Success Starts With Self-Awareness

Success Starts With Self-Awareness

Pinpointing the attributes that lead to success is an impossible job, the list is endless and forever growing. Not to mention that the definition of success is completely subjective to each individual, making this list even more complex to construct. However, there is one thing that I believe contributes to all success in any shape or form, and that is self-awareness. Self-awareness is the ability to focus on yourself and how your actions, thoughts, or emotions do or don't align with your internal standards. Being self-aware allows you to objectively evaluate yourself, manage your emotions, align your behaviour with your values, and understand correctly how others perceive you.


Self-awareness is important because when you have a better understanding of yourself, you are able to experience yourself as a unique and separate individual. This enables you to make the changes needed to align you with our goals, to build on your areas of strength as well as identify areas where you would like to make improvements.


Being self-aware allows you to understand your strengths, but more importantly highlights your weaknesses. This is key. This can be really difficult, evaluating yourself and being completely honest is not always pleasant, but it is really important. From here, you can understand what is actually holding you back and how to change this.


“Self-awareness isn’t one truth. It’s a delicate balance of two distinct, even competing, viewpoints.- Tasha Eurich



In a Forbes article, Victor Lipman addresses the important topic of leadership and self-awareness. He highlights a study that was conducted in 2010 by Green Peak Partners and Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. This study looked at 72 executives, and concluded that high self-awareness often correlates with achieving high degrees of success as a leader.



“Leadership searches give short shrift to ‘self-awareness,’ which should actually be a top criterion. Interestingly, a high self-awareness score was the strongest predictor of overall success. This is not altogether surprising as executives who are aware of their weaknesses are often better able to hire subordinates who perform well in categories in which the leader lacks acumen. These leaders are also more able to entertain the idea that someone on their team may have an idea that is even better than their own”.


The first three steps I would recommend taking to become more self-aware would be;


  1. Ask for feedback at work or ask the people around you to describe you, honestly.
  2. Perform daily self-reflection, did your actions align with your long-term goals?
  3. Make sure you’re writing down your goals, plans and priorities frequently.

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