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Oct24

Self Awareness: Do you Sometimes Stop to Wonder Why you React the Way you Do?

Self Awareness: Do you Sometimes Stop to Wonder Why you React the Way you Do?
Have you ever had one of those days when you keep “losing the plot” and rant and rave for the smallest things and then at the end of the day when you look back you think wow, what was that all about?
 
Why did I swear at the driver in the car in front of me who couldn’t hear or see me any way or why did I yell at my child when he was taking too long to get out the car or eat his breakfast? These are everyday occurrences which don’t normally get me so het up – so why today?
 
Relationships that Always End the Same Way
Or is it simply a case of often finding yourself in relationships that always end the same way and having no idea what went wrong or having that employee who manages to always press your buttons ?
 
What we see of each other and display of ourselves are behaviours and actions, however underpinning these overt behaviours and the reason people behave in certain ways is due to a number of reasons, of which emotions is a large part. Our behaviours are often compared to the tip of the ice berg whilst the emotions, lie beneath the surface and lets’ face it, when we think of the Titanic can we afford to ignore what lies beneath the surface?
 
Most people have a higher desire to want to understand others first, if you look at a Manager or leader of a team, it is of utmost importance to them to understand what makes their staff or team members “tick” in order that they be able to better influence their behaviours and performance to optimize their efficiency. We even find that in our relationships, that we can become consumed by trying to understand our partners, children or friends and also get frustrated when they don’t “get” us.
 
However before we can start to understand others we need to first look at ourselves and understand our own behaviours and underlying emotions, once we have a better understanding of ourselves we can use our emotions more effectively and strategically and only then can we get a better understanding of others. Leadership is about being able to bring out the best in our teams so managing ourselves strategically first and then others is critical to success.
 
We Need to Understand what we Do and why we Do It
Having a successful relationship is far more likely when we understand what we do and why we do it and only then can we start to understand the effect that we may have on our own relationship rather than always looking to someone else for the answers.
 
So, it is critical to get to know ourselves and become self aware in order to understand why we behave or react the way we do and learn to recognize and understand our patterns of behaviour, for it is only in doing this that we will be able to become the master of our own world. Too often we see things the way we are rather than how they really are.
 
Lau Tzu the ancient Chinese philosopher so wisely says;
“He who knows others is learned; he who knows himself is wise”
mjAnother great way to understand what I have said above is to take a few minutes and listen to the old Michael Jackson classic “Man in the Mirror” and really listen to the words...
“I starting with the man in the mirror
I’m asking him to change his ways
And no message could have been any clearer
If you wanna make the world a better place
Take a look at yourself and make a change.”