HR & Staffing

Accurate Self-Assessment: What Are You Capable Of?

Ushma Dhanak
Written by Ushma Dhanak

Do you sometimes feel that you’re in out of your depth and find yourself in stressful situations?

Do you feel frustrated and start to blame others?

Do you sometimes have to make up stories to cover your weaknesses or errors?

If so, this article will help you understand why that is – and, more importantly, how you can start to feel better about yourself.

Becoming more aware of your emotions, of how you manage these emotions, and how you respond to various situations is one of the ‘gateways’ that leads to more positive outcomes.

Greater awareness also leads to more accurate self-assessment. This inner awareness of your own strengths and limitations can help you exert more control and work towards more of the positive situations in your life and fewer of the negative ones.

What are the signs of accurate self-assessment?

Emotionally intelligent people have the confidence of knowing precisely what they’re capable of. They fully understand their strengths and weak points.

This does not mean that they always stay in their comfort zone and fear outside influence or change; they are comfortable with new opportunities, but they won’t bite off more than they can chew. Emotionally intelligent people will actively place themselves in situations where they can bring benefit for themselves and others.

They are also keen to learn from their experiences and invite honest feedback, perspectives from others so that they can develop their weaknesses and work on improving their all-round talents and abilities. They believe in consistent self-development.

How do you recognise such people in day-today life?

Following are some characteristics to look out for:

  • Frequently take courses and look for opportunities to learn
  • Embrace opportunities to grow their knowledge
  • Often read about self-development
  • Request help from those they can learn from – mentors, leaders, managers, colleagues
  • Seek out opportunities to collaborate and exchange views
  • Realistic about their goals and modest about their achievements
  • Take responsibility for mistakes
  • Can laugh at themselves when they mess up
  • Keep things in perspective and do not get stressed in difficult situations

If you are not very proficient at self-assessment, you are likely to exhibit some of the following characteristics:

  • Go to great lengths to prove that you’re right
  • Take ‘failure’ or mistakes seriously
  • Rarely ask for assistance from others
  • Prefer competition to collaboration
  • May be seen as ‘egotistical’ or a ‘show off’
  • Set overly optimistic personal goals and expect too much from others
  • Micromanage others
  • Blame others when things go wrong
  • Take criticism badly and avoid getting feedback

How to assess yourself more accurately

If you aspire to achieving more of the positive qualities that come with the ability to accurately self-assess, here are a few ideas to try:

  • Meditate – give yourself time to learn mindfulness techniques that will help you step back from the clutter and pace of modern life and start to gain more clarity on who you are.
  • Self-reflect more – start to consider your life and your own personal qualities more; think about what you’re good at and what can be improved. Revisit situations where you have become upset, frustrated, or stressed and try to learn why they happened.
  • Make lists – write down all your skills and talents; then, separately note down what you would like to improve.
  • Take a breath –when you feel negative emotions take over, learn to take a breath before repeating negative patterns of behaviour.
  • Take psychometric tests – tests like Myers-Briggs and Predictive Index may provide valuable insight and help you consider your personal qualities in more detail.
  • Seek out honest feedback – compare how you see yourself with how trusted friends see you.

Sit down with them and compare notes; you can then start assessing if your own view of yourself is similar to how other see you. This may be quite challenging but it will benefit you in the long run.

It’s all connected!

Of course, accurate self-assessment does not stand alone, it is closely connected with the other aspects of emotional intelligence.

You are unlikely to work on becoming better at self-assessment alone; it will dovetail with working on greater emotional awareness and self-confidence.

Remember: self-reflection is a great starting point as you look to become more emotionally intelligent.

“The opinions expressed by BizWitty Contributors are their own, not those of BizCover and should not be relied upon in place of appropriate professional advice. Please read our full disclaimer."

About the author

Ushma Dhanak

Ushma Dhanak

After starting her career as a lawyer, Ush moved to Sydney from London 13 years ago. After working as an advocate and investigator for the Government, Ush began her career in HR, and holds qualifications in mediation and executive coaching. After 8 years into her HR career, Ush had a passion to start her own outsourced HR business. During the initial set up of the business, she came across Emotional Intelligence as she knew that working on her resilience and personal power was going to be the key to success. Ush began to realise that learning and practicing Emotional Intelligence really was the X-Factor and businesses needed to start looking into EQ as much as they did IQ. Ush has worked with the Australian Federal Police, White Ribbon, and also has clients in Shanghai such as Freudenberg. Ush works with businesses and individuals to increase their Emotional Intelligence, and covers areas such as innovation, creativity, empathy and resilience. Ush is now an international coach, trainer and speaker on Emotional Intelligence, and a Senior Associate for People Builders.