Self-awareness is the key to starting your life reinvention journey. Merriam-Webster defines self-awareness as "an awareness of one's personality or individuality," but developing self-awareness is harder than the definition implies.
The reflection leading to self-awareness is the first step in developing Emotional Intelligence (EI) and focus your energy on what will make you thrive. When you cannot pin down precisely what they are passionate about, it is usually a by-product of not understanding your own emotions, what makes you happy, and the steps you need to take to reach that sense of accomplishment we all seek.
Do you know successful people that live what they consider to be meaningless life? They have accomplished a lot but are not able to identify themselves with whom they became. Their sense of belonging is outside of the success they created for themselves.
When you realize there are several things you do not know, you have a high starting point for self-awareness. And that is not only about having all the answers but rather understanding the journey of gathering the knowledge you need to thrive also helps you create the conditions to learn more about yourself.
How many people will not take the first step into something extraordinary? The vast majority. Why?
Because many will be afraid of how others will perceive them. Pure simple. Without the intention to oversimplify things, when you are aware of your own feelings, emotions, and what you must learn to thrive, you start setting the conditions to develop your OWN plan.
The courage to take the decision to reinvent oneself comes from understanding who you are and, most importantly, who you are not. Who you are not might put you in a vulnerable position, however when you can balance that with who you are and, especially, who you would like to become, you will develop the elements that allow you to take steps to change.
The courage comes not from eliminating the fear but from understanding those fears and focusing that energy where you want to go.
When you become self-aware, you will have a much better handle on your inner why and refocus your energy towards the goals you have. That extra power will undoubtedly be needed as you progress towards the goals you set.
For you to figure out the best way to get started understanding yourself, the best approach is to frame your reflection around what questions, NOT why questions. The "why questions" will drive a judgment, "what questions" will encourage understanding and, most important, ACTION.
So the right place to start is to frame good questions that will help you understand yourself and, most important, act on what you believe you should become.
Here are a few examples:
What are your personal values? What parts of your life are driven by them?
What do you want out of your life?
What higher purpose do you serve?
What are the outcomes in life that make you feel the most rewarded?
What are the activities that give you the most joy?
What are the themes that appear in my behaviors?
What is the impact of my actions on people around me?
We have a sense that our reinvention is a lonely quest. This could not be further from the truth. One person alone cannot cover every single aspect of reinventing themselves; you will always need help! Having the humility to understand that and focus your energy on the core of what you intend to do and leaving the rest to other people (or automate) is critical in finding the courage to move forward. That humility and vulnerability are also reflective of how much you understand yourself.
The more you set the example for others about the power of understanding oneself, the higher impact you will have on those surrounding you. That alone will fulfill the need to contribute that will then power the change you want to have.
Being self-aware will help you create the goals that are meaningful to you and your journey, the map that will help you get to the top of your mountain. By knowing more about yourself, you will be able to live a better, healthier, more prosperous, and engaging life.
Self-awareness equals a happier life, and the time to get started is now.