How often do we get to hear about the importance of self-awareness and self-reflection? All the time, I've even seen signposts in corporate offices talking about self-awareness and mindfulness. Who could have hoped 15 years ago that mindfulness and yoga would make their way into the mainstream human consciousness?
Yet how important are they for achieving a happier life?
Self-reflection is important but it doesn’t give us a happier life if we only use self-reflection and do nothing else.
Self-reflection is the first step, but we need to take the next step and then the next one to be able to achieve a happier life. Self-reflection on its own will not give us a happier life; quite the opposite it will make our life less happy because we will become acutely aware of the many dark sides of our personality.
Happier Self = Happier Life
We often think that if we change this or that toxic person or this or that toxic situation, we will become happier. Possibly we will, but for a short period of time. Negative attitudes, negative repetitive thought patterns and negative emotions make our life unhappy.
When we feel happy inside, we are much more tolerant to toxic people and much more resilient to toxic situations.
Self-Reflection = Knowledge = Power
It’s important to start reflecting on yourself - thought patterns, emotions and attitudes. We need to know and understand ourselves to know what needs to change to make us happier.
Yes, it’s also about accepting ourselves as we are, but I am not a big fan of this concept. Why accept weaknesses, fears and insecurities?
Power = Doing Something About It
Knowledge without action is a waste of time and a waste of life. Accepting ourselves is important, but as an interim step in the process of changing for the better. If we accept our weaknesses and negative aspects but don’t do anything about changing them, what’s the point?
Yes, we can acknowledge them, but then we should work hard to get rid of them. For good.
Changing Your Self = Changing Your Life
Let’s wake up and make a conscious choice to become better humans - as much as each of us understands this concept. If we start changing and fighting other people and life circumstances, we may win in the short term but will become exhausted and loose in the longer term. If we start changing our beliefs, mindset and actions, life will re-shape itself around us, much like puzzle pieces re-arranging themselves into a new - happier and better - picture.
I’m not saying we should not be doing anything at all in life, stop being assertive with toxic people, stop working, playing and living. All I’m saying if we put our focus of attention on changing our own limiting mindset, our life will follow and become happier.