“First we make the person happy, then the family, and then the nation”.
~ Dalai Lama ~
How self-knowledge leads to a positive life with meaning and purpose.
Not everybody who comes for therapy has a specific problem. Sometimes people want to explore a general feeling that their lives are not quite right; to develop a purpose, to create meaning, and to learn how to make conscious and more authentic choices and decisions for themselves.
I believe that everything that leads us to self-knowledge really can make us happier, healthier, more compassionate, more creative and more productive. When we know ourselves we can create life that reflects our true values and our true nature. We can live with a sense of well-being and harmony within ourselves. And when we feel fulfilled and happy it becomes easier to think about how to empower other people to live happy, fulfilling lives too.
Self-knowledge & Relationships
Life is about relationships, and the essence of relationships is communication. Self-knowledge leads to a greater understanding of ourselves, how we relate to the world, and how we communicate. It also helps us understand why people relate to us the way that they do. This includes romantic relationships, family, friends, professional settings and strangers. When we improve our communication we create conditions that improve and enrich our relationships. This in turn, leads towards a more enriching and fulfilling life.
Self-knowledge & Self-Esteem
Many of us hold to negative beliefs about self and those around us. Often these beliefs can lead to repeating the same situation over and over again or block us from taking necessary or desirable action. Limiting beliefs can keep us from doing what we really want to do. Overcoming them can be extremely empowering and is a fascinating process.
Self-knowledge & Career Planning
Clearer insight and understanding of our feelings, thoughts and actions leads to the ability to make conscious and more authentic choices and decisions for ourselves. The more self-aware we are the more we know what we need and what we really value. Discovering, manifesting and living our values can assist in living an authentic life – in accordance with our individual desires and potential, and in line with what really matters to us.
Self-knowledge & Well-being
I often hear people say, ‘I am again in the same situation, ‘Why does it always happen to me?’ or ‘Why do I keep going through the same issues in relationships?’ You might recognise that you keep on getting stuck in the same pattern of relationship, work and the dynamic you have around you. Perhaps some of your thoughts, feelings, and behaviours holds you back or cause you discomfort or distress; such as anxiety. When we are open to recognising a pattern we can learn to change it and establish new ways of feeling, thinking and behaving that will serve us; to live with a sense of well-being and harmony within ourselves.
Self-knowledge & Compassion
Anais Nin said “We don’t see things are they are, we see things as we are”. We make sense of the world from our own perspective which is limited to what is familiar to us, our positive/negative experiences, our interpretation of events, our culture, faith, background and values. It may be extremely useful to look at situations from a different perspective in order to gain fresh insight and find one’s own answers. Seeing different perspectives enables us to be more understanding and compassionate, towards ourselves and others.
By Joanna Chrzastowska