Great Self-Awareness Examples & Activities (2020)
If you’re here for self-awareness examples and self-awareness activities, you’re in the right place. (If you’d like to jump straight to the self-awareness examples, click here, otherwise, read on…)
Perhaps most of us are familiar or at least at some point have heard the term “self-awareness.”
Simply put, self-awareness is the practice of being aware of the self.
But what exactly does being aware of ourselves mean? Aren’t we already aware of ourselves? When did we stop being aware? How do we enhance self-awareness?
Self-awareness goes beyond being aware that we ARE or that we exist. It means paying close attention to anything that has to do with our existence; every move we make, every thought we have, every feeling we experience, every breath we take…
In general, people have not stopped being aware. But most of us are certainly not paying enough attention to the practice of self-awareness as we could.
That is why we thought it would be important to give you some great self-awareness examples and self-awareness activities if you’d like to improve these skills.
What is the importance of practicing self-awareness?
Through the practice of self-awareness, we embark on a process of self-analysis. This process allows us to be aware of and to better understand our actions. Furthermore, when we analyze our actions we are more likely to understand them better and to detect their possible causes.
By gaining self-awareness we could be better prepared to detect, analyze, and understand our behavioral patterns.
“When I discover who I am, I’ll be free.” – Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man
But let’s explain what behavioral patterns are…
Behavioral patterns are sets of repetitive reactions we have unconsciously exercised throughout our lives when dealing with specific situations. They could be directly related to each individual’s past experiences and psychological traumas.
We can all remember instances in our past in which we wish we had reacted differently. The sudden, unfortunate reactions we regret were most likely caused by previously developed behavioral patterns or limiting beliefs.
These reactions are reflections of how we got accustomed to utilizing certain characteristics of our personalities to instinctively respond to demanding situations.
Another example of this includes people who are constantly complaining about how everything seems to go wrong with their lives. Generally speaking, these types of people are unaware of their actions.
Their own inappropriate reactions to challenging situations are the cause of the overwhelming, stressful situations they complain about.
As previously suggested, developing self-awareness allows us to detect personal behavioral patterns that have gotten us into trouble, understand their causes and their consequences. We could hopefully learn enough from the analysis and consequently, achieve an improvement in our future behaviors.
“The only person who can pull me down is myself, and I'm not going to let myself pull me down anymore.” – C. JoyBell C.
Self-Awareness Examples in Our Relationships and Social Life
Is self-awareness applicable to every aspect of our lives?
There are different examples of how self-awareness can be applied to different aspects of our lives.
We discussed self-awareness with regards to our relationship with ourselves, but socializing is also an important aspect of our lives; therefore, we should be handling these social interactions with special care.
Self-awareness examples and family
- Being aware of your family dynamics and how it relates to you.
- Being aware of patterns that you continue to take part in.
- Being aware of your past actions between you and your loved ones and how that might be effecting your current relationship.
- Being aware of certain vocabulary around important challenges to your family and how you deal with conflict within your family.
Do these self-awareness examples sound familiar? They should be!
Family relationships are one of the most challenging types of relationships…
We do not get to select our relatives and yet many of us find ourselves dealing with them on a daily basis. Self-awareness could come handy when interacting with family members.
Once we know what triggers certain emotions and reactions, we can communicate these aspects of our personality to our family members. This could improve our interactions with them. By knowing which “buttons should not be pressed”, they could assist in how both sides interact.
In an ideal world, every member of our family would take part in self-awareness activities, and then all of us could live happily ever after.
But until this becomes a reality, we should consider doing our best to implement self-awareness. Especially since it represents an opportunity to take advantage of its benefits when dealing with the daily challenges of family interactions.
Self-awareness examples in marriage and partnership
- Being aware of what we want from a relationship
- Being aware of your actions in your relationship. Realizing that your actions have the chance to have a positive or negative impact on your partner.
- Being aware of your insecurities. Uncovering your feelings of jealousy, trust, or other issues that might be holding your relationship back from reaching a healthy and honest future.
- Being aware of your own happiness. Understanding that each person can be supportive, but can never be responsible for the other person’s happiness.
- Being aware of your goals, desires, and motivations. And realizing that sometimes that might be different than your partners.
When it comes to finding a potential partner, everybody seems to be ready to jump on the first opportunity that arises.
It is perhaps this rush that causes many individuals to end up in “the wrong relationship.”
So make sure to take a good look at yourself beforehand.
It is common to get involved in a relationship based merely on physical attraction. Such relationships tend to either not last long or become the cause of unhappiness.
Besides being aware of who we are, we must also be aware of what we want from a relationship. By knowing this, we would be more likely to begin a well-founded relationship.
“At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.” – Lao Tzu
Being part of a marriage or a partnership comes with challenges that we could find to be even more demanding.
On one hand, it is true that we would be sharing our life with a person we chose and like. On the other hand, we will have to learn to share with this person every aspect of our personality, from those that we are very proud of to those that we constantly try to hide from the world.
Undoubtedly, this kind of relationship requires to be handled with extreme care. And undoubtedly, it could greatly benefit from the practice of self-awareness by the individuals involved.
Self-awareness examples in social and professional settings
- Being aware of what you like to do.
- Being aware of what kind of people you like to be around.
- Being aware of the activities that bring you joy.
- Being aware of the way you like to make decisions.
- Being aware of the way you like to work.
- Being aware of how you approach conflict.
- Being aware of how you like to manage a team.
When it comes to self-awareness examples for social and professional settings, it’s all about how you interact with people that aren’t family.
And the things about yourself that you have to know when you are creating those bonds in life or inside the workplace.
The same principles we have been discussing apply to every case. Through enhanced self-awareness, we could increase our likelihood to control our moods, exercise better decision-making, and improve the quality of our communication with others.
Can you think of an area of your life where having healthy self-awareness could have a positive impact?
Self-Awareness Activities and Why?
What is the very best self-awareness activity to take part in?
It might be simpler than you think…
We could put together a long list of ways in which we could practice self-awareness. But, we can also safely state that the most important activity when trying to implementing self-awareness is asking “why?.”
Moreover, it can be applied to any situation in life…
What are some self-awareness strategies? How can I maintain a constant state of self-awareness? Is it even possible?
When we take the time to ask ourselves “why?”—why do we think, feel, or act in a certain way?
We increase our chances to have adequate behaviors for specific scenarios in our life.
This type of constructive questioning is imperative to develop our self-awareness skills. We should simply focus on remembering to always ask “why?”
With practice, we would not have to remember it and our responses to the question could become more inclusive of a variety of perspectives. By doing so, we would be on our way to becoming more empathetic, open-minded individuals.
“It takes courage…to endure the sharp pains of self-discovery rather than choose to take the dull pain of unconsciousness that would last the rest of our lives.” – Marianne Williamson, A Return to Love: Reflecitons on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles”
As with any other skill, mastering the practice of self-awareness requires the willingness to do it, constant practice, and discipline. These requirements may sound overwhelming for some of us, but they are actually not that difficult to achieve.
At this point of the reading, we have a better understanding of what self-awareness is and how it plays an important role in our lives. But we still need to figure out how exactly each of us can make self-awareness part of our daily routines. How can we achieve this goal? How can we enhance self-awareness?
Taking part in Facilitated Discussion
We are a bit biased here at Aristotle’s Cafe, because we have been holding free, small group discussions for over a decade.
We’ve seen the power this has to change people’s lives for the better…
If you’d like to take part in one, please send us a message at [email protected]
If you want to have a look at the questions we’ve asked over the years, you can check out our 150+ icebreaker questions for amazing small group discussion.
Self-Awareness Activities that force you to train with your brain
Naturally, our brains are capable of constantly producing a wide variety of thoughts. These thoughts could be part of a common theme, caused by a certain current mood or even a psychological trauma from our past.
In this way, we could find ourselves accidentally following a self-damaging pattern of thoughts. There are certain aspects of our personalities or shameful events from our past that we dislike and have not been able to address and resolve.
In this case, our brains would most likely intensify the magnitude of such topics and flood our heads with related, negative thoughts. These thoughts are nothing but the display of our brain’s skill to process information and produce thoughts.
The reality is that our brains produce all sorts of thoughts, ranging from very positive ones to very negative ones. Poor management of these overwhelming collections of thoughts could lead us to fall into a negative pattern.
We will always have all types of thoughts, there is no way out of it. But we could consider not allowing those thoughts to determine who we are.
“I am who I am; no more, no less.” – Terry Goodkind, Wizard’s First Rule
Meditation can be defined as the act of getting in touch with our inner self to better understand our reality.
Meditation is a great way to enhance self-awareness because it allows us to pay attention to our body by focusing on our mind. It is a great tool when dealing with our thoughts. By learning how to properly breathe and pay attention to our bodies, we could become incrementally skilled at managing our thoughts.
Self-Awareness Activities that challenge you to appreciate sadness
It seems different factors throughout history have convinced the majority of us to believe sadness is a negative feeling. However, we could argue that sadness is nothing else but a natural response. A display of our natural capacity to be empathetic towards living beings’ suffering, either ours or someone else’s.
So far, we could deduce that the life we are living reflects how we have decided to react to situations. Equally, our perspective of life reflects how we decide to think of and feel about specific events. By rethinking our definition of sadness, we could start to experience it differently and even benefiting from it.
But how can anyone benefit from sadness?
We are not suggesting choosing to be sad as a way of living.
Instead, we should consider finding ways to benefit from experiencing sadness. We cannot avoid sadness, so why not try to benefit from it?
In many cases, there is a certain amount of sadness related to our past. Significantly sad events that remained with us in the form of scarring memories.
It could be beneficial to revisit events in our memory and analyze them from the perspective of our current self.
Consequently, we will notice that those situations were really not as terrible as we thought. Perhaps even not at all as we originally perceived them. Through this analysis, we could provide ourselves with much-needed psychological healing.
Self-Awareness Activities that make you think of others as yourself
Self-awareness does not stop with the analysis of ourselves. It is important to know who we are.
But it is equally important to know who surrounds us and how we can better interact with them.
When we analyze people around us, we could notice factors that are determining their behavior. Everybody’s reactions are affected by our past experiences and behavioral patterns.
Practicing a constructive analysis of the people we interact with could allow us to be more empathetic towards them. It would allows us to remember they are simply a different version of ourselves.
Self-Awareness Activities that teach you to be critical of your criticism
When interacting with others we should be very critical of our criticism.
We might find ourselves expressing discomfort about other people’s actions.
But this could not necessarily mean that their actions are in fact what we are upset about. Instead, they could be making us uncomfortable because they are actions we tend to shamefully practice.
We should be aware that we might not be criticizing other people, but ourselves. Therefore, it is very important to take the time to analyze every situation while avoiding impulsive reactions.
Making an effort to look at every situation from different perspectives is imperative.
“Whenever you are about to find fault with someone, ask yourself the following question: What fault of mine most nearly resembles the one I am about to criticize?” – Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
Additionally, we should consider asking for criticism from the people who care about us. People close to us know us well enough to be able to point at the aspects of our personality that seem to complicate our interactions with others.
This type of constructive criticism could ground our feet. Thus teaching us more about who we really are, and who we should aim to be.
The same way no one can ever be knowledgeable at everything, no one can ever be right about everything.
Realizing not every aspect of our personality is already the way it could be, could help us to analytically grow. It could also change our way of thinking.
As the ever-evolving beings we are, evolving our way of thinking should be understood as a vital aspect of growth.
Updating our beliefs and principles to match current times, as well as using this updated approach to life, could greatly improve our daily decision-making process.
Discovering the world might be one of the greatest self-awareness activities
Noted, self-awareness includes the self and the people around us. Yes, but we should consider going even further…
The world serves as the home to an unimaginable number of different cultures spread across the different latitudes.
Today, we live in a global society. The traveling of people around the globe is more and more common. Some people are even relocating to different countries or even different continents.
All this movement has increased our interaction with different cultures even if we never left our hometown. This is a valuable opportunity to further our understanding of the whole.
Thus, challenge yourself to observe and learn from members of different cultures. Study their behaviors, try to relate to them and appreciate being exposed to such an enriching experience.
Experiencing new perspectives is a very refreshing and enriching cognitive process…
Think of children, they always seem to be excited while learning new things.
As adults, we should seek to expose ourselves to new experiences. This could be learning from other cultures or learning a new skill.
The idea is to get out of our comfort zone and force ourselves to acquire freshler approaches to new challenges. Evolving into the type of human the current era calls for.
“Anyone who knows me, should learn to know me again; For I am like the Moon, you will see me with a new face everyday.” – Rumi
Considering the benefits of self-awareness, why do you think someone would not be interested in practicing it? Do you consider yourself a self-aware person? Do you think you could expand your self-awareness?
Do you have any great self-awareness examples or activities that we should add?
We hope the present article increased your understanding of self-awareness. As always, we invite you to share your opinion with us in the comment section, as well as any other questions that may have emerged from your reading of this article.