“Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment.” – Tao Tzu
Self-awareness is the first step in creating the life you want. When you know yourself, you’re able to understand whether your thoughts, feelings, and actions match who you are and what you truly want in your life. The best way to become more self-aware is to ask yourself questions. The answers you find can give you insight into the truth about your strengths, weaknesses, hopes, and dreams, and can also help you recognize any self-sabotaging behavior or fears that don’t serve your highest good and happiness.
Below are some examples of questions to ask yourself. Be as specific and honest as you can. The more well thought out your answers, the more power they have to help you make changes in your life.
Questions About You
– How do I define happiness? Love?
– When are three specific times in my life I’ve been the happiest?
– How did I feel about myself during those times? What elements were present?
– Do I feel fulfilled and happy with my life?
– What do I want more of? What steps am I taking to get it?
-What are my most basic beliefs about love (i.e., scary, hard, never lasts, amazing, easy)?
– When did I start to feel that way? Does it make sense to keep believing that? Why or why not?
– What is my biggest fear? Why does it scare me? If it came true, what would that mean?
– What situations stress me out the most and make me angry or frustrated? Why?
– How do I want to feel the majority of the time?
– Do I have control over my emotions and how I feel? Why or why not?
Questions about Love
If you’re not currently in a relationship …
– Do the people I’ve had relationships with share similar qualities? What attracted me to them in the first place? Why did those relationships ultimately end?
– How would I feel if I never had a life partner? Why would I feel that way?
– What does a happy relationship look like to me?
– What characteristics and qualities do I want my person to possess, (i.e., kind, funny, smart, wise, caring, open-minded, honest, trustworthy, attractive)? Does it matter whether we have similar interests, life goals, and religious and political beliefs?
– How would I feel in a relationship with this person?
– Am I open to a new relationship?
– What steps am I taking to meet someone new?
If you are currently in a relationship …
– Am I happy in this relationship? Why or why not?
– What qualities initially attracted me to this person?
– What qualities do I enjoy about them now?
– Why are those qualities important to me?
– How would I like my partner to change?
– Could I still be happy in this relationship if they never changed? Why or why not?
– What is the biggest problem I see in our relationship?
– How can I change my attitude about my partner to improve our relationship?
Questions About Your Career
– How do I support myself? How did I get into this field?
– Do I enjoy my work? Am I doing what I love to do?
– If yes, how could I enjoy my work even more? If not, what do I ideally want to be doing? Was there a time when I enjoyed what I did? What elements were present then?
– How can I change my attitude about my job to feel more satisfied with it?
– What did I love to do as a child (i.e., play with animals, do puzzles, play house, run around outside, write, talk with my friends, organize my room)? Does my profession today reflect that?
– Has anything kept me from doing the kind of work I love? Do I want to keep allowing it to stop me?
– What steps can I take toward doing what I want to do?
– What does success mean to me?
It can be hard to look at yourself this closely and honestly. But, it’s worth the work. Research shows that the subconscious mind controls 95 percent of a person’s daily thoughts. When you bring those subconscious thoughts into your conscious mind, you can see more easily what you truly want and begin to make it happen. Take the time to get to know yourself. What you uncover just might lead you to levels of happiness you never even knew existed.