What is self-awareness and why you need it

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If I asked you right now who you are, what would you say? Would you say that you are a business owner or a doctor or perhaps a teacher? Husband or wife? A law student?

We usually define ourselves according to our position in the family or in the society. But the question, “who are you?” is much deeper because you are not only a husband or a wife and not only a student or a teacher. Your profession and your family position don’t define your true being.

So who are you? What do you value? What do you believe in? Why do you behave the way you do? What are your needs and dreams? What thoughts do put in your mind on a daily basis? Empowering or disempowering ones? We rarely contemplate the deeper answer to the “Who am I?” question. We rarely take the time to connect to our inner self and actually discover these answers.

Challenge for you

Try describing yourself to another person without mentioning the context of your profession, studies or your family. Just focus on your inner self and see what comes to the surface. Concentrate only on yourself, what you feel and what you want. See what words come to your mind. It is a simple exercise that will give you more insight into your own being.

Self-awareness is about really getting to know yourself. It is about understanding what is happening in your mind and in your body. Why you behave the way you do. Why some things trigger you the way they do. What are your habits? What are your thought patterns? Which ones are useful and which ones are putting the seeds of self-doubt into your mind? What are your strengths and what are your weaknesses?

Is self-awareness important?

Self-awareness is extremely important because it gives you better understanding of who you are and what you need and want. It makes you also aware of your strengths and your weaknesses. Only when you know what you are good at, you can focus on these things even more in order to accelerate your growth and your success in various areas of your life. Knowing your weaknesses is also extremely useful as you will be more aware of the areas in which you can still learn and grow. The more you know yourself, the more power you have over your mind, your skills and your behaviours. This knowledge of yourself will help you immensely to create the life you want. Self-awareness is the first step on this journey of conscious creation.

How can you become more self-aware

  1. Meditation. Meditation is about becoming aware of the present moment and of yourself in the present moment. Start by focusing on your breath and notice how your body aligns with this natural flow of every inhale and every exhale. It will calm you down and bring your mind to more stillness. Remember though, that meditation doesn’t have to be practised in any formal way. You might find the same stillness and peace when you go for a walk and perhaps during doing the dishes or working in the garden. Feel free to explore different ways of introducing more stillness and connection with your inner self and find out what suits you best.

  2. Self-reflection. Find time every day to reflect on yourself. This can be done after meditation or perhaps when you go for a walk. It is also a good idea to start a self-reflection journal so that you can write down your thoughts and feelings about this particular day and yourself on that day.  

  3. Mindfulness. Being mindful means paying attention to things around you. Especially those things that we usually tend to take for granted. Making mindfulness your daily practice is a great way to make you more connected to the present moment. When you make it your daily practice to just pause and notice things, people and the sensations in your body in the present moment, gradually you will learn to appreciate more every passing moment. You will worry less and your anxiety will gradually disappear as these emotions are usually connected to either reliving the past or creating some catastrophic images of the future.

  4. Ask people you trust to describe you. Another great way to gain more self-awareness is to ask people that you trust for their honest feedback about yourself. Make sure that you tell them that the purpose of this exercise is to help you become a better version of yourself.

These are four simple steps that will help you gain even more self-awareness so that you can start to create the life that is aligned with your values and your inner-self. If you feel that you need some help on this journey, feel free to message me anytime.