How well do you know yourself? Does it even matter? Most definitely. It matters in not only your personal life, but it makes a tremendous impact in your professional life.
Earlier this month, I wrote about the importance of storytelling and why we teach it here at Experience Institute. We carefully craft our curriculum to teach skills that are beneficial to today’s market, which is why we’ve included the concept of self-awareness.
What exactly is self-awareness? It’s an honest self-assessment of your own emotional strengths, vulnerabilities, attitude, values, personality traits, and even coming to terms with any unresolved issues. Understanding yourself allows you to develop, navigate, and maintain your relationships with everyone around you, which is necessary in being a successful leader and team member.
Self-awareness does not come naturally to many, so here are few ways to get to know yourself:
- Do a Psychometric/Personality test. Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, OCEAN personality test, The Color Code, and Enneagram. Taking a test is probably the easiest method to learn more about yourself. I prefer the Myers-Briggs as it has helped me really understand my strengths, weaknesses, and how I can successfully use or improve them. And, here’s a link to a free version.
- Reflect. Talking to yourself is not always a sign of mental illness and actually helps you stay on track and grounded. Incorporate it in your daily grind and make it a habit.
- Get into uncomfortable situations. You’d be surprised how much you learn about yourself when you’re experiencing something new and scary.
- Keep a journal. Consistently writing and reviewing your thoughts and feelings allow you to understand the emotions that you’ve experienced. This will help you identify the triggers to each, therefore, act accordingly in future situations.
- Ask for feedback. Never be afraid to hear the truth because the without it, you would have a difficult time improving yourself or flexing your strengths. Informally ask for feedback from your peers, management, and even family.
Try one or all, but most importantly, always be honest with yourself.