Why Self Awareness Is So Important
I was thinking recently…
No advice is perfect advice.
‘What do you mean? The advice I give is great! I listen extra hard to others.’
Still, no advice is the perfect advice.
Because when we give advice, we give it from our lens.
However, we do not fully know the other person’s experiences/desires.
What may be great advice for us may be awful advice for someone else.
I learned this when a public speaking coach of mine said that I should ONLY talk about public speaking and nothing more.
He talked about the importance of ‘niching down.’
I listened for a few days.
But after some time, I felt stiff as fuck.
That’s when I realized, I don’t like niching down.
I prefer to have a theme of communication skills to my content rather than the niche of public speaking alone.
This speaking mentor meant well.
However, just because the advice worked for him didn’t mean that it would work for me.
‘What is key for taking in information?’
In this article, we will learn why self-awareness is important and why it is the staple of emotional intelligence.
The Components of EQ and Communication
The 5 components of emotional intelligence are:
- Emotional regulation
- Social skills
The 5 types of communication out there are:
- Communication with thy self – Self-Awareness
- One on one communication – Conversation
- Many to many communication – Group Interaction
- One to many communication – Public Speaking
- Human to machine communication – Media
What’s the similarity between emotional intelligence and communication skills?
Without self-awareness, all information seems like good information.
Without self-awareness, toxicity seems like love.
And without self-awareness, we have no clue if we are the toxic one.
What is Self-Awareness?
There are multiple ways of defining self-awareness.
But I want a practical dentition that leaves little room for doubt.
My view of self-awareness is to turn yourself into a smartphone.
You heard me correctly.
I have a smartphone.
It’s showing me a scary YouTube video.
Do I say:
-I am the smartphone that’s showing the scary YouTube video.
‘No, that would be silly.’
Why would it be silly?
‘Because you own the smartphone, but you are not the smartphone.’
Correct, I should have viewed the phone as an object.
Similarly, the purpose of self-awareness is to view ourselves as an object.
Rather than identifying with our thoughts and body…
‘I have a mind and body.’
Do you feel something?
If you observe closely, you’ll feel strong sensations in your body.
This is you turning yourself into a smartphone.
Self-Awareness & Information Processing
You ever had that moment when you were aimlessly surfing the internet?
‘Too many times to count.’
How much time did you waste?
‘Um… I’d rather not say that number out loud lol.’
Gotcha. Just make a mental note.
When you enter the internet without intent, you have your time wasted.
When you enter the real world without self-awareness, you have your time wasted.
Humans are information processing systems.
The reticular activating system is the brain stem with a bunch of neurons that process which information is important for us.
When an information system is overloaded, it starts to act unpredictably.
With a smartphone, too much information causes it to crash.
With a human, too much information causes emotional outbursts.
3 Ways to Build Self Awareness
In the lens of self-awareness, we can use all emotions to our advantage.
Emotional intelligence is NOT about having a negative perception of dark emotions and a positive perception of light emotions.
Instead, it’s about viewing all emotions as the same.
That’s going to require some training.
So, the first on the list is…
1. Embrace Darkness
Show me a guy who hasn’t ever hit rock bottom and I’ll show you a guy who hasn’t been tested.
If we are looking to build self-awareness, dark moments are the best.
Electrical circuits need to be grounded for the electricity to flow through.
Humans need to be humbled for understanding to flow through.
This isn’t to say that you willingly get in a car accident to build your self-awareness skills.
Instead, pursue a goal (a grand goal).
And this will invite great problems which challenge the internal world like none other.
‘Hey, I see what you put in the parenthesis! Why’d you put a grand goal for?’
Ah… you caught me.
2. A Grand Goal
A spectacular goal that puts you in awe leads to internal changes.
That’s correct buddy boiii..
The larger the external goal, the bigger the internal transformation.
That’s one of the core ideas in the Level Up Mentality book.
Setting a grand goal and working on it sharpens the reticular activating system.
Rather than taking in all information like a bozo, now you have a target in mind.
3. Taking Criticism
I’ve been weird with this.
If I know someone’s a hater, then the criticism rolls right off my back.
But if it’s a person I respect who criticizes me, it stings more.
The sting is great.
The reason why it’s great is because stinging sensations build self-awareness.
I don’t respect all people (snakes, robbers, and plagiarists).
So, if the person I respect is criticizing me, they must have the right intent from the information at hand.
Guess, I’ll build my self-awareness.
Plus, the hater.
They are great with the right perspective.
They have no allegiance to you.
So, they will bring insights to your deficiencies that others were too scared to share.
Take control of haters by using them to build further self-awareness.
Control Emotions, Control Life
A mature mind is a strong mind.
It’s difficult to rattle this kind of mind.
My definition of thick skin is when the internal world is stronger than the external world.
When the internal is stronger than the external, that’s when chaos becomes play.
Looking to further build your emotional intelligence?
Then be sure to grab a copy of the Modern Day Polymath.
This book will teach you how to:
- Learn faster.
- Build better habits.
- Find quality information.
- Use all emotions to your advantage.
And much more!