Self-awareness is the ability to look at oneself, usually emotional and thought processes, including beliefs, motivation, strengths, and weaknesses.

The ability to monitor ourselves from moment to moment is the key to understanding who we are and our relative place in the world.

Listed below are 5 traits of highly self-aware people

1. They practice active listening

The reality is that when most of us listen to someone, we are thinking about our reply before the individual finishes. Or, worse, we interrupt them before they are done speaking.

Self-aware people take an interest in what others have to say. We can’t build self-awareness if we don’t practice active listening. It’s an essential skill to cultivate for this and many other reasons.

Active listening means to concentrate, understand, respond, and then remember what is being said.

2. They are curious about how their minds work

Self-awareness requires paying attention to what is going on in our minds. We must understand how our brains work before any type of tinkering to awareness can happen.

As such, a highly self-aware person knows the inner-workings of their minds. They know how it acts and reacts, as well as its strengths and weaknesses. Indeed, this is the quintessential function of self-awareness.

To understand how your mind works, think about your predominant mental and emotional states, the positive and negative. How do you feel when accomplishing something? How can you get into that state of mind?

What things do you do that make you feel better? Worse? How can you get into those states where you feel better? Understanding and answering these questions will help you understand how your mind works better.

3. The appreciate feedback

One sign of outstanding self-awareness is seeking feedback. The problem, however, is that so many of us are far too sensitive, proud, or fearful, to willingly ask someone for their honest assessment.

Feedback is critical in any endeavor, including the betterment of our self-awareness.

4. They reflect and think about themselves and others

You cannot be self-aware if you are not attentive. The ability to look at yourself, your feelings and behaviors, is an essential element of self-awareness.

Extending these qualities to others through how you communicate, interact with, and respond to people is a vital element of self-awareness.

5. They do not practice self-awareness, they are self-aware

In the beginning phases of any journey, there is some effort involved. This includes the practice of self-awareness. There is a specific doing of self-awareness that happens as one acclimates to being self-aware.

It is important to know that, after a certain point, there is no conscious doing of self-awareness. As long as there’s continuous exertion, the skill of self-awareness continues to develop. More importantly, it demonstrates that there is critical work to be done.

Instead of focusing on the practice of self-awareness, aim to embody self-awareness and transform how you both see yourself and how others see you.


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