How can any of us truly go through life without fully understanding who we are first? For us to understand the dynamics of ourselves and how we interact with others we must first get to know the many different aspects that make us up. We are so unique and different from one another that even if we feel that we have friends or family that are similar to us, they are remarkably and significantly independent from who we are.
When we actively learn about ourselves it seems that the chips just fall into place from then on. Most everything we do in life, we were either taught or we learned it through life experiences. We can be taught and/or learn things that are great or things that really shouldn’t be apart of our lifestyle anymore. As we grow up we gather new information and decide on different morals and standards that we choose to live by. Through the years we can adjust ourselves weed out old ways of thinking and living and replacing them with our new improved ideas.
The last 6 years has been all about self discovery. I quit many addictions, lost a lot of weight, went through a divorce, moved to a new state, changed my career path, got married, changed my lifestyle, and in the midst of it all I learned who I really was and all that I am made of. The good and bad instances in life are what truly define us, for me the bad was just as helpful as the good. Though divorces are hard, they are sometimes the best thing for your future self. I learned that I wanted to live a happy and fulfilling life so I made the healthiest change for myself. After my divorce I did things that brought me joy, working out, running, hiking, traveling, spending time with friends, acquiring new skills, learning, budgeting well, etc. In those times that I spent alone I realized who I truly was, there were no expectations on me. I was just myself.
My goal with this blog post is to encourage you to try some things that reveal more about yourself. When you know who you are it makes life so much easier, you don’t have to think about options as much because you have clear and direct path in which you know you are unwilling to stray from. You become strong and confident in who you are, your decisions, your morals, ethics and standards. Discovering yourself also sets boundaries with others, it creates rules such as what you will and won’t allow to be said or done to you. For example if your friends are takers and they walk all over you, you can learn about yourself enough to know that you don’t like that and won’t allow it in the future, which not only helps you feel good but it also helps your friends to understand more about you. This allows them the opportunity to value you by abiding by your boundaries. Good friends will respect your boundaries and it can cause you to grow even closer. Know that you are always changing, when you think that you have discovered yourself completely just take a look again. We never stop learning, adapting and growing. This is a never ending journey of self discovery. I would hate to die one day and know nothing about myself.
Learn your likes and dislikes. Food, movies, projects, activities, sports, careers, political views, budgeting, animals, books, scents, colors. This is the easiest and most wide ranged of things to consider. For example: In my previous marriage most dinners consisted of rice and bean type meals. I don’t actually enjoy eating that very often, I much prefer fruits, vegetables and a good cut of steak or a chicken breast for dinner. I did’t know that until I lived on my own though. Sometimes you will find that you get into a habit without making a conscious decision as to whether or not you enjoy something as simple as what you are eating each day.
Try doing things just for you. My husband and I are two peas in a pod. We have so many of the same interests it is unreal. There are a few random things that we are complete opposites on though. I love crafting and building or making things because it brings me joy. I had a lot of shirts that had sentimental value for me, I also wanting a good size colorful throw blanket. My husband said for me to just buy a throw blanket that I would like but instead I came up with a creative solution. I could keep these shirts I will never wear and at the same time fill the need to create and the need to have a throw blanket. I began sewing my sentimental shirts into a massive throw blanket. Yes it took lots of time and yes it would have been easier to buy a blanket but I wanted to try something out just for me.
Read a book about self discovery. I know that I have mentioned him before but John C. Maxwell writes some incredible books. My favorite to date is “The Success Journey” but there are so many more that are impactful. Others include: “The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth” “Developing the Leader Within You” “The Power of Your Potential” “Failing Forward” and “Intentional Living”.
Spend time alone just to ponder about who you are. I like to go on hikes or walks and just think. I think of things that I want to accomplish in life, the things that I want to do that day, how I can grow or change areas of my life that aren’t the way I want them, who I look up to and what makes them a person I admire. That will tell you a bunch about yourself.
Try the DISC test. I have learned a great deal about myself on the DISC personality test. You can find out what drives you, the way you communicate with others, what causes you to thrive, some areas of your personality to be aware of when interacting with others. You can do a personality test or a few different work place personality tests. Right now Dave Ramsey has a discount on the basic DISC test on his website which I just completed. It is highly accurate, I even laughed a few times reading about my character traits that could be considered flaws. Knowing myself as well as I do I am highly aware of my major strengths and weaknesses. Reading the DISC test I can learn how to cultivate my strengths and work on my weaknesses. My test only cost $16 and change with the DISC15 coupon code. Try it out, I am not affiliated in any way with this website or the code but over the years this has been the most in depth personality test I have taken. I have always been a high “D” but the ISC have all changed a bit over time. I would love to hear feedback if you decide to give it a try.