I was talking with a friend recently and the topic of self-awareness came up. She asked, ‘Why is self-awareness important?’ The short answer is…you can’t change what you don’t know! But I am going to do you one better and dive deeper and I’m going to give you a list of self-awareness journal prompts. After you learn of the benefits, you will want to start increasing your own self awareness!
What is self-awareness?
In order to answer, ‘Why is self-awareness important?’, but we must first define it. The online dictionary defined self-awareness as, ‘the conscious knowledge of one’s own character, feelings, motives and desires’. Someone who is self-aware can evaluate what is going on beneath the surface. They are also good at managing emotions and behaving or acting in a way that aligns with their values rather than behaving in a way that manages uncomfortable emotions. High internal self-awareness causes us to approach the deep waters of our heart with curiosity – asking ourselves, why am I thinking, feeling or acting this way?
The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out. Proverbs 20:5
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23–24
Why is self-awareness important?
Benefits of Self-Awareness
So when we are more self-aware, we are able to empathize with others. Self-aware people tend to communicate with clarity and intention. Consequently, the gift of communication leads to stronger relationships. When we have a deeper understanding of what is going on with our heart we get good at regulating our emotions and reactions. Finally, increased happiness and decreased stress are a couple of additional bonuses as well!
Cost of Low Self Awareness
When self-awareness is lacking, we will lack insight into the deep waters of our heart. If we have no awareness of our thoughts, emotions and actions. As a result, we become reactive instead of responsive. Lack of self-awareness leads to fear of change, fear of being wrong, fear of the truth and fear of being your authentic self.
Improving Self Awareness
Let’s talk about how to improve self awareness…
First, be in prayer – God is the greatest heart surgeon and knows exactly what you need to know about yourself and is faithful to complete a good work in you!
“I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.” Jeremiah 17:10
…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6
Next, increasing self awareness takes courage, curiosity and practice! Searching your heart is best done with God. Download the self-awareness journal prompts to help you get started.
Third, ask for help. Coworkers, family and friends (that are honest and trustworthy) can often give honest feedback. Seeking a counselor, life coach or pastoral counsel are also great ways to help you find the blind spots in your life.
50 Self Awareness Journal Prompts
- How do I deal with rejection?
- How do I respond when someone is judgmental?
- How do I respond to difficult relationships/people?
- How do I respond when my plans are interrupted?
- What is my attitude when hard things come my way?
- What is my response/reaction when I am offended?
- How do I handle a lack of appreciation from others?
- How do I handle a lack of control?
- How do I react/feel when I make a mistake?
- How do I react when things don’t go my way?
- How do I spend my time?
- What do I need more of in my life?
- What kind of things do I say to myself?
- What do I need to do less of?
- How do I manage stress?
- How do I react to change?
- What gets in the way of achieving my goals?
- What’s missing from my life?
- What expectations have I placed on myself?
- Are my expectations of self/others reasonable?
- What do I fear/worry/stress about?
- How do I set boundaries?
- How do I deal with overwhelm?
- When do I tend to procrastinate?
- How do I prioritize my time?
- How do I deal with disappointment in relationships?
- When do I pray the most/least?
- How do I connect with God?
- How well do I take responsibility?
- What makes me feel defensive?
- How/when do I compare myself to others?
- What gets in the way of time with God?
- What is God teaching me lately?
- What area do I desire to grow in my life?
- How would my friends describe me?
- How do I want to be described?
- What has been my greatest disappointment?
- When is it hard to say no?
- When do I tend to engage in pleasing people?
- When do I make assumptions about others’ thoughts/feelings?
- How do I react to others’ defensiveness?
- When do I tend to hide from God?
- When do I tend to hide from others?
- How do I overcome fear?
- How do I respond to storms in life?
- How do I resolve conflict?
- What do I avoid?
- When am I most angry?
- What do I attach my value/self worth to?
- How easily do I forgive others?
When going through the journal prompts, take your time. Go beyond simply answering the questions with short answers. Dive deeper by asking yourself why you respond the way you do to each prompt. Refrain from judging your answers. Instead, simply get curious!
As a therapist – self-awareness would be my #1 hot tip. You can’t change what you don’t know. Increasing self awareness is hard work and takes courage – you can do anything through Christ who gives you strength. Ask Him to increase your self awareness. The benefits are huge! Benefits include regulating emotions more effectively, stronger relationships and responding instead of reacting. Without self awareness our ability to navigate the deep waters of our heart is difficult to say the least. If you are ready to do the brave work of improving self awareness in your life, then ask yourself the hard questions. Get the free PDF.