What is self-awareness?
Being self-aware is developing a deeper understanding of your strengths, weaknesses, personality type, motivators, stressors, values, inner critic, and behavioural tendencies. It’s paying better attention to what you think and feel, and how you behave.
Having better self-awareness makes it easier for us to understand other people, and how they may perceive and interact with us.
Developing your emotional intelligence
How well do you know yourself? Better self-awareness will enable you to change your habits and improve your outcomes. Knowing oneself better will help you minimise your weaknesses and play to your strengths.
10 ways to improve your self-awareness:
1. Normalise daily reflection.
Make space for yourself to process. Remove digital distractions and tune in to how you are feeling. Be honest on what you could’ve done better today but praise yourself for what you did well.
2. Keep a journal.
Writing down your thoughts can help you process them better. It will also allow you to reflect on progress down the track.
3. Practise mindfulness.
This could be meditation for greater clarity. It could be sketching, going for a run or a nature walk, or perhaps it’s cooking dinner. What are your favourite tranquil activities?
4. Document your plans and goals.
Break your goals down into smaller progress goals and recognise the mental and physical roadblocks to achieving them.
5. Learn about what makes roadblocks.
Empower yourself by completing psychometric and personality tests to obtain clear information about yourself in relation to others. Examples include DiSC Profile, Myers Briggs, and The Four Tendencies Quiz.
6. Practise active listening.
Listening is about obtaining and understanding information in order to learn. Active listening means giving your full attention, deferring judgement and then responding appropriately.
7. Learn a new skill.
Learning new things requires flexibility and a fresh perspective, providing a great opportunity for self-awareness.
8. Seek different perspectives.
Actively seek feedback, at home and at work. We all have blind spots and feedback helps us to grow.
9. Clarify your values.
These run deep and they should actively influence our goals and plans. Don’t fall into the trap of wanting a big house and a fancy car unless it truly matters to you.
10. Get yourself out of your normal surroundings.
Be it an overseas trip or a mini break down the road, new places and experiences disrupt our routines causing us to learn new things about ourselves and be more self-aware.
The benefits of self-awareness
Better self-awareness will lead to better relationships, clearer thinking, improved moods, more effective communication and decision making, and increased productivity!
Leadership and self-awareness
Lead with purpose and trust. And, if you help your team to be more self-aware, you’ll help them become more productive, self-reliant, and agile.
Whether you want to be more accepting of yourself or more accepting of others, developing self-awareness is key to personal growth. It will also help you to build a better work environment and a more successful business.
“Self-awareness allows you to self-correct.” – Bill Hybels