Have you ever stopped to ask yourself?
These questions can be overwhelming at first. I remember not having a clue about what I wanted and even why I might want it.
It wasn't until I sought clarity and really began to understand myself at a deeper level that my life got even better. I began to live a life full of passion, purpose and fulfilment every day.
You may be asking;
What is self-awareness?
Having high levels of self-awareness gives us the ability to monitor our thoughts, emotions and behaviours at any given time.
Why is self-awareness so critical to master?
I am incredibly passionate about helping people develop their own self-awareness.
If we don't know what drives us and our underlying values, then we can go through life chasing goals that won't bring us happiness or strive for things that will bring us no meaning.
In my 20s, I worked in sales; I worked hard every day to hit my targets. The only thing I focused on daily was financial rewards.
I wanted to build a million-dollar desk, and I became obsessed with achieving this. I said to myself daily "when I hit this target; I will be happy."
But guess what, by the time I hit this goal, I was burnt-out, frustrated and lacked any sense of joy.
My health and relationships had suffered in the process, and I didn't like the person I had become.
I tell you this story because from first-hand experience if we don't get clear on what truly matters we can go through life focused on the wrong things, and when we get them, we feel empty inside.
From the outside, I looked like I had it all, but on the inside, I felt anxious, overwhelmed and bored.
From getting to know myself, I realized that what gave me joy each day was ;
What I came to realize was the life I was living allowed me to do a minimal amount of these things.
I was living in a big city; I was working in an office, I was not using my creative brain, the only thing I was writing each day was emails, I wasn't able to sit and read as much as I wanted and by the time I got home from a long commute the last thing I wanted to do was prepare a healthy homecooked meal.
Maybe you can empathize with me here?
So I decided to take back control of my life and get clear on what I wanted and why.
My life has changed dramatically in the last couple of years (for the better), all because I got crystal clear on what I wanted.
I now live on the Gold Coast, and I am surrounded by nature every day. I work from home with no commute meaning more time for me to exercise, walk in nature, read, and work on myself daily.
I have more time to cook healthy meals in the evening with my husband, and as a blessing has taken our relationship to the next level.
From learning more daily, I am even more motivated to write and speak, which then inspires and empowers others to live their best life every day.
If I hadn't spent the time getting to know myself, I would still be in the 9-5 hamster wheel of life, unfulfilled, low energy and living for that Friday payslip to rinse and repeat the weeks.
If you can relate to any of this, then my friend you are not alone.
The great news is when you are aware of something, you have the power to change it.
This is WHY self-awareness is so critical.
So how do you begin to get clear on what you want so you can build a level 10 life?
Here are some of the steps I took;
Spend time each day/ week, reflecting on how you have felt.
What activities did you do that brought you joy and satisfaction?
What about your work, do you love?
What about the day/week made you feel frustrated?
"The quality of our lives will be determined by the quality of our questions".
So grab yourself a journal and start to notice patterns, triggers and behaviours. When do you feel at your best and when do you feel at your worst?
This is a crucial first step in building high levels of awareness.
Meditation is an essential part of building your self-awareness and understanding yourself at a deeper level. When I meditate, I sit and focus on my breath for the first few moments. Thoughts pop in and out (this is perfectly normal and all part of the process), but instead of following the thought, I allow it to pass and come back to my breath.
What I began to notice from spending time with myself each day was that I had a certain pattern that came up when I thought about specific activities and projects.
Some made me feel excited, and others made me tighten.
Through this process, I was able to identify what brought me joy and what was draining my energy and often causing me anxiety.
When I was aware of this, I had a choice, which allowed me to reclaim my personal power once more.
Meditation has also helped me remain calm and more focused throughout my day, enabling me to achieve more each week.
I encourage you to start a mediation practise if you are ready to understand yourself on a deeper level.
Not sure where to start? We have included meditations as a part of our membership
Choose a trusted person in your life: a parent, spouse, best friend, etc. Someone with whom you have a strong relationship with that would be willing to point out something that you could improve upon.
Start asking small questions such as:
Whatever comes up, do not criticize. You want to be open to learning. If you shut them down, your loved ones will not be open to helping you the next time you ask.
Set an intention each day for how you want to feel, and then act in accordance with that feeling.
If you wake up and say "today I want to feel energized" but my 2 pm you are exhausted acknowledge that.
What have you done that day to protect your energy? Have you taken enough breaks? Have you fueled yourself correctly? Have you been working on too many mundane tasks or putting others needs before your own?
You start your day like a full battery, and as the day goes on if we are not aware enough to recharge, we can get to the end of day and have nothing left to be the person we want to be for our loved ones.
Become aware of your energy and how you feel throughout the day and write your intention down somewhere you can see it every day as a reminder of how you want to show up.
Your values are the underlying compass that guides you.
You wouldn't start any journey without a map to get you to from where you are to where you want to be, so why do we do this in our lives?
It wasn't until I knew what my values were that my life began to make sense, and I began to live my life in alignment with what brought me joy and fulfilment each day.
Knowing my values also ensures that I stay on the right path and guarantees I quickly get back on track if I took the wrong step somewhere along the way.
So what are your values?
Take a look at the words below and notice what stands out to you the most.
Pick five words, and then put those words in order of importance.
Now that you have your values, you will be able to make better decisions and ensure you live your life incongruence.
I hope this article has helped you understand the importance of self-awareness.
When we know what we want and what drives us, we can take the first step in creating the life of our dreams.
We avoid climbing the wrong ladder of life and instead pursue fulfilling careers, businesses we are passionate about and make important life decisions that align with what will make us happy.
If you want to learn more about developing your self-awareness, be sure to check out The Mind to Lead for our exceptional course Life Re-Imagined.
"You have one life, but if you live it right one is enough"