What is Self-Awareness?
Conscious knowledge of one’s own character, feelings, motives, and desires.
Ex) “the process can be painful but it leads to greater self-awareness”
More and more for the past couple of months I’ve been hearing the buzzword “Self-Awareness”, mentioned within the worlds of Entrepreneurship and Personal Development. I’ve heard this word primarily from businessman, author, public speaker, thought leader, and entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. As I recently finished his book #AskGaryVee I wanted to dive deeper into self-awareness and define what it means to me.
Although I’ve heard the topic of self-awareness discussed before, Gary V. just puts an intriguing spin on it that others haven’t. This idea of knowing yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, to make better life decisions makes sense, right? If one knows themselves, understands their strengths, abilities, and natural gifts one could use those to their advantage. THAT MAKES SENSE, RIGHT?
Gary explains in his Article:
“Self-awareness allows people to recognize what things they do best so they can then go hard on those aspects of their life. It also helps you accept your weaknesses.
Self-awareness can help you do that.
Self-awareness is being able to accept your weaknesses while focusing all of your attention on your strengths.
The moment you decide to accept your shortcomings and bet entirely on your strengths, things will change. Trust me.”
Why Self-Awareness Can Be Difficult
Honestly seeing ourselves for who we really are is humbling, and can be painful. Typically, humans like to avoid pain. As pain is in the driver’s seat, fear can be the backseat passenger. Realizing that beyond fear and pain, lies freedom, possibility, and healing is the first step in the right direction. We have positives & negatives, and everything in between. Self-awareness requires seeing the truth for what it is. In some cases, the truth hurts.
“Process of forcing yourself to be self-aware requires drinking a shitload of humble Kool-Aid.” — Gary Vaynerchuk
Humans fight the ongoing battle and struggle between being the person we WISH TO BE vs. the person WE REALLY ARE. Self-Awareness forces us to accept “what is” rather than “what should be.” Therefore, it has the potential to cause upset feelings. Within ourselves lie strengths and abilities not yet tapped into, ones we may not even be aware of! Self-awareness helps draw out the natural strengths one possesses, and brings them to light. Thus, it is our responsibility to become self-aware, so we can further use what we have to help others and fulfill our purpose. From this practice, we can also solve OUR OWN problems in a more effective way. So, the practice of self-awareness is NECESSARY in every way.
Without an honest assessment of who we really are, we are just lying and kidding ourselves. We are delaying how much we really could give and receive from life. Being honest with ourselves means asking yourself the tough questions, and realizing you might not like the answers.
Why Aren’t We More Self-Aware?
Distractions. Our fast paced way of living doesn’t always allow for us to stop and think to reflect on life. As a result, people forget and/or choose not to take the time needed to check in with themselves, and learn more about themselves.
How To Become Self-Aware
1. Know your Strengths & Weaknesses:
“Asking people straight up to tell you your strengths and weaknesses.” — Gary Vaynerchuk
Assess yourself and/or have others do it.
2. Ask yourself the questions that need to be answered:
Give yourself permission to be courageous and face your fears.
One should be able to answer questions related to: Likes/dislikes, motivators/downers, preferences, habits/patterns.
Ask questions like:
“What would I do if _______________?”
“Could I deal with _____________situation?”
“What is stopping me from _______________?”
“What are my best/worst qualities?”
“ How would I respond if ___________?”
“What are my goals, beliefs, values?”
*If you need more questions to ask yourself, click on my blog post below.
3. Learn from your mistakes: Reflect.
Self-awareness is lifelong learning.
What happened? What could I have done better? Where did I go wrong? What can I do next time? What did I do well?
4. Try new things:
Have new experiences. Embrace the word, “Yes”. Trying new things means going outside your comfort zone. Going outside this zone doesn’t mean taking huge steps, start small. Little changes & decisions do the trick.
Opportunities exist, find them. If none exist, create them.
5. Recall your natural strengths & interests
(From childhood to present day)
Build trust with others, then ask those you trust who know you about yourself. Ask them about any stories, observations, or clues that could give you insight into yourself and who you are. Make sure this is done in a space where the other person feels safe.
What are/were you good at?
What are/were you naturally drawn to?
6. Learn from the past to make a better future: Think History.
View your BLUEPRINT. (WHAT)
Build your BASE. (WHO)
Recognize behaviors/patterns. (WHEN)
Make changes. (HOW)
7. Gather Resources
Once you realize your strengths & weaknesses, now it’s time to improve them. Gather the resources and knowledge needed to help you address these areas.
Utilize available resources so you can accelerate learning. Learn from the mistakes of others. Just because others make them doesn’t mean you have to.
Books, Videos, Courses, Podcasts, Mentors, Notebooks, Pencils & Paper.
*Self-Awareness Tip: If you want to become a certain type of person or embody some character trait, look up what the greats in history or famous person(s) did. Look up the person who has/had that trait. Learn from them.
8. Put in the time to give to yourself
Set aside some time to give to yourself, by improving yourself.
Small amounts of time spent on improving compounded over the course of days, weeks, and years will radically change your life. 5 minutes, 10 min, 15 min, and build upon there. THERE IS TIME, make room for it. No excuses.
Improve yourself NOW so you won’t have to pay the price for it LATER.
9. Take A Personality Test
Check out these links to personality tests. I’ve found these to be very accurate myself.
Free personality test | 16Personalities
Free personality test - take it to find out why our readers say that this personality test is so accurate, "it's a…
Personality test based on C. Jung and I. Briggs Myers type theory
Humanmetrics Jung Typology Test™ instrument uses methodology, questionnaire, scoring and software that are proprietary…
10. Think for Yourself
As outside resources and others will help you become more self-aware, you ultimately need to determine who you are by yourself. External input is great, and has its place, but nothing beats your own perspective, insight, and feelings. There is no substitute for YOU.
*If you’d like to learn how to think differently and think for yourself click my blog post below.
11. Become aware of your behaviors:
Ask yourself scenario questions. Detach yourself from your emotions. Reflect in the 3rd person. Reflect on past tendencies.
ex) How do you deal with pressure & pain?
Isolate yourself , become impatient, have decision fatigue, lack a filter, become frustrated, procrastinate, overeat, become lazy, stubborn, look inward, read, watch movies, don’t speak, argue.
Figure out how you have responded to situations, problems, and normal day-to-day living.
*If you’d like to become more self-aware check out my Instagram page for motivation, inspiration, and more.
By improving who we are we feel better about ourselves, because we our aiming in the direction of progress. Becoming self-aware means we are living life proactively, taking control, and learning about ourselves in the process.
If we KNOW WHO WE ARE, we can GROW WHO WE ARE.
Through self-awareness we can become who WANT TO BECOME & who we’re MEANT TO BECOME.
Self-Awareness is Truth.
Thinking, Reflecting, Accepting, Action.
Individuals Aspiring Mastery & Medium.com/@IAspireMastery.
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Individuals Aspiring Mastery (I AM) is for those seeking physical, mental, and spiritual self-mastery.
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