Ready for a surprising fact?
According to a study done by organisational psychologist Tasha Eurich, 95% of us believe we're self-aware when in reality the number is closer to 10-15%.
Ouch! That's a staggering misjudgment that is both scary and exciting.
It’s scary because self-awareness underpins our ability to see clearly. Without the self-awareness to see what's holding us back, we cannot move forward.
On the flip side, it’s exciting because so much of our potential may be quietly living in a state of unknown, waiting for our awareness to bring it fully to light.
One thing's for sure: To change an external condition, we first need to change our internal world. That's where self-awareness comes in.
Lack of self-awareness is like trying to clean your windows in the dark. You know they’re dirty, but you have no idea where to start. On the other hand, self-awareness shines a light on the areas we need to clean up. Here are 3 self-awareness hacks to powerfully upgrade your life.
Let’s start by understanding the definition of self-awareness:
The conscious knowledge and intimate understanding of our character, feelings and behaviours and the patterns by which we operate.
Self-awareness moves us from being reactive to response-able, so we can consciously respond instead of unconsciously react.
Below are three supercharged steps toward lifting the veil and opening up to more of your potential and ability to respond in life:
Step 1: Full Body Awareness
We are often painfully unaware of our bodies. Which means we often think our bodies as merely a vehicle that moves us from here to there. But our bodies are powerful guides that can help us if we tune in to them. The next time you encounter a triggering event (an argument with a loved one, a traffic jam when you're late for work, etc.), take a moment to bring your attention inward to notice what is happening in your body at the time you are triggered. Maybe your neck feels tight or you're breathing more rapidly. Full body awareness takes us out of knee-jerk response mode and into a more resourceful state where we are acting from our power instead of our pain.
Step 2: Notice Your Thoughts
What are the dominant thoughts that arise when a stressful incident triggers you? Notice the quality of your thoughts and the old familiar rabbit holes you jump down. Examine the inner dialogue. Have you heard those words, stories, thoughts before? Chances are, you have. What words or phrases frequently reappear? It’s important not to judge yourself but be a witness to it.
Step 3: Notice your Reaction
Most of us have a similar response or series of reactions when we're triggered. Perhaps you overeat and binge on sugar, pour yourself a strong one and numb yourself by watching too much television. Or maybe you distract yourself with excessive shopping or over-exercising. Notice what your "go to" reactions are when you're triggered and then name it.
What do these three steps have in common? Self-awareness. It's the first step toward making real change.
Again, it’s not about judging! It’s simply about noticing so you can to choose new responses.
Awareness doesn't judge or yell; it just is. Self-judgment is harsh. Self-awareness is neutral. And it’s that neutrality that allows us to look at ourselves openly, recognising our limitations with compassion and understanding for the work we still have ahead of us. It’s a powerful practice!
The Dailygreatness concept is a powerful self-awareness practice that helps you to create new neural pathways in your brain and new possibilities in your life by becoming inwardly aware of your patterns and then outwardly directing your thoughts to create lasting change.
When you ignite a willingness to explore your inner world and practice this 3-step process, you connect to your true power. Instead of creating life from your past you start to move into your potential.
Like all things worthwhile in life, it takes courage, commitment, and persistence but the rewards of doing so mean you'll no longer live by default but live by design — and that’s when life gets exciting.
Lyndelle Palmer Clarke is the founder of Dailygreatness, the author of the Dailygreatness Journals inspiring you to be your own guru and Rocking Fit a 12-week holistic training program designed especially for women.