One of the major obstacles to maximizing your success and happiness is a lack of self-awareness. You know your friends’ flaws better than they do. It’s human nature to not have an accurate view of yourself.
We’d rather stick our heads in the sand and remain oblivious to our shortcomings. We’d prefer to believe that we’re unlucky rather than taking the wrong approach.
This presents a huge challenge, because if you can’t see yourself and your behaviors accurately, how can you grow and evolve optimally?
If you’re brave enough to develop a keen sense of self-awareness, you’ll be more likely to have a successful and rewarding life.
Try these techniques to learn more about yourself:
1. List your values. Taking an hour to identify and prioritize your values will tell you a lot about yourself. You’re bound to find a few surprises if you take the time to do this exercise.
2. Write down your goals. Defining what you’d like to have, do, and experience in your lifetime is also very revealing. Most of us are too busy surviving from one day to the next to consider our goals. Make time to determine the type of life you want to experience, and you’ll become more self-aware.
3. Keep a journal. There are entire books written about journaling. Read one of them and develop your own journaling process. Writing is different from the incessant chatter happening between your ears all day long. Self-awareness is only a notebook and a pen away.
4. Have a heart-to-heart with a close friend. Your friends and family know more about you than you know about yourself. They can see your flaws and strengths quite clearly. Be brave and ask them to tell you about yourself.
5. Meditate. If you want to understand your mind, meditate. You’ll be shocked by what you find. Meditation is great for your physical health, emotional health, and self-awareness. Thirty minutes a day will reveal a lot about you.
6. Use your imagination. Imagine you’re a fly on the wall and visualize how you interact with others. Remember both stressful and happy experiences. How do you think your coworkers, friends, family, neighbors, and others view you? How do you come across? How do you think a stranger in the store views you?
7. Take personality tests. There are many personality and aptitude tests available online, many of them for free. Take these tests and see what they have to say about you. Before dismissing anything that seems way off base, really think about it. Then, ask a close friend if they think the assessment is accurate.
8. Identify the traits in others that bother you. What do you dislike about others? What does this say about you? Try to be objective and see if you have these same traits. We are often turned off by people that exhibit characteristics we don’t like in ourselves.
How self-aware are you? Do you know how others view you? Do you understand your flaws? What are your greatest strengths? In what type of environment do you thrive? What are your values? What are your goals? How did you contribute to the failure of your past relationships?
If you can’t answer these questions quickly and easily, developing greater self-awareness will benefit you. Until you understand yourself well, your life will appear to be determined by forces beyond your control.
Become more self-aware and regain mastery over your life!