Most of us automatically assume we know ourselves. Our experiences, tied together with our memories, perceived tastes, fears, and hopes, form our ego and our idea of ourselves.
Still, most people have sides of them that remain unexplored given the tendency of humans to avoid deep thought and thorough honesty with themselves.
Unfortunately, we are the person we lie to the most sometimes.
For example, aside from generic job interview questions most people simply don’t have a good overview of their shortcomings.
Because let’s be honest, no one wants to think about what they’re not good at.
However, questions like ‘’What am I bad at?’’ or ‘’What am I good at?’’ can serve as a foundation for your self-development journey.
Questions like these don’t arise automatically or out of the blue.
We need to set the scene for these questions to be examined in a truthful and honest way.
And setting the scene for this kind of self-analysis employs a not-so-secret technique that is becoming increasingly rare and avoided, and that technique implies being alone with yourself.
Solitude And Its Benefits
Without great solitude, no serious work is possible.
Living in the age of informational abundance and the internet, being alone is hard to come by.
After all, all your friends are there simply a click away on this little magic rectangle you keep in your pocket, called a phone.
However, studies seem to show that voluntary solitude has been linked to a great number of benefits like lowered depressive symptoms, well-being, and greater life satisfaction.
Even throughout time and across different cultural segments, detaching oneself from the business of daily life and practicing voluntary solitude most often in nature has been shown to be a common form of anxiety relief and a tool one uses to get to know themselves better.
Ancient and not-so-ancient writings show that being alone facilitates inspiration and insight and serves to erase the never-ending inner chatter most of us have.
Once all those voices that delegate your daily life have been muffled, then you can begin to look inside yourself and find answers and guidance coming from the best of all places, your gut.
Confidence Comes With Knowing Yourself
Confidence comes with being able to spend time alone voluntarily and having a good time doing it.
Spend enough time alone, and you’ll find that you’re the most reliable person you know.
You’re available to yourself 24/7 from the day you are born to the day you die.
Can you then think of a more trustworthy person than yourself? Once you start trusting yourself, you inadvertently begin building greater levels of confidence.
The real type of confidence that’s gifted only to those who spend enough time getting to know themselves and their abilities.
Confidence can rarely be faked, and on the accounts that it can, it’s hardly sustainable.
And let’s be honest here – When you know it’s something that will serve you for the rest of your days, what’s the point of faking it, rather than building it from the ground up?
Knowing Yourself Is A Journey With No End
Human desires are like the horizon – you’re walking towards it but never getting any closer.
The same goes for the desire to know and improve yourself.
You may need to re-examine your shortcomings and your strengths once in a while.
Maybe you’ve improved on one point but weakened another.
This isn’t necessarily bad.
It only serves to show that you’re indeed further on your journey and making progress.
There is one thing to remember on this journey to knowing yourself – one never arrives.
Because personal development is a never-ending journey that lasts a life time.
We all have the power to change our lives and do amazing things. But we need to be honest with ourselves first in order for that to happen.
Introspection is a powerful tool, but it can also feel like an unnecessary burden when you’re trying to get through your day.
The key is finding the balance between introspection and action so that you can make changes without feeling overwhelmed by self-reflection.
It takes time, practice, and effort, but though that’s the case, you should remember that even small steps build momentum over time.