You’ve probably heard “self awareness” buzzing around the internet. That alongside manifestation, simple living and meditation is all the rage right now, and I’m not mad about it. I started this blog over 5 years ago as a means to hold myself accountable to let go of urgency, impulsive behaviors, and to become more self aware and at home within my own mind/body/soul – so the fact that the world is catching on (at such a crucial time in history, I might add), is gratifying to me. It brings chills up and down my spine.
I’m here for it.
So what is self awareness, exactly?
By definition, self awareness is the state or condition of being aware; having knowledge; consciousness:
Having self-awareness means that you have a sharp realization of your personality, including your strengths and weaknesses, your thoughts and beliefs, your emotions, and your motivations.
To me, self awareness is the true key to happiness and internal freedom.
This has become the most gratifying part of my healing journey over the past 2 years. Becoming self aware is the best gift I’ve ever given to myself — and its something that you can’t un-do.. you can’t un-feel, once you’ve jumped in.
When you practice self awareness, you essentially give yourself permission to truly witness your thoughts, to recognize them, give them grace, honor them and to let them guide you – instead of burying them under the rug, shutting them off, or judging yourself for them. It becomes the catalyst to taking control of your life once and for all — it allows you to go inward and make changes to create the life that you’ve always wanted (and no doubt, deserve).
This could include an array of things: your emotional patterns, bad habits that you want to change, toxic relationships you want to let go of, partners that you want to call in, to rid yourself of anxiety, to manifest anything that you desire, really.
Self awareness gives you the permission and the freedom to completely surrender to your own life — to make decisions and changes that are authentic and true for you.
So lets jump in to 5 ways you can start to practice self awareness, right now.
1. Write it all down. all of it.
I’ve had some of my previous mindfulness advising clients really struggle with this in the past. The act of putting everything down onto paper can feel really vulnerable. So before I dive into what I’d suggest you journal about, let me first say that you can 100% burn the pages once you’re done. A journal does not, by any means, have to be a sentimental keepsake. First and foremost, it’s a tool.
Ok so you have a journal and you want to become more self aware. This is where we’ll be able to see patterns that show up within our lives and our personalities, where we’re able to pin point our triggers, our strengths, our weaknesses, the list goes on. What you can discover just by journaling is astounding, but you have to be willing to be truthful and transparent with yourself.
Start by asking yourself these same 5 questions every night for 2 weeks:
– what went well today?
– what didn’t go well today?
– what did I learn today?
– what could I have done better?
– how am I feeling in this exact moment?
Start there and continue this for 2 weeks before you go to bed. At the end of 2 weeks, I can guarantee you you will pick up on patterns, habits, reoccurring thoughts and triggers that you may not have given much thought to before.
Self awareness has so much to do with knowing yourself fully from the inside, out. So this is where we begin.
Yeah yeah yeah I know. It’s not for everyone! I’ve always been the first to say that it doesn’t have to be traditional meditation to make it count, or to make it impactful. List out different ways you can meditate that give you that feeling of inner peace. For me, that’s usually a guided meditation of some sort, taking a bath filled with salts and surrounded by candles, or sitting near the water.
The goal is to just be still with yourself in whatever way feels good, sans distractions.
3. Notice your energy patterns.
For the women who are listening — this means tracking your period. 1,000% do this and i promise you, you will be blown away by how much you can lean into each phase of your cycle when you’re aware of what’s going on with your body.
I learned all about this by reading this book, and I’m not kidding when I say it’s completely transformed both my personal and professional life. (sidetone: disregard the fact that the title implies it’s for mothers – it’s for all women. Trust.)
4. Make a like and dislike list.
I do this pretty much quarterly to ensure that I’m always 100% real with myself and the things that I like — with social media being such a thing, its easy to get lost in what everyone else is doing and enjoying.. so I make sure to check in with myself about what it is that I truly like and enjoy, and what I don’t. This also makes it so much easier to say “no thank you” to things I know won’t serve me.
5. Take pause.
Challenge yourself to not act impulsively. This can be as small as waiting to hit send on an email until you’ve read and re-read what it is you want to say, saying “let me think about it” before committing to plans, not feeling the need to break silence when it occurs, waiting 24 hours to purchase something that feels impulsive, etc.
By taking pause, you’re making room for reflection. You’re giving yourself the space to really check in with your insides: does this feel good? Does this embody what I really believe? Will my head hit the pillow in peace tonight? Am I showing up in love? Is this what I really want? Is this the right decision for me?
What are some of the ways that you tune in with yourself each day? Are there any self awareness practices that you’ve implemented that you’ve found helpful?