I was coaching a client recently, and they were talking about how much work it takes to be self-aware all the time. They went on to say it was a huge effort to be conscious of their thoughts and feelings, and that they would prefer not having to do it constantly. I told them they were right, and that being self-aware does take a lot of work, which can be painful, exhausting, and even annoying, but the benefits are well worth it, as difficult as it may be to reach them.
Having self-awareness is how we get to know ourselves better, but we have to be willing to go deeper to connect to our inner workings, meaning the thoughts that are percolating or stirring beneath the surface. It's a lot easier to just ignore the voices in our head that are telling us all sorts of things that don't make us feel good about ourselves, but until we're willing to take a closer look at what all that inner chatter is about, it's just going to get louder, and more impossible to disregard.
So you decide. Do you want to work less on yourself because it takes too much of an effort, or do you want to confront what's really going on with you, as unpleasant as it may be, so that you can overcome it? Self-knowledge is empowering. It's taking ownership of oneself, and that means being honest about our worries, insecurities, and overall fears. Until we confront and challenge those negative thoughts that keep our self-doubt, anxiety, and fear alive in us, we're going to be at the affect of them, even if we try and ignore them. Yes, being self-aware does take work, but as I said, well worth it because you get to know yourself so much better in the process, and might find out that there's a lovable and worthy person inside you that's desperate to be acknowledged.
Here are 7 tips on how to make self-awareness your friend, and going within, a place of refuge and healing:
1. Begin With A Meditation - Sit quietly, close your eyes, and take a few deep breaths in and out. Tell yourself you are open to going deeper within yourself with love and acceptance.
2. Be Available To Know Yourself - Welcome self-awareness as an opportunity to know who you are better. View it as a wonderful chance to improve on, and change what you don't like about yourself.
3. Ask For Guidance - Ask your higher wisdom to guide you to what you need to know. Tell yourself you are willing to hear whatever it is with non-judgment.
4. Be The Observer - Listen to what comes up for you as if you are a witness of yourself. Take note of the thoughts that tell you who you are. Are they negative or positive?
5. Identify Your Beliefs - Try and remember the first time you told yourself something negative like; "I'm unlovable" or "not enough" or "unworthy", or anything that's diminishing or critical. Ask yourself why do you still need to believe it? Did someone influence that belief? Do you have something to gain from believing that thought? Are you afraid to let it go, and if so, why?
6. Give Yourself Permission To Change Your Thoughts - Tell yourself you are willing to change any negative thought that doesn't support your well-being, into a thought that does, and that you are ready to do it now. Say quietly to yourself; "I am lovable" or "I am worthy" or "I am enough." You can tell yourself anything that is positive and affirming.
7. Thank Your Inner Self - Thank your inner self for being a safe place for you to go. Tell it that you trust it will always welcome you gently and unconditionally, and even if it has things to tell you that are painful or difficult to hear, together you can work through it to get exactly what you need to grow and evolve.
And remember, self-awareness is a valuable gateway to self-realization. Allow yourself to fulfill your greatest potential.