With Merci Miglino, MCC
Self-awareness is a powerful tool to help you live the life you’ve always wanted rather than settling for whatever comes your way. Self-awareness is the foundation of personal growth and success and is essential to leadership, self management and professional success which in turn helps you live a happier, more fulfilling and genuine life.
When we talk about self-awareness we mean:
- acting consciously instead of reacting to people and events.
- genuinely appreciate yourself! Accent on GENUINELY!
- Behaving positively instead of creating additional obstacles when faced with a challenge
So where do you begin to cultivate greater self-awareness? Here are three not-so-easy steps (but we know you can do it!)
As most people know by now, meditation is the practice of improving your moment-by-moment awareness. But meditative practices can be simple and require no special posture or outfits. Some forms of meditation have us focus on our breath the simple acts of inhaling and exhaling. So no excuses – no need to go all formal or ritualistic unless that’s your way. For example, finding a few seconds to focus on your breathing before sleep, or use one of the many apps available to help with this process.
And don’t dismiss the simple meditative benefits of those mundane tasks that inspire a kind of therapeutic serenity, like washing dishes, working in the garden, and attending art exhibits or listening to music.
2. Take Psychometric Tests
There are a million of these. Myers-Briggs, Strengthfinder, DISC and others can be used for greater self-awareness. They are designed to compel us to consider a set of traits or characteristics that most accurately describe us relative to other people. There are no right or wrong answers just information to help us know ourselves better.
3. Ask your trusted friends
None of us is entirely aware of how we come across to others. We have to rely on the feedback. Ask your friends or colleagues to play the role of “honest mirror”.
Make sure they feel safe to give you an informal, but direct and honest view. If you’re up for it and you really want it, ask friends to call you on something you know you want to change. For instance, “Look, I know I tend to want to “one-up” folks in conversation, but do me a favor and each time I do that, let me know – preferably discreetly – so I can learn to stop.”
If this is too uncomfortable, get a coach and ask them for their feedback. And pay attention to your reaction when they share an observation. There’s more self-awareness information in your reaction than in whatever the coach just shared.
Remember – Building self-awareness is a life-long process. You’re never “done.” But having a goal of greater awareness can help you move faster and further along the way.