Self Awareness: Who are you?
Become aware of yourself. Look up from this book for a moment, and simply look around. Look out the window if there is one, or focus on something nearby. Ask yourself, “Who is looking out the window?”
Most likely you answered, “I am looking out the window.” Well, of course you know who the “I” is in that statement. Take a moment to get a feel for that “I.” Got it?
Now, what if someone else, say, your teacher had answered for you? They might say, “My student is looking out the window.” If your spouse answers? They would say, “My partner is looking out the window.” Compare those statements to your answer, “I am looking out the window.”
The person your teacher or spouse names is the same person, it is you. But to you, it may not feel the same as when you refer to yourself, as in “I AM looking.” That observer, your “I,” is the internal you, who you are, the core you. Others, even though they are close to you, have a different perspective on the person who is you.
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? —Mary Oliver
Looking at ourselves as observers on the world is how we express self-awareness. Humans are the only creatures on Earth who do this. It makes the ability very special. However, many people feel they don’t really know themselves, after all.
Chapter 4 is about self-awareness. It’s about matching who you are, right now, with the ideal self that you perceive yourself to be or that you always wanted to be.
It is never too late to become what you might have been. —George Eliot
Chapter 4 Introduction