The Importance of Self-Monitoring for Better Behaviour

Have you ever found yourself in a tough situation, feeling angry, stressed or upset, but needed to turn on the charm and be sociable? This requires a high level of behavioural 'self-monitoring'. The concept of self-monitoring was introduced by psychologist Mark Snyder in the 1970s, and it refers to the way we regulate our behaviours in response to our surroundings or social circles. People with high self-monitoring skills are able to adapt their behaviours depending on the situation, while those with low self-monitoring skills tend to act more on their internal thoughts and feelings.

Self-monitoring can be a useful tool in various situations, but it can also be applied in extreme cases, such as guarding our behaviours around a loved one or a colleague to avoid upsetting them or saying the wrong thing. However, checking our own behaviours can be a complex task, and without fully understanding why we do the things we do, it's hard to know whether we should self-monitor more or less.

That said, being aware of our emotions and needs and knowing whether to act on them or not is always a good thing. Whether it's navigating a work event or dealing with daily life, self-monitoring can help us be better at managing our behaviours. Here are some tips to help you check your own behaviour:

  1. Identify any conflicts or tension with others or yourself, and think about your part in it.
  2. Acknowledge any behaviours that might be an annoyance to others, and think about ways to minimize them.
  3. Consider whether any of your stress-relieving behaviours are constructive, or if it would be better to face the stress head-on.
  4. Reflect on any tasks or goals you have been putting off, and identify any internal conflicts that may be holding you back.

By practicing self-monitoring, we can become better at regulating our behaviours and making decisions that benefit ourselves and those around us.

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