Self-Knowledge = Better Relationships

WRITTEN May 18, 2015 Author: Rich Atkins

Do you remember the age-old line, “charity begins at home”?

It’s a best-practice reminder to help yourself before helping those around you. You’ll be much more useful to others, once you’re OK, right?

Address your needs first, so you can be of maximum use to others when needed. Even the FAA’s Passenger Safety Information Briefing always has people take care of their own needs first (like putting on oxygen masks, if needed), before helping those who need assistance.

This idea of Know Yourself First is very useful in gaining better understanding of diversity. When you know about yourself, your likes/dislikes, and even mental “blind spots,” you will be better able to navigate in relationships with others—especially those who are different from you.

Without much introspection, people can carry negative assumptions and wrong beliefs around with them. If they (or you) are doing this, it only seems logical that they (or you) would fear other people; perhaps even hate them.

Here is the starting point for gaining greater understanding of diversity: when you learn more about yourself, you’re in a better position to learn about others.

Are you included in any of these Federally-protected classes?

Diversity ClassThis information is from the Improving Communications Diversity – Building a Thriving Business Environment class.If you’re looking for ways to improve your communication skills, Check out our upcoming Public Classes.

  • Race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • National origin
  • Age
  • Sex
  • Pregnancy
  • Citizenship
  • Familial status
  • Disability
  • Veteran
  • Genetic information 

To know more about yourself and your relationship with diversity, ask yourself:


  1. What do you value most about your group/class?
  2. What do you wish others understood or knew about your group/class?
  3. What do you think that others think about your group/class?
  4. What are the challenges you face due to your group/class?
  5. What can you do at work to increase mutual group/class understanding?


Other Resources:

Why Knowing Yourself is Everything and How to Do It

To Know Your Customer, Know Yourself – How Diverse Management Can Save Your Brand

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