Self-disclosure is a form of communication in which individuals reveal their concealed selves to others, as described by Matthew McKay, Ph.D., Martha Davis, Ph.D., and Patrick Fanning. It encompasses four elements: Open Self, Blind Self, Hidden Self, and Unknown Self. By engaging in self-disclosure, people can expose their hidden selves and impart previously undisclosed information to others.
Sharing personal information can create stronger connections and foster understanding of one’s behavior. This enables others to empathize without judgment, while also improving communication by enhancing the comprehension of messages and ideas.
At the beginning of new relationships, there is usually an uptick in self-disclosure. As these relationships progress, individuals tend to engage in more intimate and profound self-disclosure. Studies indicate that women often employ self-disclosure to bolster their relationships and improve communication with others. According to Randy Siegel, divulging personal information can enable us to express our genuine selves and forge genuine connections.
Self disclosure can enhance an individual’s self-esteem, facilitating their ability to cope with society and their overall coping skills. By promoting disclosure, self disclosure also enables individuals to establish meaningful and intimate relationships within the community.
According to Randy Siegel’s article, self-disclosure offers several advantages. As authors McKay, Davis, and Fanning explain, these benefits encompass enhanced self-awareness, stronger interpersonal connections, improved communication skills, and the promotion of additional disclosure. Sharing specific personal information often results in a positive shift in how others perceive individuals and their curiosity to learn more.