Understand Yourself: Overview
You might be tempted to imagine that the problems you experience lie outside of you. Yet the reason they are your problems is that somehow you have a role in them, whether you are reacting to someone or something, allowing them to get in your way or actually contributing to or perpetuating them. Sometimes you unknowingly bait a dilemma with your thoughts, feelings, and reactions. Understanding yourself first is part of what differentiates interpersonal and personal problem-solving from technical problem-solving. An essential part of assessing a problem is identifying how your thinking and feeling styles and your unique preferences influence your part in the situation.
Coping is any effort you make to alleviate stress, control your environment, or overcome something you find threatening. Self- efficacy is your belief about your ability to perform a particular behavior successfully; it is a type of self-confidence. Your patterns of dealing with problems and your confidence in how you manage them contribute to the magnitude of a problem.
Your thinking habits affect how you feel and how you respond to different situations. Thinking refers to your internal dialogue about anything that comes up in your moment-to-moment, day-to-day life. Unless you stop yourself, it’s easy to get caught up in debilitating patterns of thinking.
A mentor can help support you in your academic, professional, and personal development. Mentors often provide more emotional support and individualized attention than advisors. You can learn to understand what you need specifically and how you can find that support.
The way you think other people perceive you as a women or member of a minority group can cause anxiety and influence your actual performance in graduate school. If your gender, race, or ethnicity is underrepresented in your program, you might experience stereotype threat.
An Arizona State University project, supported by the National Science Foundation under grants 0634519 and 0910384
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views
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