We hear our experts offer the advice often: we must know ourselves… first. But how, exactly, do we accomplish that? Here are seven questions to start.
—This article was originally published by our friends at elephant journal; we’re republishing (with permission!) because we love it… and them. Enjoy.—
A journey of self-discovery is also one of self-enquiry, so the more information we gather about ourselves, the clearer we become about who we are.
When we are looking for a partner, we ask everything about them—their likes and dislikes.
We want to know every detail—what excites them, what puts a smile on their face, what makes them tick. We are curious about the books they read and which movies they watch. We crave acquainting ourselves with everything that makes them who they are.
However, when it comes to ourselves, we presume we know it all, without dedicating enough time and effort to research ourselves. We allow the world to judge us and apply titles that don’t describe our true selves. We end up being tagged and isolated in a compartment that stops us from finding out our true aspirations.
What were we like when we were growing up?
What interests or practices do we completely lose ourselves in?
What are our strengths and weaknesses?
And most importantly, what are our aspirations—how do we imagine our lives?
Often, the quickest way we get to know ourselves is when we face a traumatic situation, when our backs are against the wall or when we are thrown into the deep end at a new job. Our ego is cast aside as we are forced to quickly learn about ourselves and handle the emergency at hand.
But most of the time this is not the case, and we need to be proactive—stirring the pot to start discovering who we truly are by simply asking meaningful questions about ourselves.
I’ve found that when we take off a few days to sit alone and analyze ourselves, we get to know a lot about ourselves and kick-start an adventure of self-discovery that lasts a lifetime.
These are some tests and questions to start the process of self-discovery.
1) Do a personality test.
The Myers-Briggs test is a way to analyze our personality—it’s been used extensively in the corporate world for almost 50 years now and gives us a fair idea of who we truly are.
When I finally took the Myers-Briggs personality test, I found out I was an INTJ—an introverted thinker who needs a lot of time alone to be able to recharge my batteries.
That was in complete contrast to how I was living, and it banished the thought that I was weird and different. I finally understood why I craved solitude, even though I could be quite extroverted in small doses.
2) What are our strengths?
Positive Psychology has dominated our lives for the last few decades—it’s simply the study of what makes us happy and shows us which activities we can do more of, to infuse that spark in our lives.
Follow us to elephant journal to continue reading “7 Questions That Help Us Delve Deeper into ‘Knowing Ourselves’” and have a happy day.
About the Author
Mo Issa is a contributor with elephant journal, an entrepreneur, born again writer. He finally understands that he’s a spiritual being having an earthly human experience. He loves Hemingway, Hesse and Kahlil Gibran. He meditates regularly and runs when he can sense the rain coming down. -Mo has powerful conversations with everyone, reminding them of the story The Death of Ivan Ilych by Tolstoy, where on his deathbed he says: ”What if i lived all my life wrong?” He recently spoke at TedxAccra about Awakening to his Aliveness. Mo writes everyday when the clock strikes 6 in the morning and is regularly published Elephant Journal and Rebelle Society. He also blogs regularly.