The importance of self-awareness

The importance of self-awareness

Self-awareness is defined as the ability to identify your own strength, preferences and values. This ability helps a person to understand their emotions, thoughts and insight. In this social media age and the continuous rise of modernity, people often lose sight of who they are and tend to identify themselves rather with who they see on TV and social media platforms. This, unfortunately, makes some lose their identity and become less aware of themselves. The reason being, seeking identity from what they see around them rather than an intrinsic view on who they really are and how they feel about various things.

Therefore, our lesson today leads to finding out why self-awareness is important. I believe that this ability is necessary for different areas of our lives including leadership, work, interacting with others and so on. Before we dive in, take a moment and think about how you would describe yourself to another person (without mentioning any external factors such as your family or friends. Concentrate on yourself and how you’re feeling and how you behave. Think about your strength and weaknesses, what makes you smile? What makes you angry? This is an exercise you can do to find out how self-aware you are, it gives you a feel of self-knowledge or introspection about YOU.

Self-awareness and emotional intelligence: Self-awareness is related to success and emotional intelligence. This ability helps you to create goals that are achievable because you can look into your weaknesses and strengths and the drive that leads you to set your goals. Self-awareness helps you to guide yourself down the right path which in turn allows you to pursue opportunities that fit your skillset, your tendencies as well as your preferences. What it does is that it makes the process of identifying situations and people who hit our triggers easier to see at the same time anticipate our reactions. Self-awareness allows us to make behavioural changes that are positive and in turn, lead to greater personal and interpersonal success.

Self-awareness helps to have more empathy towards others: when you are more empathic, you are able to build better relationships with others. People often have a need to be understood and have their feelings validated. Many times, they need this the most when they are upset before they can listen to a different point of view or a more logical explanation. Self-awareness in this case helps to understand others first before you are understood.

It helps have improved critical thinking skills. During the process of analysing and separating yourself from your emotions in order to form an objective picture, you get to improve your critical thinking skills. Afterwards, you can use this and apply the skill in other areas of life. The onset of critical thinking during this time rises from the process of thinking and reflecting honestly on yourself and your actions, which helps you to become more self-aware.

You have better self-regulation with self-awareness. Self-regulation is a helpful framework that deals with the management of an emotion’s frequency and intensity. It helps especially people who struggle with their reactions and they feel bound to intense feelings. In order to be better at self-regulation, you first need to understand your emotions and what triggers them. Luckily, with self-awareness, the process of self-regulating and making decisions such as avoiding certain triggers becomes easier.

As you become more self-aware, remember to appreciate the strengths and weaknesses of your own character. Once you realise this, you are able to take action and make choices and decisions that are consistent with your own abilities. The ability itself is not learned in a book, although you can use books to help guide you into practising more self-reflection, it is achieved through the process of using what you have learned about yourself and using that information to inform decisions, behaviours as well as interactions with others (self-reflection).