Through the past year of blogging and journeying through my own personal development, I’ve collected ten fundamentals for personal growth, which I’m going to explore in the last ten weeks of the year. I’m going to take a different approach, and use the you pronoun,
I’m tired of being inside my head. I want to live out here, with you.
– Colleen McCarty
I’ve mostly forbidden myself from you in this space, but I want to start getting out of my head with so much – I I I – I’m crowding myself out.
This week, the fundamental is self-awareness.
1.Self-awareness is more than knowing who you are.
When you ask yourself “Who am I?” you also likely come to the question “Who do I want to be?”
Self-awareness is being able to determine the gap between who you are and who you want to be.
Knowing that you might want to be a better version of who you are isn’t to say that you need to go changing the core of your being, but rather, it’s about aligning your attitude and presentation to the world with what you want, what you believe, and what you value.
2.Self-awareness is knowing what you value.
Ask yourself “What matters to me?” Pull the corners of yourself into those values like you’re folding a sheet.
When you know what you value, it’s easier to be true to yourself.
3.Self-awareness is about asking how and what.
Not why, why, why.
Asking what could keep us open to discovering new information about ourselves, even if that information is negative or in conflict with our existing beliefs. Asking why might have the opposite effect.
Asking why about ourselves is a big introspective trap, but asking what or how are questions which can lead to answers that facilitate action toward personal growth.
Although Stasia means the term “inside-out congruency” specifically in regards to fashion, I included it because I think it is a much more visual term to define what I mean by alignment, which can sound a little airy and unattainable. Alignment brings the whole stage of self-awareness full-circle because it requires you to know who you want to be and what your values are. Alignment and inside-out congruency are really just terms to say that your behaviors and the ways you present yourself to the world are authentic to who you are on the inside; and that harmony is at the core of what it means to be self-aware.
Thinking about yourself is not akin to knowing yourself. As someone who has struggled with depression and anxiety, I have thought about myself a lot, and all that thinking never got me half as far as doing. While I can think that I value my relationships, for example, that value never feels like a truer part of my being until I show the people in my life that I love them with my actions.
While it’s important to start with self-knowledge, you will not have full self-awareness until you can point to how your behaviors and actions support your beliefs.
What are some of the values you try to live by? How does aligning your behaviors with those values change your perception of yourself?