Being self-aware is one of the most essential virtues we can practice. It is the key to strong emotional intelligence. Our self-awareness informs us on how we are doing as leaders. Where we need to strengthen ourselves, how we can be better than we are and requires us being completely honest with ourselves. Being willing to evaluate ourselves daily to determine if we are on track with where we want to be is essential to maximizing our leadership.
You may have heard the story of the man who came to work every day complaining that he always had baloney sandwiches in his lunch. This day he was particularly perturbed, and his anger was escalating rapidly as he was complaining. His friend, seeking, to reduce his anger suggested that he simply tell his wife not to pack baloney sandwiches anymore. The man replied, why are you bringing my wife into this, I pack my own lunches.
Clearly, this man was not self-aware. Each of us needs to strive to improve our self-awareness.
Here are three things you can do to improve your self-awareness
- Evaluate yourself – simply taking the time to think about how you are living, both positively and negatively helps improve your awareness.
- Pay attention to your virtues, are you living the way you desire to live? Remember character is perishable. Draw the line in the sand now and never cross it. Practice living virtuously.
- Seek Feedback – ask those closest to you for feedback, this is risky and requires vulnerability, but pays dividends for your ability to know how you can grow yourself.
John Maxwell coined this line … “you need to know yourself, to grow yourself”.
Take the time to get to know yourself today and every day. Your ability to lead will accelerate in direct proportion to your ability to know yourself well.