When is the last time you asked a friend, mentor or colleague for feedback on your strengths and areas for growth? Is there a disconnect between how you see yourself and how others perceive you? Whether you are making a decision, communicating with others, working through a conflict or leading a team, you have preferences of how you approach situations. How do you know your preferences and what is the value of knowing? Self-awareness provides the connection to identify opportunities to grow.
There are formal and informal ways to become self-aware and begin to understand your preferences. Informally, you can take time to reflect on how you approached a situation, what went well and identify what to improve. Also, ask a trusted friend or family member for feedback. Prepare to receive the input, because if you react defensively you will not receive open and honest feedback.
You may ask questions like…
- Am I an active listener?
- How do I handle stressful situations?
- Do I ask others for their ideas and opinions?
Assessments that can also increase your self-awareness include Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), DiSC®, StrengthsFinder, 360 reviews and annual performance reviews. I have taken the MBTI assessment several times throughout my life. Previously, I learned my four (4) preference types, and it did not move me to action. Recently, I took the assessment and found tremendous value in the process. Why? I was supported by a MBTI Practitioner. I received a Personal Impact Report and coaching sessions to understand my preferences, how I work with others and to discuss opportunities for my personal and professional growth. Thank you Neale Edwards for all of the value you added as my MBTI Coach.
As a result of increasing my self-awareness, I identified growth opportunities in my communication and conflict styles. One example is understanding different ways people obtain their energy and ideas. My preference is to discuss ideas and then to take time individually to develop the ideas before having an additional conversation. My CEO gets her energy from brainstorming and developing ideas together. We are now aware of each other’s preferences and have a give and take with our communication. She knows that if we discuss a few ideas together, giving me some time or until the next day to think about what we have discussed will yield the best results from me. I know that I need to stretch myself and continue the dialogue when we are strategizing to get the most value.
How will you increase your self-awareness today? What approaches have you successfully used to become more self-aware? Share your thoughts and experiences with us below.
For more information about our Strengths-Based Coaching and Customized Training services reach out to us at Info@bscorbettconsulting.com. It would be an honor to support you on your intentional growth journey.