As you can see from the title the topic of our discussion today is how to know yourself better. We will look at what this means, why it is important and how we might go about learning more about ourselves.
Knowing yourself is the key to unlocking your full potential. I helps you connect to your core self, your values, your needs and your desires. You need to get ot know yourself the same way you know your friends. Spend time with them.
The most difficult thing in life is to know yourself – Thales
This is one of the know yourself quotes, out of the millions out there, that resonated with me. Basically it was because my journey so far has been really hard. I have some real self-esteem issues and the thought of taking a closer look at them was daunting.
Do you know who said ‘know thyself’? It was inscribed on the forecourt of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi in ancient times. It is also one of the founding concepts of modern day philosophy. It would seem then that the topic of self-knowledge is not new. People have been seeking the answer to the question of how to know yourself better for a long time.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines self-knowledge as ‘knowledge or understanding of one’s own capabilities, character, feelings, or motivations’.
Well what do you think? Is this how you would define self-knowledge? I know for me it made it very clear about the different aspects of who I am that I need to think about throughout my journey.
A LIFE FOR YOU
This is the why part of our discussion. Why is self-knowledge important? Why would we put ourselves through this? The only answer really is, because you want to build a life for you. A life that is the embodiment of everything that you hold dear.
This journey is for you if:
- You feel like something is missing from your life
- You struggle to find meaning and purpose in your life
- You feel disconnected from you core beliefs – values, needs and desires
While we are wend our way along the path to enlightenment, we should take the time to consider each aspect of ourselves. You will see below some of the reasons I think self-discovery is important, no doubt your will have more:
Understanding – Learning to understand yourself better. To find your authentic self. In understanding yourself better you know what is right for you. To know what is important to you, what makes you happy.
Fulfilling – To fill your life with what makes you feel complete. A world and a life that reflects the things that are important to you. The things that fill you with ‘power’ and ‘passion’. To have a life that makes you feel like you are exactly where you are meant to be.
Confidence – To know that who you are is enough and perfect. To find the courage to step out into the world as 100% you. To know that the whole of you is perfect.
A world rich in who you are – Go and build a life that is rich in the trappings of who you are. Filled with experiences, people and places that inspire you, that make you feel alive. A world where you are the creator, where every aspect is as you want it and one that you want to share with those you love.
Now, I am not saying this is going to be easy. It won’t. What I am saying is that you will reap the benefits. You, your friends and family, your work colleagues even, will be amazed at your transformation.
WHAT ABOUT LIVING LIFE TO THE FULLEST
Tools, tools, tools that is what we need now. Tools that we can use to help us on our journey to self-discovery.
Before we can even start, I think we should work out what self-discovery means for us. I looked in the Oxford Dictionary to define self-discovery, it is the process of acquiring insight into one’s own character. A process is a series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end. So we are looking at what actions we can take to acquire insight into our own character.
So how do you know who you are? What can you do to peel back the layers? Here are a few of the things that I know work for me, I hope they work for you too.
Find or build your ‘happy place’ – This is about building into your life a place of absolute safety and comfort. Not so easy in the busy world we inhabit. Make it into a sanctuary for you, a place where you get to be 100% you without judgement
Time – Set time aside every day to spend with yourself. Be selfish wiht this time, be a little bit precious and territorial. It may sound a bit over the top, but I know how hard it is to get this everyday. It has to be longer than 15 minutes and have ‘wind down’ built into it.
Winding down – I know this took the longest time. I actually found that it is a skill all of its own. To be able to let go of all your obligations and the expectations on you. Not easy to do in our very full lives but well worth the effort. So important so that you are free to just be.
Goal – Set a goal for each session. Now don’t forget, these goals have to be focused 100% on you. You are trying to build a more holistic picture of who you are. You are reconnecting with your inner self.
Keep a journal – I don’t know if I can say this enough. Writing down everything is critical to the process. To be able to see what you are thinking and own it is as expansive as it is frightening. Some of the things you will see are pretty bleak and will make you feel sad. Free writing has been transformational for me. It is writing, without borders, anything and everything without judgement.
Celebration – Don’t forget to build in some time to be thankful. Thankful, grateful, joyful, appreciative are some of the words that I have chosen for this part of my day. I do this in the morning as it sets the tone for how the rest of my day will go.
Please do not forget the only person you are trying to please in this process is you. Do what makes you feel good. Listen to your inner voice and trust yourself. The ideas above should be a guide only as you will develop a set of tools that work for you. Read everything, question constantly and create everyday.
Now I want you to set some time aside for yourself. Time to think about everything that you have learned and start to own it. If you have a journal then write your reflections in there. If you don’t have a journal then I suggest you go out and buy one or start an online journal.