Here are ten ways to live more meaningfully, and develop your self-awareness at the same time:
When you have self-awareness, you’re able to live a joyful life and genuinely get along with yourself and others. It’s easy to spot people who aren’t happy because they do things like:
- Put other people down.
- Compete with others to boost their own self-image.
- Say negative things.
- Look stressed out or ill at ease.
- Dedicate their lives to causes that hurt people.
- Defend reprehensible behaviors.
- Have a history of poor relationships.
- Say one thing and do another.
- Live in fear.
- Do what other people tell them to do.
- Lack self-awareness.
- Say they’re happy.
The key to being truly happy in life is to be the person you are at your core, the real you. One of the reasons I love connecting with people who value self-awareness is because their energy comes from a place of introspection, genuineness, creativity, and abundance.
What makes you happy?
When you possess self-awareness, you’re able to live in harmony with your feelings. A common deathbed regret is that people wish they had dealt with their feelings instead of trying to ignore or cover them up. It’s vital to feel your feelings so you can live a healthy, happy life. When you don’t experience your feelings, you cut off a huge part of who you are. We are all feeling beings with a wide range of emotions.
Much damage has been done to people by societal norms that minimize feelings but what could be more normal than acknowledging what you feel inside? If you’re sad, you’re sad. If you’re scared, you’re scared. If you’re happy, you’re happy. There’s no mystery to feelings, they’re just natural states of being that your brain and body produce.
My years of helping people build self-awareness have taught me that feelings have to be recognized and dealt with, you can never ignore them. That sadness you feel will never completely go away unless you deal with it. Feelings are so important to your well-being that you literally can’t live a truly happy life unless you understand how to manage them positively.
How can you begin feeling your feelings? Each time one comes up, acknowledge it. Simply realize that, no matter how uncomfortable they may be, you can handle them and they are a natural part of you. The key to living a happy life is to gradually heal the difficult feelings and emphasize the positive ones.
What advice do you have on how to feel your feelings?
A lot of people talk about living with no regrets and then go out and do stuff that is purely physical and doesn’t really help them grow as human beings. As you build your self-awareness, you’ll realize that physical pursuits are not the things that really matter in life, what people actually regret are things like:
- Not having deep relationships with others.
- Not saying, “I Love You,” more often to their loved ones.
- Not pursuing their dreams.
- Not having the courage to live life as themselves.
- Not taking the time to work on the issues that held them back in life.
- Not admitting mistakes.
- Not being in touch with their emotions.
- Not treating themselves and others well.
- Not making the world a better place.
- Not making life easier for others.
- Not behaving with kindness and empathy toward all people.
- Not letting go of fear.
You’ll notice that these types of regrets don’t have anything to do with living recklessly or being hooked on adrenaline, they refer to the quiet moments when we have to face who we are as people and decide whether we did everything in our power to live meaningfully.
Self-awareness allows you to live on a deeper level, where you understand what really matters in life rather than trying to fill yourself up with temporary placebos. How will you avoid regrets in your life?
Having self-awareness means that you understand what makes you tick and you’re willing to work on improving yourself. A lot of people spend their entire lives avoiding going deeper into what makes them think and behave the way they do. The irony is that you can’t live a truly authentic and fulfilling life unless you deal with the difficult issues inside you. In general, the more you want to avoid something the more attention it merits.
If you chronically avoid thorny issues you do yourself a disservice because you never get past them, which means you function day to day as if you were carrying a heavy piece of luggage or baggage. The key to living a great life is to heal your hurts. It may be unpleasant at first, but when you work past them you’ll experience life at its most satisfying.
The great thing about possessing self-awareness is that you’re able to look at all the things that make you the person you are, warts and all, and are open to fearlessly examining your innermost self. The more you know yourself, the happier you’ll be. What do you think about going deeper?