Pretend for a moment that I’m a close friend and you’re telling me all about this great new person you’ve met. You dance around all the little things that season the relationship thus far with a huge smile plastered to your face. Then, because I care about you, I ask the question. “How much do you really know about this person?” You try to answer. You repeat things you’ve already said. You begin sputtering under pressure, and then acknowledge it. “Not much.”
I wonder how many of us have this kind of relationship with ourselves. How much do you really know about you?
I encourage you to spend a little time getting to know yourself. It’s just like getting to know a new friend. Spend time with yourself. Observe how you act around other people. Talk about the things you like and don’t like. Study yourself. It may seem a little foolish but it’s incredibly freeing. Here are a few practical ways to start.
- Personality tests – I’m fond of the Myers-Briggs and Enneagram models. The latter is a wonderful new discovery that is designed to help understand core personality and healthy and unhealthy tendencies.
- Talk to your friends about you and give them the freedom of brutal honesty.
- Spend time alone. Meditate. Daydream.
- Answer one random question a day. Books exist that can help you with this. A couple examples: What would you do if you won the lottery? or What would you do if there were no obstacles?
- Stage an argument with yourself.
These are just a few starting ideas because you are an incredible person and you should get to know you. Not to mention it’ll help identify those rough edges that could do with a little smoothing out. There is great joy in being true to yourself. There is great bondage and frustration in trying to be someone else. These discoveries have been immense blessings in my life. It’s a reason that I can say I’m an artist without fear, shame or worry. It’s one of the reasons I dare to dream in realms I would deny myself before. Trust me, it’s worth the effort to invest in this relationship.
How well do you know you?