“They have no right to do that to me. Who hell do they think they are?” I thought as I was stewing about how I’d recently been fired from my first job in LA. This was over 12 years ago now. I had worked at the Four Seasons hotel as a valet for just 5 weeks before I managed to crash a customers car. For some reason they fired over that. How petty right? Ha ha.
At the time I felt I was treated unfairly, that I should have been given a second chance, that they completely screwed me and my attempt at a new life in Los Angeles.
And while that may have all felt true back then, the bottom line is, I deserved to get fired. Why did I have trouble accepted that? Largely due to my lack of self-awareness.
At that time I suffered from severe social anxiety. In fact, most of my life I suffered from terrifying social anxiety. And how did that keep from from being self-aware? Well, I ended up attached part of my identity to this ‘social anxiety’. And because I’d convinced myself that was part of who I was and that I was doomed to suffer from that for the rest of my life…I failed to become aware of the good things about myself.
Have you ever had this type of experience? Maybe you got depressed and thought you’d be depressed forever? Maybe you got into an argument and could only see the other person being at fault. Maybe you’re broke all the time and blame your shitty job or the crap economy. Maybe you judge and react to everything in your life without realizing that you can positively impact those things around you merely by changing your perspective. How? You wonder. Develop your self-awareness.
“It’s your ability to notice your feelings, your physical sensations, your reactions, your habits, your behaviors, and your thoughts. You are aware of all those different aspects as if you were another person outside yourself observing them.” Lifeskillsthatmatter.com
A simple way to increase your self-awareness is by regularly self-assessing your life, this is done by really taking a look at what’s going on in your life, from an objective perspective. Or at least, as much of an objective perspective as you can. And then ask yourself questions like, Why did I get into an argument with my sister? Why am I broke? Why am I angry lately?
These types of questions while considering recent situations in your life will help see things from a different angle which will allow you to see how you were wrong when you thought you were right. Or it will let you see that thing you thought you were good at, your actually can get better at. Plus you’ll notice and appreciate more of your strengths as you self-assess.
It can help to imagine a good friend of yours has been through the exact same situation you just dealt with. How would they deal with it? What could they do differently? How could they learn from that situation? By regularly taking introspective self-assessments of your life, you will gain a more objective view of yourself and what’s best for you. And this perspective can allow you to see that you can often figure things out better on your own than by sharing the situation with friends or family. Oh and do your best to not do this from your ‘inner critic or judge’. That will just make you feel worse.
So investing even just a few minutes a day to self-assess will quickly add to your self-awareness which will add to your personal growth.
And this will all help you express yourself more easily and confidently.
And that will all allow you to become increasingly more authentic and increasingly able to courageously go toward your dreams.
“Self-awareness at it’s finest is accepting your shortcomings and accentuating your strengths” Gary Vaynerchuk
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