Self-Awareness: The First Step Towards Success




In school, people learn about math, science and technology and languages. We master these subjects because frequently, we were told to excel in these fields to succeed in our career path in the future. Because of the traditional view of success and academics, the present curriculum is neglecting essential aspects that should be integrated and not only taught in a particular subject but instead practice and promoted in school as well in the family and the community. At times, people are perfecting their skills in different expertise and pursuits that they fail to become experts in understanding themselves and their relationship with people around them. Experts recommend achieving a right amount of self-awareness to make success not only in your career but in different pursuits you have in life.  We have encountered the term, “self-awareness” from time to time, maybe through our books or psychology articles but fail to grasp the definition and various ways to embody the word.

“Awareness is the beginning of all change.”  That is according to Karla Helbert, LPC, E-RYT, C-IAYT. Self-awareness is having keen understanding and realization of one’s personality with the inclusion of your strengths and weaknesses, thoughts and beliefs, emotions and motivations. The term, first used in 1972, in the theory of objective self-awareness where it presented that if people focus their attention on their inner selves that will result in a comparison between current behaviors and mindsets with their general standards and core values.

To develop and increase one’s self-awareness, try these suggestions:

Examine Yourself Objectively

“We should examine the inextricable role that self-love plays in any and all human connection.” Clinical Psychologist and relationship expert Molly Gasbarrini, Ph.D. explains. Try seeing yourself in a new light without biases, prejudices and derogatory comments.  For most people, their most prominent critic is also themselves. Sadly, people become so critical of themselves that they fail to enjoy and live out their lives because of feelings of insecurity and unworthiness. Learn to accept that like any other human being, you are not perfect. You are bound to make mistakes and encounter trials and failures along the way.

  • Identify your present understanding of things that need improvement and areas that you are good at.
  • Reflect on your accomplishments and achievements you are proud of.
  • Think back to your childhood: What made you happy then? What changes happen and what had remained?
  • Ask the opinion of trusted confidants on how you are as a person and what they feel you need to work on. Take their responses as positive criticisms.




Jot Down Your Plans, Goals, And Priorities

Write down everything but prioritize your goals and set the plan on how to achieve such. It is wise to break it down into workable step by step process. This way it will keep you from deviating from the foreseeable future dreams.


Daily Habit: Reflection

This practice is simple but would also require patience and commitment. It will involve setting aside time for meditation. Meditation just sounds intimidating, but it is in fact, uncomplicated. It can be done by merely, closing your eyes and go over your thoughts.  “Meditation is not just relaxing, but to be keenly aware of the present moment while not interfering with mental activities that revolve around our little self.” Andrea F. Polard, PsyD said. Allot at least 30 minutes to one hour each day, find yourself a quiet room, listen to meditative music, and focus on your breathing. It is said that it works best when accompanied by journal writing.