March is celebrated as Spiritual Wellness Month. It is a time to reflect on the values, ethics and morals that add value and give meaning to your life. Here at diGJamaica, we’re going on a quest for 30 days of inspiration: extracting the common principles from different religions and systems of belief that help their followers to find inner peace, purpose and direction. Each day for the month of March, we will be sharing another principle with you. Join us as we embark on this journey to spiritual wellness.
What we’ve covered so far:
Pathway to Happiness gives a great definition for self-awareness: “Having a clear perception of your personality, including strengths, weaknesses, thoughts, beliefs, motivation, and emotions”. When a person is self-aware, they are able to accurately assess how and why they respond to certain things in certain ways. From there, they are able to decide what and how to change. We’ve all heard the saying from the book Art of War by Sun Tzu: “Know thyself.” It’s a timeless reminder of the importance of paying attention to how you are feeling, thinking, acting and reacting to life’s many situations. The self-aware person learns from these observations about his/her personality traits, strengths and weaknesses, then uses this information to improve.
Psychologist Daniel Goleman, author of the book Emotional Intelligence, explains that self-awareness is a critical aspect of emotional intelligence. He also says it comprises emotional awareness, accurate self-assessment and self-confidence. Skills You Need sums it up thus: “Without awareness and understanding of ourselves, and a sense of self rooted in our own values, it is hard, if not impossible, to be aware of and respond to the emotions of others.”
Here are some ways in which you can develop self-awareness:
- Regular reflection and introspection
- Mindfulness (of yourself and others)
- Solicit feedback from good, trusted friends and from people at work.
- Speak to a professional (like a counsellor or psychiatrist)