Self Care

Who, Me? Embracing Self-Awareness as We Age

February 1, 2024

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Ladies, as we age, we tend to get a little stuck in our thinking. It happens to all of us to some degree.  A lot of us forget to be aware of who we are and how we project ourselves as we move along the road of life. Girls, I am here to tell you nothing makes you age faster than not having self-awareness.

 

What is Self Awareness

Self-awareness is like having an internal mirror that lets you see yourself clearly—your thoughts, feelings, and actions. It’s not just about knowing yourself; it’s a continuous journey of self-discovery that shapes how you navigate life.

 

Self-awareness as we age

 

You can learn to be open to new ideas, to new insights and to the new cultural norms. And remember, this is not a situation where you are self-aware or you’re not. It’s a spectrum, and no one on earth is perfect at it. In fact, studies show only 10-15 percent of people are truly self-aware. But we can work towards it in our journey toward a positive growth mindset! And if you find yourself on the other end of being looked at as “old” or feel “stuck and stagnant,” then let’s pull ourselves out of the mud together!




Internal Self Awareness

Internal self-awareness is how you see and view yourself, your decisions, and your values.

External Self Awareness

External self-awareness is being…well, aware, of how the outside world views you. So every time you feel a victim of ageism? That’s your external self-awareness, recognizing how society may look at you.

Cultural Self Awareness

Cultural self-awareness is kind of an extension of internal and external awareness. This is being aware of changing cultural norms and expectations. Once upon a time, I was a woman who did not see the color of a person’s skin. In my mind, I thought that was because I felt very strongly that we all should be equal, full stop. But it wasn’t until the BLM movement that I learned that while that attitude was well-meaning, it was misdirected. Refusing to see a person’s color meant I did not see the challenges that person dealt with every day. I didn’t see the constant microaggressions, their history of pain, their pain today. I think it was also a way for me, as a Caucasian woman, to feel less uncomfortable with racism and bias. And we all need to feel uncomfortable with it.

I became aware of another point of view.

That is what changes the world, and if, as you age, you get stuck in beliefs of the past and are not open to new ways of seeing things, you cannot grow.

 

Self-awareness as we age

 

10 Signs You Lack Self Awareness

Wonder if you need to think about jumping on the self-awareness bandwagon?

  • I am who I am.
  • That’s the way I’ve always done it; why should I change?
  • It’s too late to change.
  • That’s not the way we did it in my day.

Any of this sound familiar? Have you, or someone you’ve known, thought like this? Well, I’m here to tell you it’s not too late. Remember the stereotypical older women from our youth complaining about “those kids and their darn rock music”? Don’t be her, ok?  😉

Other signs you need an awareness tune-up?

  1. Blind to Feedback: If you find yourself consistently dismissing or ignoring feedback from others, especially when it’s about your behavior or actions, it could be a sign of lacking self-awareness.
  2. Limited Emotional Insight: Difficulty in recognizing, understanding, and expressing your own emotions suggests a lack of emotional self-awareness.
  3. Unaware of Impact: You might lack self-awareness if you frequently underestimate the impact of your words or actions on others, unintentionally causing discomfort or conflict.
  4. Defensive Behavior: Constant defensiveness or a tendency to shift blame rather than reflecting on your actions may indicate a lack of self-awareness.
  5. Repetition of Mistakes: If you repeatedly make the same mistakes without learning from them, it could signify a lack of awareness about your patterns of behavior.
  6. Inconsistent Values and Actions: A misalignment between your stated values and your actual behavior suggests a lack of awareness of your own principles.
  7. Limited Perspective Taking: Difficulty understanding or empathizing with others’ perspectives may indicate a lack of external self-awareness.
  8. Reacting impulsively: If you frequently act without thinking or reflecting on the consequences, it might be a sign that you lack self-awareness in the moment.
  9. Resistance to Change: A strong resistance to change or an unwillingness to consider alternative viewpoints may indicate a lack of flexibility and self-awareness.
  10. Disconnection from Personal Goals: Losing sight of your long-term goals or feeling adrift without a clear sense of purpose may suggest a lack of self-awareness regarding your aspirations and values.

 

Characteristics of Self Awareness

Want to know what makes a self-aware pro?

  • Embarking on a Journey of Self-Discovery: Folks who stay in tune with themselves regularly take moments to reflect on their thoughts, feelings, and actions. It’s like digging for treasure, unlocking valuable insights into what makes them tick.
  • Tapping into Emotional Intelligence: The cool part about self-awareness is how it mixes with emotional smarts. Those who’ve got a good handle on self-awareness gracefully navigate their own emotions, handling them like champs and approaching social situations with a good dose of empathy.
  • A Wholesome Self-Image: Self-aware individuals keep it real when it comes to who they are. They’re all about embracing their strengths and quirks without going overboard with criticism or praise.

 

Self-awareness as we age

 

  • Open Arms to Feedback: Being cool with feedback, whether it’s a pat on the back or some constructive criticism, is a must for self-awareness. Those who welcome outside perspectives can use them to get to know themselves better and make positive tweaks.
  • Aligning Values and Actions: Walking the talk is a big deal in the world of self-awareness. Living in sync with your beliefs creates a vibe of integrity and authenticity.
  • Adaptability in Action: Self-awareness is like a trusty compass in new situations. Understanding your likes and dislikes lets you roll with the punches, facing change with flexibility and a bit of bounce-back spirit.
  • Empathy in the Limelight: When you’re in tune with yourself, it spills over into how you get others. This empathy creates stronger connections and bonds because you can vibe with other people’s experiences and feelings.
  • Embracing the Present Moment: Mindfulness is the name of the game for self-aware folks. Being fully in the moment helps you savor what’s happening now, handle stress, and make thoughtful decisions.
  • Mastering Emotional Regulation: Handling your emotions like a pro is a skill for the self-aware. They’re less likely to get swept away by the bad vibes and can keep their cool in tough situations.
  • Crafting a Fulfilling Life: Self-aware peeps often report higher levels of life satisfaction. Knowing yourself and having a clear sense of what you’re about brings a sense of purpose and fulfillment.
  • Dedication to Growth: If you’re all about growing and evolving, you’re rocking the self-awareness scene. Those with this vibe actively look for ways to learn and improve throughout their lives.
  • Communication Chill: Clear and chill communication is a strong suit for self-aware folks. They get how their words and actions affect others, leading to more effective and positive interactions.
  • Resilience: Self-awareness is like a secret weapon for bouncing back from setbacks. Acknowledging your strengths and flaws helps you face challenges with a balanced perspective, bouncing back from tough times with style.



Benefits of Self Awareness

  1. Better Decision-Making: When you know yourself well, decisions become more aligned with your values and goals.
  2. Improved Relationships: Understanding your emotions helps you relate better to others, fostering authentic connections.
  3. Personal Growth: Recognizing your strengths and weaknesses fuels a mindset of continuous improvement.
  4. Resilience: During tough times, self-awareness acts as a sturdy anchor, helping you navigate challenges.

 

How to Cultivate Being More Self-Aware

Ready to embark on the awesome journey of self-awareness? Buckle up, and let’s dive in with a big smile!

Reflect and Chill:

  • Grab a cozy spot, maybe a favorite nook or a comfy couch.
  • Reflect on your day, your feelings, and any aha moments.

Feedback Fiesta:

  • Hit up your buddies for some friendly feedback. This can be tough if we aren’t comfortable with constructive criticism, but it’s vital to challenging things holding you back!
  • Embrace the constructive nuggets—they’re all golden.

 

Self-awareness as we age

 

Mindful Moments:

  • Try a bit of mindfulness and meditation. It’s like a mental spa day!
  • Let go of the noise, and savor the present. You’ll be amazed.

Values Quest:

  • What makes your heart do a happy dance? Identify those core values.
  • Align your actions with what truly matters—kind of like a personal compass. If you say you value honesty, but you steal cable? Something is up!

Emotion Explorer:

  • Be your own detective when it comes to emotions.
  • Why that happy dance or the occasional frown? Unravel the mystery. Try to find out the “why” of what is going on in your life.

Personality Playtime:

  • Take fun personality quizzes. It’s like discovering your own superhero powers!
  • Find out if you’re more of a wise owl or a spontaneous adventurer. You might be surprised there was a side of you you’ve never met!

Chat it Out:

  • Swap stories with pals who have different tales to tell. Ask authentic questions, and really listen.
  • It’s like a cultural exchange for your mind—super enlightening!

Goals with a Dash of Spice:

  • Set goals that make you go, “Yes, I can totally do that!”
  • Spice it up with a mix of challenges and celebrations.

Oops, I Did it Again:

  • Embrace the oops moments; we’re all rockstars in the making.
  • Learn, laugh, and move forward—it’s part of the grand adventure. Need to move on from something and you can’t seem to let it go? Check out my post on How to Forgive Yourself for Past Mistakes.

Knowledge Buffet:

  • Dig into books, podcasts, or whatever tickles your brain.
  • Learning from others is a super important add-on to your self-awareness toolkit.

Cheer Squad Assemble:

  • Surround yourself with your personal cheerleaders. Preferably open-minded girls like you!
  • Share your wins, ponderings, and everything in between.

Pro Help (No Capes Required):

  • If you need a sidekick on this journey, consider talking to a pro.
  • Therapists and coaches are like the Yodas of self-awareness—wise and super helpful.

Remember, you’re the main character in this epic tale of self-discovery. So, enjoy the ride, be kind to yourself, and revel in the fantastic person you’re becoming! 🌟

Self-awareness isn’t a fixed destination but an ongoing journey. It empowers you to live authentically as you age, make informed choices, and understand the intricate puzzle that is our experience. Something that does indeed get more difficult as the years go by. Follow these tips and unlock the keys to a more genuine, intentional, and fulfilled life.

Find more articles on how to empower yourself to create the life you’ve always wanted, no matter what your age!!




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