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  • Dr. Gargi Sandilya

4 Tips to building self-awareness and create positive change

Would you like to create positive change in your life? A wonderful place to start is by increasing self-awareness.

Simply speaking, self-awareness is really about how well we know and understand ourselves, our values, our goals and very importantly our reactions in the face of challenging or difficult situations. It includes our knowledge of our strengths, limitations, ideas, thoughts, beliefs, responses, attitudes, emotions and motivations. A clear idea of how others perceive us is also a significant aspect of self-awareness, as much as the understanding of the impact of our actions and thoughts on others.

So without more ado, here are 4 tips for developing self-awareness:

1. Maintain a journal or diary – Keep a small journal with you all the time and just jot down specific triggers, ebbs and falls in emotions, interesting ideas and thoughts that pop into your head through the day. At the end of the day, you could spend a few minutes analyzing your experience, uncover possible underlying causes for reactions through the day. As you maintain this journal over a period of time, you will be able to see patterns emerging out of it, patterns that works for you and those that do not. You can then choose to work on changing those patterns that do not support your growth.

2. Mindfulness practice – Mindfulness is simply being fully present in the moment. Practicing mindfulness is a very powerful tool to build self-awareness. Meditation is one such practice. You could start with a simple practice of 5 minutes a day and slowly work it up over a period of time. Or if that does not call to you, you could even decide to do one activity in a mindful manner everyday. For example, Mondays could be for mindful eating, Tuesdays for mindful brushing, Wednesdays for mindful walking, and so on.

3. Me time – Spending some “me time” thinking about yourself, your dreams, your aspirations and how what you did today helped you get closer to where you see yourself in a few years, is another very useful tool. This can help reveal where your actions may not be in sync with your goals and then you work on aligning them.

4. Friends – Last but not the least, asking your friends to describe your strengths and limitations, and any other aspect that you wish to uncover about yourself, can help bring things into perspective. Some times we do not realize the impact we have on others or even how the others are perceiving us. This exercise ca help reduce the blind spots you have and expand your self-awareness.

Wishing you loads of success with self-awareness, the first step to positive change!

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