Becoming self-aware is an active and conscious process.
Self-awareness is the ability to get in touch with your authentic self, to clearly assess your strengths, weaknesses, core values, relationships and limitations.
It is a skill that improves job satisfaction, mental health, your relationships and understanding of others.
Wondering how great leaders acquire self-awareness?
The benefits of self-awareness
Self-awareness helps you identify your passions, bring out your authentic self, open yourself to learning, receive honest feedback and detach yourself from the opinion of others.
Furthermore, self-aware leaders are emotionally intelligent, lead with confidence and compassion, understand that leadership is an ongoing process, upgrade their organization and uplift their teams.
Self-aware leaders understand how their behavior affect the people around them and subsequently have great people skills.
Self-aware leaders may not climb the ladder faster but they may gain more respect and trust from their peers.
Basically, they are the opposite of toxic leaders because they constructively acknowledge, process and manage their emotions.
How do leaders acquire self-awareness?
There are a few steps to take for you to acquire more self-awareness.
1. Look for patterns in your behavior
Sometimes, we are so busy fighting off whatever is coming at us to realize that we are having reoccurring experiences and events, that we are holding on to negative assumptions and beliefs.
In order to stay focused and be ready for any life challenges, we have to take time to identify our triggers and track our patterns of behavior.
To see positive and negative patterns in your behavior., you can hold a journal and write about yourself objectively.
2. Take a self-awareness assessment tool
Self-awareness assessment tools give you an insight into your personality type, your character, the way you handle different situations.
They help you discover your strengths, weaknesses and hidden passions.
The StrengthsFinder, StandOut, DISC Profiles and Emotional Intelligence are great tools that have been used by most organizations.
3. Stay focused and practice self-discipline
Self-discipline will help you monitor your emotions and get them under control.
Your goals and purpose will give you enough motivation to practice self-discipline.
4. Detach yourself from your thoughts
You cannot control everything but you can control the way you respond to life circumstances.
That is why you must detach yourself from your thoughts so you can accept them.
5. Be confident in your abilities
People may be better than you at different things.
But there is only one you and that is your superpower.
To grow confidence in your abilities:
- Embrace your strengths and weaknesses.
- Find ways to put them to work.
- Admit your mistakes and seek out continual improvement.
- Be compassionate towards yourself and simply revisit your core values.
6. Observe how you affect your surroundings
Sometimes, we want to talk about topics that matter to us, connect with people who make sense or belong to a group.
However, people are not always receptive to you because there is a margin between how we are and how we are perceived, because of their own insecurities, assumptions and lack of self-awareness.
It is up to you to determine using your self-awareness, whether or not you can be your best self or you want to belong.
To be mindful of your actions and words;
- Understand how your behavior and words can be misinterpreted and when it is time to stand up for yourself.
- Acknowledge that by getting to know yourself better, you will get to know others as well, to interpret their verbal and nonverbal cues.
7. Don’t make assumptions about people
This will help you make better decisions, navigate office politics, empathize for others, build improved teams and find team members who complement you.
8. Stay curious
There is no way you can fully get to know yourself and others.
Stay open-minded and give yourself enough space to step out of your comfort zone.
9. Don’t ignore your intuition
Your intuition sends information that you have not or don’t know how to process.
Your intuition is there to protect you and is right most of the time.
10. Ask for feedback
Leaders tend to ask for less feedback, to become less self-aware the more experience and the more power that they wield.
It becomes detrimental for them to ask for feedback from people they trust and respect.
11. Commit yourself to growing
Nobody is perfect. The people who have arrested their development are the people who need the most improvement.
Leadership is a long journey. You must always figure out what you can do to make things better and what you can do differently.
Last Words Of Advice!
It is goof to check in with yourself from time to time.
- Take time off in solitude to confront your decisions, to measure your progress and to reignite your fire.
- Recall the times that you felt your best and operated at your peak performance.
- Stephen R. Covey, in the The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, said it best: “Begin with the end in mind”.
- If you won the lottery today, what would you do with your life.
Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!
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