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Measuring the Effects of Self-Awareness: Construction of the Self-Awareness Outcomes Questionnaire

Sutton, AM (2016) Measuring the Effects of Self-Awareness: Construction of the Self-Awareness Outcomes Questionnaire. Europe's Journal of Psychology, 12 (4). pp. 645-658. ISSN 1841-0413

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Abstract

Dispositional self-awareness is conceptualized in several different ways, including insight, reflection, rumination and mindfulness, with the latter in particular attracting extensive attention in recent research. While self-awareness is generally associated with positive psychological well-being, these different conceptualizations are also each associated with a range of unique outcomes. This two part, mixed methods study aimed to advance understanding of dispositional self-awareness by developing a questionnaire to measure its outcomes. In Study 1, expert focus groups categorized and extended an initial pool of potential items from previous research. In Study 2, these items were reduced to a 38 item self-report questionnaire with four factors representing three beneficial outcomes (reflective self-development, acceptance and proactivity) and one negative outcome (costs). Regression of these outcomes against self-awareness measures revealed that self-reflection and insight predicted beneficial outcomes, rumination predicted reduced benefits and increased costs, and mindfulness predicted both increased proactivity and costs. These studies help to refine the self-awareness concept by identifying the unique outcomes associated with the concepts of self-reflection, insight, reflection, rumination and mindfulness. It can be used in future studies to evaluate and develop awareness-raising techniques to maximize self-awareness benefits while minimizing related costs.

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