From the very first session, self-awareness if one of the main capacities we aim to increase in psychotherapy.
Lack of self-awareness is like sleepwalking through life. We keep reacting to the things around us based on our conditioned responses that are often rooted in traumatic experiences. If we continue to live this way, never exploring our reactions, we don’t give ourselves a fair chance of discovering who we really are - our true Self.
Self-awareness is a gateway to uncovering our true Self, to understanding our motivations, desires, and choice we make and what we create with those choices. Once we know why we do what we do and how its’ affecting us, we have more choice over it. We have more freedom to choose how we respond.
Just because you’re at a different point in life than someone else, it doesn’t mean that you’re behind or that you’re not making progress.
In those moments when we compare ourselves to others we forget that we had different starting points, different circumstances, families, experiences, opportunities, etc…
When you remember that it’s easier to see how pointless comparison is.
Much more useful use of time is to reflect on whether you are living in alignment with your values and priorities.
Like anything in life, self-improvement can be used either as a tool or a weapon. Self-improvement is one of those things that we can very sneakily turn into a never ending ending cycle of "becoming better."
While I do believe that personal growth and change are inevitable parts of life, pursuing them from a place of shame and self-judgment becomes a game we can't win, and that's because we can't shame ourselves into feeling good about ourselves. Feeling good about ourselves comes from a sense of safety and acceptance, not judgment and shame.
Check in with yourself: Does desire for self-improvement and personal growth come from a place of excitement and self-honoring, or am I pursuing it because I don't feel worthy & enough as I am?
Any moment we interpret as bad or undesirable can be just that - a moment. When we feed that moment and prolong it by continuing to think about it, we turn it into a bad day, a bad week, month, and year. You don't have to carry it with you like heavy baggage. Let it be and let it go.