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Self-Awareness: 7 Questions and Answers

There is a big focus on self-awareness. However, it is often unclear what self-awareness is and why it's so important. Self-awareness is the capacity to see yourself objectively and raise consciousness on inner limits and resources. Understandably, it is not simple to reach complete objectivity about oneself, but anyone can achieve a certain degree of self-awareness with some open-minded attitude.

While everyone has a basic idea of what self-awareness is, often there are still
open questions. This blog is an attempt to answer some of them.

What is self-awareness?

Self-awareness is one of the main elements of the self and the way you experience yourself. Self-awareness is fundamental to understanding who you are, but it is not something you constantly focus on. Instead, self-awareness grows when you want to understand the reason for specific reactions or emotions in particular situations and ask yourself questions. Questions like who am I? What drives me toward certain directions rather than others? Why do some events go under my skin while others don't?​ What triggers my reactions, and what leaves me cold? And what are the feelings behind all these?

The aim of self-awareness is not to uncover past traumas or dig into the unconscious self; it's a way to understand what is happening for you in specific moments and how emotions unfold and impact your behaviour.

There are two types of self-awareness; both have very distinctive features and are not necessarily interrelated. The first one is related to the self, and the second one is based on the experience of the outer environment.

Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart.

Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.

C.G. Jung

Why is becoming self-aware important?

When you step back and think about what is happening, you learn new stuff about yourself. Some of the things you discover will find your approval, and others won't. In each of us, there are flaws, insecurities, feelings of unworthiness, anger, resentment.

You may have had to endure challenging experiences, inflicted pain on others, faced situations in ways you may not feel proud of. Yet, it is not easy to admit details you are ashamed of, even only to yourself.

On the positive side, once you know and accept your weaknesses and learn to deal with parts of yourself you were once uncomfortable with, you will recognise unhelpful patterns and begin to promote self-awareness and, consequently, inner growth.

Confronting and painful emotions are part of the journey to self-awareness. It takes courage to face one's inner world and also see oneself through the eyes of others. However, the unfolding of the process and appreciating the many facets of yourself will allow you to positively face most of the future challenges.