Self-awareness is the condition of being constantly aware of your thoughts, beliefs, emotions, and actions. It’s about truly understanding who you are, how you act alone or around others, and how you make decisions. It’s about developing who you really are versus who you are expected to be. Over time, consistence and practice develops your self-control.
It would be an understatement to say that self-awareness changed my life. In essence, it’s you learning how to be responsible for you.
Dr. Maya Angelou once said: “When you know better you do better.”
Once you become aware, that’s it; excuses are no longer viable. When you deny the facts about yourself, you start to live and breathe self-defeat.
Here are 3 habits that helped me exercise self-awareness:
This practice is essential. Write down your strengths and weaknesses so you become aware of them. Your weaknesses is what you’re working on; your strengths help you convert weaknesses. Don’t feel bad if your weaknesses outnumber your strengths; my weaknesses outweighed my strengths by threefold.
Self-analysis is a stepping stone to become aware of your strengths and weaknesses, bad habits, opportunities seized or missed, and things you said or didn’t say, etc. I do this practice usually towards the end of the day or at least once a week.
Overtime and with practice, you learn to become aware of everything. You put it all out in the open for you to see. Without this step, it may be hard to figure out where to start.
And then comes…
You have to admit to yourself that you are obviously not perfect — no one is.
But can you begin to master yourself? Absolutely.
When I chose to start exercising self-awareness, all the roadblocks were laid out in front of me. How could I turn my cheek and pretend they weren’t real? How could I ignore the facts? The sudden awareness that you’re hit with is a rare opportunity to make life better. Some people never realize — or adamantly refuse — to admit to some weaknesses that are holding them back. Ultimately, it’s a matter of choice.
Acknowledge the roadblocks in your life and start making the change today. Practice the skill so you can develop the habit. It’s going to be hard, for sure. Impossible? Never. Start with baby steps.
Now that you are fully aware and acknowledged the distractions that are slowing you down, the rest is up to you.
Paying attention to the details
In a situation where you’re angry or frustrated, that is the perfect time to exercise your self-awareness.
It would be easy to argue or fight back with the other person, but ultimately what would that do for you? Is it effective? Pay close attention to your emotions and thoughts when they arise. Ask yourself: What is the difference between these emotions and what needs to get done? Let this shed light on where you should invest your energy. Yes, you will fail from time to time and lose control, but you will always have another opportunity to do it right.
This, in turn, develops a habit. You unlearn the habit of doing something ineffective such as yelling and complaining, and instead you do something more effective (for whatever the situation may be).
Practicing self-awareness can be the start to living life the way it was intended for you to live.
You don’t have to live with overwhelming anxiety, stress, and self-defeating thoughts — those are all choices, not illnesses. You can tweak your mindset to focus on the things that matter, and erase everything irrelevant. You can become aware.
Analyze yourself thoroughly and daily. Pay attention to the details, small or large.
Just remember: choice is always present.
Thoughts? Share your ideas in the comments below.