How do you to get to know yourself? | Part 2
“I FIND, IN GENERAL, PEOPLE HAVE VERY LITTLE UNDERSTANDING OF WHO THEY ARE, AND BY LACKING THIS UNDERSTANDING ONE HAS TO TURN A BLIND EYE TO SO MUCH OF ONESELF TO JUST GET THROUGH LIFE.”
If you’re wondering what I mean when I refer to “getting to know yourself” or why I think it’s important to get to know yourself…
By getting down to the foundation of YOU, you’re able to build a happy life. Or at least, that’s what I’ve come to find. The more my life reflects my real interests, values, and temperament, the happier I become and the more I get. By writing this, I hope I can make you realize that you can truly get anything you want when you choose to find out who you really are, by knowing, respecting and honoring your rare individuality.
So, how do you get to know yourself?
Honestly? There's no set way.
But the biggest part of getting to know yourself involves getting familiar with your values. What’s important to you? What’s not? What feels morally wrong to you? What do you look for in other people? What traits do you admire? What’s your favorite thing about yourself? What’s your least favorite?
Now, it’s time to get some perspective. Put your phone away for a second, turn on some music, take a breath and simply sit with yourself. Get a journal, think about things and write them down, answer the questions above (by writing them down or just thinking about them). There’s no right or wrong way to “get to know yourself”, and everything I’ve learned (all mentioned below) are simply tools that have helped me as I navigate my journey. So although I can’t tell you how to do it, I can share little glimpses into the practices I’m doing to keep me on this path.
I started by exploring all that makes me, well me. Honestly, I treated myself the way I use to treat a subject at school and by doing so, I became ravenous for more and more.
I threw myself into finding my Human Design, my birth chart, my archetype, my love language, my Ayurvedic dosha, my Myers-Briggs personality type, you name it I’ve gone through it.
With all this information, the next step is to simplify by looking for similarities (because I can’t say I believe in a single one). So find common threads throughout to simplify and reduce the overwhelm.
For example: if you were to look at my human design (I'm a generator), my star sign (Aquarius), my personality type (INFJ) all of them will tell you I'm stubborn, despise authority, am a rebel at heart and will forever advocate for empathy and compassion wherever possible. I also know that I was born to help others by sharing what works and what doesn’t based on MY own experiences and experimentation (which basically sums up how I came to writing this piece)
This is but a short example and you'll soon come to find that with each new discovery comes pages of insight, guides and advice on how to best live your life. All you have to do is pick out the ones that are similar across the board. Get to know your strengths and weaknesses, get to know what you’re good at and where you’re better off reaching out to someone for help. And own all of it as a part of your authentic self and experience. Because when you're familiar with your traits, good and bad, you can truly start living your life according to YOU.
After you’ve gotten a bit more familiar with everything that makes you, well you, the next step is to implement everything you’ve learned by listening to your intuition and your body (it sounds so simple, but you'd be surprised how out of tune we tend to be).
Start by getting quiet and get comfortable with simply being by yourself. The main aim of this is to get to know your intuition (a.k.a. that little voice inside) and in case you don’t know what he/she sounds like, it’s time you meet him/her! I like to go for long walks (without music or earphones), make a cup of coffee or tea and sip on that without any distractions, take a few minutes before bed to just lay there with my thoughts - really listening to them- or just simply pause a couple of times throughout the day to check-in, take a few breaths and then continue.
Once a day (whenever suits you best) take out a journal and write down 5-or-so things you want to do that day and 5-or-so things you have to do that day OR (if you carve out some time in the evening) write down 5 things that you achieved that day and 5 things that you were grateful for. This will help loads with getting to know what you actually LIKE doing or what you value in each day (then keep on adding those things to every day).
Follow your gut, even when you don't know where it’s leading. Ever had that "damn, I should've listened to my gut"- feeling? Yup, we all have. So start listening!
Carve out time for new experiences (and don't be afraid to do them alone!). Grab a coffee at that new spot that you've been eyeing for a while, go to your local library (did you even know those still existed?) or go for a walk in an unexplored part of your neigbourhood.
Follow some journal prompts like THESE and answer them on a piece of paper (or in your head). At first you might think it’s silly, but it’ll take you back to you.
And even if none of the above appeals to you, all I want you to take from this is to find a way (any way) that allows you to spend time with yourself without distractions (yes, that includes a phone, or a book, or Netflix) and simple be with your thoughts, listening.
Like I said, there really is no right or wrong way, I’m just sharing the ways which helped me peel back the layers of myself. If you’re wanting to explore those ways further you can click on any one of the following:
Let me know in the comments if you’ve delved into any of the above mentioned (or others!) I’d love to know how you’re working on getting to know you.