We are all interested to know as to what is going on around, about things, people and situations. We love to know about our friends, colleagues (and foes 😜). The curiosity to know is natural.
If that is the case, Should we not know ourselves more and more clearly. Do we really know ourselves? If we immediately say yes, then we are wrong.
We are an ocean. We have immeasurable depths. We are unique individuals with so much to explore. The more we explore, the more we will be surprised.
Each one of us is a mystery, like an ocean. We have amazing possibilities and abilities. We have enormous potential, talents and capacities. We have ability to love, trust and follow higher values. We have ability to stand in tough situations without loosing our smile. We have capacity to fall down, yet get up and run. We have ability to stand a heart-break, yet not loose the ability to trust. In fact, we have all the energy and ability within us for achieving what we want and we also have the ability to smile at any failure, which in my opinion is a greater achievement.
Self awareness is the first step in self-acceptance and self-love. Finally it leads to what is called as "Self-Realization or Enlightenment".
How will we tap this?
We being unique individuals with specialties and limitations. No comparisons here. Diving deep into oneself is the first step in true spirituality. One who can dive deep within is the one who can go out and achieve, without loosing oneself. There are some who achieve a lot of things but in the process they loose themselves. They are shallow. They are like a skyscraper without a proper foundation. A holistic success is where you achieve things without loosing your core. Self-Awareness is the key.
We need to understand 4 aspects : The Known, Hidden, Blind and Unknown.
The known self is what you and others see in you. This is the part that you are able to freely discuss with others. Most of the times, you will agree with this view.
The Hidden Self is what you know about yourself but others don't. In this part you hide things that are very private about yourself. You do not want this information to be disclosed for the reasons of protection or you may be ashamed and feel vulnerable for having these faults and weaknesses. This equally applies to your good qualities that you don’t want to advertise to the world, may be due to modesty.
The Blind-Self is what we call blind spots.This is what you don’t see in yourself but others see in you. You might see yourself as an open-minded person when, in reality, people around you don’t agree. This area also works the other way. You might see yourself as a “dumb” person while others might consider you incredibly bright. Sometimes those around you might not tell you what they see because they fear offending you. It is in this area that people sometimes detect that what you say and what you do don’t match and sometimes body-language shows this mismatch.
The Unknown Self is the self that you cannot see, others can’t see it either. In this category there might be good and bad things that are out of the awareness of others and you. This might refer to untapped potential talents and skills that have yet to be explored by you, your family members, friends, colleagues and bosses.
In Psychology they call this categorization as Johari Window. This is mentioned in many Indian Philosophical texts as "Atma Vichara".
I invite you to the exploration of yourself.
Quieten your mind - Sit comfortably. Take a few minutes to practice deep breathing and centering your mind on the present moment before beginning this exercise. Diaphragmatic breathing or yogic breathing will help.
Tell yourself : I am going to be with myself and accept everything as they are. I am diving into the ocean of myself. I will get surprises. Sometimes dolphins and sometimes sharks. I will enjoy the process.
First week : Spend time with your known self.
Second week : Hidden self.
Third week : Blind self, the difficult one.
Fourth week : The unknown self.
Look within without any judgments. If judgments arise, look at them as well . See if you can smile while watching. After all it is time to rejoice.
Give time to yourself everyday. 20 mins twice daily. This will be your meditation. Do not practice more. Over doing is counter productive.
Enjoy being with yourself. Your body, emotions, thoughts, feelings and moods.
Learn to accept everything as they are.
Journal for 5 mins everyday.