No better time than now to do some reflecting. My less than 24-hour breakup along with the issues that have been raised in the last two weeks at my place of employment have caused me to look at myself and reflect, why do I find myself in these unfortunate situations, what am I supposed to learn? In class, today Johari’s Window was introduced by my professor. He conducted a class activity to help us understand the importance of self-reflection as an administrator. There are four domains that identify the level of self-awareness.
Information about yourself that you and others know
Information you don’t know but others know about you
Information you know about yourself but don’t want others to know
Information about yourself that neither you or others know.
I was asked to write down 10 adjectives about my public self. I came up with
Impatient, Sensitive, Versatile, Family-oriented, Honest, Hardworking, Caring, Reflective, and Cooperative.
Without sharing what I wrote down, my classmates and professor listed adjectives on a post-it, that they believed described me.
Honest, Humble, Self-reflective, Proactive, Caring, Compassionate, Observant, Quiet, Even-tempered, Self-conscious, Introverted, I wear my heart on my sleeve.
I called my best-friend on the phone and asked her to share her thoughts
Determined, Dedicated, Independent, Confident, Classy, Boss Chick. —– Bitchy
Self-reflection is important whether at the work place or in your personal life. To become a master of yourself, you must be aware of who you are and be open to critique. My peers had many admirable things to say about me, but I wondered if they were being completely honest. On the phone, after my best friend shared adjectives she thought reflected me, I said “sis, tell me something about myself that I can work on, I won’t take offense to it.” Her response was “Bitchy”.
It can difficult to tell someone about themselves that isn’t so favorable, because it is possible that it may ruin relationships. A person must be ready to receive this information. I had a talk with myself before reading the post-its. I told myself that anything that is said is coming from a good place and it leaves the opportunity for growth. Self-awareness can help you to manage your emotions as well as your thoughts. Understanding the way, you think and what you focus your thoughts on attributes to attaining success.
Knowing your qualities can help you with your personal development. Focusing on those faults in a productive manner and pushing yourself to engage in new activities especially those that may fall outside of your comfort zone will help you to grow as an individual. You should be open to accepting your flaws and have a desire to become a better version of yourself for this to even begin to work. Many of us are content with our flaws. I am myself am, in some instances; but if it’s holding us back from becoming the person we want to be then we should do better. Even if it is working for us now, we need to challenge ourselves. There is a possibility that we will lose out on opportunities if we are not reflective and willing to do better. Don’t be the one to hold yourself back.
Understanding your struggles can also make you a team player. Allow those adjectives to work for you. I wouldn’t encourage you to put all your faults on the table, because some people unfortunately are judgmental and may change their perception of you, but do share what you think may have a strong impact on collaboration and discuss ways in which you may need support or resources to improve. Each year we are expected to fill out a co-teaching agreement. Each time we do, I am totally upfront with my strengths and weaknesses because I want the best for my students. It’s not a time for me to pretend to know it all, but the perfect opportunity for growth; to assist and receive the necessary support from my team so that I too can contribute to the success of our scholars.
When you are aware of yourself it can help you to maneuver through personal relationships. Relationships are going to face challenges. When you understand who you are you can manage emotions and your behavior better and also understand the behaviors of others, making it easier to influence a positive solution. Last night, I had a conversation with my boyfriend and we weren’t in agreeance with the behaviors he demonstrated that were impacting our relationship. Over the past few months I have worked hard to understand this person. I paid close attention to his actions and not what he said. I noticed some patterns of inconsistencies that caused major concerns. I really enjoy spending time with him but some issues were raised that needed to be addressed. I had to reflect on myself and remind myself of my needs. When we’re in relationships sometimes we get so caught up and comfortable that we don’t remember those things. I thought about my future self and realized that the relationship would not support me in getting there. I don’t believe it is my job nor should it be anyone’s job to try to change anyone they are dating. I wouldn’t appreciate if anyone did that to me either. Persuading me to decide, is totally different from telling me what to do. I do not like to be told what to do. Yes, I’ve known this about myself for some time and so do the people around me, it’s my Public Self. Being aware of myself, and taking the time to get to know him allowed me the chance to determine whether he was right for me and helped me to make the best decision, which was to remove myself from the relationship. It didn’t support my needs and was taking away from the woman I am becoming. I spoke with my boyfriend and explained in detail the reasoning behind my decision and he understood. I would say that looking back, I have become confident with expressing my feelings and speaking up even in uncomfortable situations. Staying silent, was partially due to the fear of being alone and having to start over. Starting over was too much work, so I would settle.
My journey requires me to put my faith in God and to work on myself, daily. When I set personal goals it’s not only to please myself but to please God. So far with this practice, I have witnessed change. On the daily, I pray and I remind myself of where I want to be. Doors have opened for me where I haven’t expected them to. It is a blessing. One practice that has helped me to do better is to set what I call a mindful reminder. The reminder is set for four times a day. When the reminder goes off, I sit in silence for one minute and think about what I want, which for me ultimately, is peace.
As you begin to self-respect and experience new things pay attention. Write down the new developments. If you learn something new about yourself be ready to work with it. Manage it and don’t allow it to control you or stop you from being great. I dare you to set a goal for yourself and work toward it for one month. Start small. Choose an unfavorable adjective that was used to describe you that you would like to improve. Write down the steps it will take for you to achieve that goal. Write down some obstacles you may face and try to think of some ways to get around or overcome those obstacles. Are there any resources you need to achieve this goal? Prepare yourself. Reach out to those who are willing to support you. Let them know about your goal, if necessary. Set your alarm for three times a day, for one month to remind you of this goal.
Create the person you want to be. Take the time to get to know yourself. Be receptive to information. Be ready for the new opportunities you will be presented with.
Let Your Blind Self Become Your Public Self… Work!