Paper XVIII: Soft Skills Development
B.Ed.: Sem. IV Sub. Code: BCSD
Unit II : Intrapersonal Skills
Self-awareness – Joe Harry, SWOT analysis, self-confidence – self-esteem: Definition, ways of improving, self-talk – Attitude: Meaning, features, formation, change, positive attitude, power of the attitude, developing positive attitude, obstacles – Values: Meaning, importance, formation, types, personal, cultural and social.
Objectives: The prospective teacher at the end of the unit understands the concept of self-awareness, attitude, and values; applies the theories of Jo-Harry Window and SWOT analysis on him/herself; develops positive attitude in oneself.
Sec 01: Self- Awareness
What is Self-Awareness?
• It is the ability to know one’s strengths, weaknesses, objectively and one’s likes, dislikes, attitudes correctly. That means knowing oneself as he or she is.
• Key areas for self-awareness include our personality traits, personal values, habits, emotions, and the psychological needs that drive our behaviours.
• Personality: Understanding of our personalities can help us find situations in which we will thrive and avoid situations where we will experience too much of stress. For example, an introvert person should not choose a sales man position.
• Values: knowing our interest for specific values, will help us accomplish what we consider most important. For example, on “things to do “list, we need to focus our attention.
• Habits: Our habits are the behaviours that we repeat routinely and often automatically. Some habits will help us interact effectively and mange others while some may decrease our effectiveness.
• Needs: there are needs that drive our behaviours such as need for self-esteem, affection, belongingness, achievement, self-actualization and power and control we should know which type of needs exert the strongest influence on our behaviours. For example, need / thirst for status among the people may change our behaviour.
• Emotions: understanding our own feelings, what causes them, and how they impact your thoughts and actions is emotional intelligence.
• How self-awareness makes you more effective? For Skill development, developing intuitive decision-making skills, to reduce stress, motivation, to enhance leadership.
Techniques for becoming aware of Self
Psychologists Joseph Luft (1916–2014) and Harrington Ingham (1916–1995) jointly formed a theory, and it was named as Jo-Hari Window, which helps people better understand their relationship with themselves and others. They visualized the information about self to be coming under four areas, that is four parts of a window and hence it was titled as Johari Window Theory.
SWOT analysis (or SWOT matrix) is an acronym for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats and is a structured planning method that evaluates those four elements of an organization, project or business venture. A SWOT analysis can be carried out for a company, product, place, industry, or person. It involves specifying the objectives of the business venture or project and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieve that objective. Some authors credit SWOT to Albert Humphrey, who led a convention at the Stanford Research Institute (now SRI International) in the 1960s and 1970s using data from Fortune 500 companies. However, Humphrey himself did not claim the creation of SWOT, and the origins remain obscure. The degree to which the internal environment of the firm matches with the external environment is expressed by the concept of strategic fit.
• Strengths: characteristics of the business or project that give it an advantage over others
• Weaknesses: characteristics of the business that place the business or project at a disadvantage relative to others
• Opportunities: elements in the environment that the business or project could exploit to its advantage
• Threats: elements in the environment that could cause trouble for the business or project
Identification of SWOTs is important because they can inform later steps in planning to achieve the objective. First, decision-makers should consider whether the objective is attainable, given the SWOTs. If the objective is not attainable, they must select a different objective and repeat the process.
Users of SWOT analysis must ask and answer questions that generate meaningful information for each category (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) to make the analysis useful and find their competitive advantage.
SWOT analysis groups key pieces of information into two main categories:
1. Internal factors – the strengths and weaknesses internal to the organization
2. External factors – the opportunities and threats presented by the environment external to the organization
Analysis may view the internal factors as strengths or as weaknesses depending upon their effect on the organization’s objectives. What may represent strengths with respect to one objective may be weaknesses (distractions, competition) for another objective. The factors may include all of the 4Ps as well as personnel, finance, manufacturing capabilities, and so on.
The external factors may include macroeconomic matters, technological change, legislation, and sociocultural changes, as well as changes in the marketplace or in competitive position. The results are often presented in the form of a matrix.
Sec 02: SELF CONFIDENCE
Self-confidence is the generous expression of one’s assessment of one’s own eligibility and capabilities. It is the conviction about one’s eligibilities; it is based on theory and experience. Self-confidence is the luster is the shining quality of action.
- If you believe in 30 million Gods and if you do not believe in yourself, how will iy benefit you? – Swami Vivekananda.
- Self-confidence is awareness of one’s eligibilities
- SC is the strength of life; those who haven’t nurtured it haven’t reached maturity – Kiran Bedi.
- What lies behind us and what lies before us is small matter compared to what lies within us – Ralph W Emerson.
- When fear knocks at your door, send your self-belief to chase it away – Anonymous.
- Blessing, Confidence and hope are the three things required for success in life – Abdul Kalam.
- Imprudent remarks by parents, teachers, elders without appreciation
- Unhealthy comparisons with other students, rank consciousness
- Spoon feeding
- Destructive thoughts
- Thoughts about failure
To Boost your Self Confidence
- Why not I? I am far better,
- I can do it: Buddha in Siddhartha; Gandhi in Mohandas; African daddy in Nelson Mandela
- Think of success: positive mind, outlook, thoughts,
- Forget failures, remove destructive thoughts, not enslaved by problems
- Dream big
- inflate the confidence, bank upon your talents.
- Take a lead in any activity; initiate new thinking
- Practice conversation looking at the eyes and face
- Express your opinions and speak in deep loud voice
- Walk at least 25% faster than now and be vibrant
- Walk with chest forward, head held high
- Smile always; combine politeness with clear communication
- Tell the truth and show others that they can depend on you
- Have your principles and right ethical practices
Sec 03: Self Esteem
The word ‘esteem’ means ‘to have a high regard for, value something or someone; thinking and believing that something or someone is of great value’. Self-esteem is the way you look at, feel, regard and value yourself. It is a positive regard or negative orientation towards oneself; an overall evaluation of one’s worth or value. Self-esteem is a personal evaluation. According to Cooper Smith, “it is a personal judgement of worthiness that is expressed in the attitudes that the individual hold himself”. Self-esteem is the sum total of self-confidence and self-respect.
Self-esteem is affected by influences, ranging from formation of childhood of our idea of self. When the self-esteem is high, we are confident; we feel free to be ourselves and to express ourselves whereas when it is low, we attempt to hide ourselves. People of high esteem are less dependent upon the good opinion of others. People of low self-esteem are easily influenced and more emotional problems.
Tips for improving Self-esteem / Self-worth:
- Be self-conscious
- Be your self; don’t wear mask; accept your potentials and weaknesses.
- Go with your strength whenever you do as work.
- Surprise the people with your new words and actions.
- Choose friends who give you push, lift and encouragement.
- Learn from mistakes.
- Usae oopportunities for counselling.
- Enjoy yourself; have a free social relationship with others.
- Let other people love you and you love them.
- Recognize God’s work in you; you are unique in the eyes of God.
Psychologists of the opinions that we tend to follow our mind and become what we think; hence if our thoughts are positive, then we will have unique impact on our lives. Most of the so-called losers and constant failures are the people who have negative self-talk. They trend to constantly tell themselves that they are failures; they are not capable; they are irrelevant; they cannot do etc. Rather they should begin to say, that they are winners, they are capable, they are relevant, they can do it etc. Here the person should say in singular as I can…, I am…, etc. In the same way, the person should accept the positive stroke that comes from his own friends, families, relatives etc. Therefore, self-talk means to have a talk to oneself in a positive manner so that the person is encouraged or made feel the worth of him.
Sec: 04: Attitude
Attitude: Meaning, features, formation, change, positive attitude, power of attitude, developing attitude and obstacles.
“The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimists stares at the thorns, oblivious (unmindful) of the rose”, observed Kahlil Gibran, the Persian poet. Our lives are brightened or delighted enriched by the kind of attitudes we bestow toward our fellow human beings and creatures.
The English dictionary says that the word attitude is “a feeling or opinion about something or someone, or a way of behaving that is caused by this” (https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/attitude).
The term attitude is defined by Freeman as “a dispositional readiness to certain situations, persons, objects or ideas in a consistent manner, which has been learned and has become one’s typical mode of response” (Dandapani, 2005, p.475).
Attitude is the way you look at life. It is the way you choose to see and respond to events, situations, people, and yourself. Your attitude is not something that happens to you. You choose your attitude. Your attitude is created by your thoughts, and you choose your thoughts. You are the architect of your frame of mind. You decide how you will perceive and process the events of life and work. You make the decision if your mindset is positive or negative. If you want to feel better you have to think better. In order to be positive in the way you feel, it is necessary to be disciplined in the way you think. (Brian kight, 2017). (https://www.focus3.com/blog/bid/91377/the-power-of-attitude-part-1).
- Attitudes are not inborn traits but could be acquired through social interaction
- Attitudes are not observable but inferred from overt behaviour. Behaviour may not always provide a reliable index of attitude.
- Opinions are expressions of one’s attitudes. Sometimes words and actions may not go together which is hypocrisy.
- There may be dichotomy between public and private attitudes.
- Attitude has three components: cognition, feeling and action.
- Attitudes vary in their direction, may be positive or negative and its intensity or gravity.
- Developing and sustaining a positive attitude is not merely a quick-fix motivational technique. It is a disciplined skill that must be practiced and learned.
- Attitude has three components: affective which is connected with emotions; when someone sees or hears about snake, she or he has anxiety and fear. Behavioural which means the overt actions of the person when he or she sees the snake; he or she runs away or clings on to someone. Lastly the cognitive which means trying to analyse the object and making a decision or judgement.
Power of Attitude
Your Attitude determines your Altitude in your Life.
For better or worse, your attitude affects your performance. Your attitude has a profound impact on the way you lead people. It affects the way you sell and the way you serve customers. Your attitude has a direct impact on how you communicate and collaborate with others, how you contribute to the culture of your work environment, and how you perform your daily tasks and responsibilities. Ultimately, your attitude shapes your success and your happiness. Other things being equal, the person with the best attitude will win. Other things not being equal, the person with the best attitude usually wins. Unfortunately, many people cling to beliefs and attitudes that restrict rather than empower their performance. (Brian Kight, 2017)
Formation/Sources of Attitudes:
- They’re formed over time as we are exposed to stimuli and make an evaluation.
- Direct Personal Experience: A person’s direct experience with person or any object determines his or her attitude towards it. …
- Family and Peer Groups
- Economic Status and Occupations
- Mass Communications:
Change of Attitude
Attitude may be changed only through proper grasping and evaluating an event or object and constructing a right knowledgeabout it. There must be some turning points which would put you to evaluate the past.
A negative attitude is the result of negative thinking. It is a lack of mental discipline. It focuses on the problem and stops looking for solutions or opportunities. A negative attitude can only survive on a steady diet of negative thinking and negative self-talk. A negative attitude is habit-forming, and it has an impact on you and the people around you. A negative attitude affects you physically. A person with a negative attitude will almost always lose to a person with a positive attitude. Sadly, many people with a negative attitude are stuck in a doom loop because they have a negative attitude about improving their attitude. This is not a good place to be!(Brian Kight, 2017). Anger, doubt, frustration bare some of the effects of negative attitude.
A positive attitude is the result of a disciplined and deliberate way of seeing, thinking, and responding to life. It is a mental discipline. It is intentional. It is mental toughness. A positive attitude is not naïve, and it does not sugarcoat problems. Rather, it sees and acknowledges problems and then focuses on finding solutions and opportunities. It looks for the opportunity within the problem. A positive attitude is habit-forming, and it has an impact on you and people around you. A positive attitude affects you physically. A person with a positive attitude will almost always outperform a person with a negative attitude.(Brian Kight, 2017). Happiness, sincereity, confidence and determination are a few qualities of positive attitude.
Developing Positive Attitude
- Use positive words to describe anything
- Listen to others with positive mind
- Look at the challenges with solutions; there is always solution for everything
- Try to learn something from out of every event.
- Do not give more weightage to other’s complaints.
- Have a journal of gratitude.
- Learn from the leaders of the past.
- Relax and breathe out.
Obstacles for positive Attitude
- Influence of negative people
- Laziness in analyzing the life or events.
- More expectations and avoiding the challenges
- Poor reading of self-image
.Sec 05: Values: The basis of Soft skills
How do we define Values?
- They are the broad preferences/ priorities regarding appropriate courses of action or outcomes
- They are the principles one stands for; emphasis on one choice of thought
- They are the causes one dedicates himself or herself
- It is a line of living or thought based on which my behaviors are exhibited
- It is an outcome of my experiences and followed by attitude formation which stands for particular values.
- They are the traits or qualities that are considered worthwhile
- It is a part of the personality;
- It enables the person to differentiate the good from bad.
- It is a strong belief that guides a person in the situation of difficulties.
Importance of Values
- Life Values are inherent in educational behaviour.
- Education is a lifelong process and values are the outcome of the process.
- Values are ideals or thoughts which guide a person
- Values provide a meaning to human life.
Sources of Values: Family, society, religion, education, politics, economy and personal factors.
Formation of Values
- Values are determined on the principles of happiness or bliss
- The basis of values is interest
- Values are determined by utility and experiences
- The qualities of objectivity and subjectivity influence the values
- The tradition or background impacts the thinking and values.
Characteristics of values
- Values are objective
- Values are subjective
- Values have expression as well as experience
- Values have difference in emotion and outcome
- Values productivity and creativity
- Values have norms
- The scope of value is wide
Functions of Values
- Provides goals or ends for the members to aim for.
- Provide for stabilities and uniformities in group interaction; hence create sense of belongingness among people who shared commonly.
- Bring legitimacy to the rules that govern specific activities.
- Help to bring about some kind ‘of adjustment between different sets of rules.
- differentiate between right and wrong and what is desirable and undesirable
Types of Values
Personal: It is a special trait within a person which represents beliefs and purpose; they stand for what is good and bad. Values endorsed by an individual; Reminds of one’s conviction and ideal-goal. The values are formed during three periods: infant period from birth to 7 years; modeling period from 8-13 years; socialization period 13-21 years.
These are the values which are related with the development of human personality or individual norms of recognition and protection of the human personality such as honesty, loyalty, veracity and honor.
- The quality (positive or negative) that renders something desirable or valuable is social value; Principles, standards or qualities considered worthwhile or desirable by the person who holds them.
- Those qualities of behavior, thought, and character that society regards as being intrinsically good, having desirable results, and worthy of emulation by others.
- Values are our subjective reactions to the world around us. They guide and mold our options and behavior. Values have three important characteristics: Developed early in life and are very resistant to change. Define what is right and what is wrong; Cannot be proved correct or incorrect, valid.
Basics of Social Values: Participation in decision-making process, Protection of privacy and freedom of information, Equality and integration, Protection of the environment, Protection of the unborn.
Cultural Values: Cultural values are the core principles and ideals upon which an entire community exists. This is made up of several parts: customs, which are traditions (National Anthem and holidays) and rituals; values, which are beliefs (connected with spirituality and life); and culture, which is all of a group’s guiding values (hospitality). For example, every culture has beliefs about health, disease, treatment, and health care providers. People from the many immigrant cultures, as well as American Indians, bring their beliefs, and the practices that accompany them, into the health care system.
For example, American sociologist Robert K. Merton suggested that the most important values in American society are wealth, success, power, and prestige, but that everyone does not have an equal opportunity to attain these values. Functional sociologist Talcott Parsons noted that Americans share the common value of the “American work ethic,” which encourages hard work. Other sociologists have proposed a common core of American values, including accomplishment, material success, problem-solving, reliance on science and technology, democracy, patriotism, charity, freedom, equality and justice, individualism, responsibility, and accountability (www.cliffnotes.com).