Research has highlighted that there are many blind spots in self-knowledge and these blind spots can have fairly negative consequences. The construct of mindfulness, defined as paying attention to one’s current experience in a nonevaluative way, may serve as a path to self-knowledge. Mindfulness addresses barriers to self-knowledge: informational barriers (i.e., the quantity and quality of information people have about themselves) and motivational barriers (i.e., ego-protective motives that affect how people process information about themselves). Non-judgmental observation of one’s thoughts, feelings, and behavior reduce emotional reactivity — such as feelings of inadequacy or low self-esteem — that typically interferes with people seeing the truth about themselves.
Researchers have found that focused, nonjudgmental attention on current experiences, thoughts, and behaviors can increase awareness and self-knowledge, and reduce negative emotional reactivity. Previous research has also shown that mindfulness training is associated with positive mood and greater physical awareness. (Carlson, E. (2013). Overcoming the barriers to self-knowledge: Mindfulness as a path to seeing yourself as you really are. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 8(2), 173-186.)