute to the world.
I know how to reward myself.
I push things off until the last minute.
Dating Practices and Beliefs
I believe that I will be a good spouse.
I enjoy the dating process.
I like to meet potential spouses.
I am respectful to the people I date.
I am actively involved in finding a mate.
I speak with a variety of matchmakers.
I am part of a singles group.
I look forward to being a parent.
I have few requirements for a spouse.
I believe that I will get married soon.
I am listed on at least one Internet dating site.
I can date people who don’t match perfectly.
I am patient if someone rejects a match idea.
My dating history has a regular pattern.
I work with a dating coach and/or mentor.
List the numbers of the statements where you circled either a 4 or 5. In which categories were these statements? Were you aware of this information before this workshop?
List the numbers of the statements where you circled either a 1 or 2. In which categories were these statements? Were you aware of this information before this workshop?
Write additional comments or notes that could be helpful in the future:
About Dr. Chaya Newman:
Born and bred in America, Chaya Newman is a teacher educator who lives with her family in Israel. She works in several post-high school settings teaching English as a Second Language, educational research, and graduate education courses.
She has a passion for understanding the reasons that motivate people to act and think the way they do. She also has applied the one of the main tenets of her dissertation, individual dreams and goals, to her work as a matchmaker on SYAS.
She began her work with singles almost eleven years ago, preferring to work with those over 25. She encourages them to use her as a coach and share any challenges that may arise in their search for their bashert.
Chaya can be contacted at email@example.com; you should put "SYAS Column" as the subject of the email.