A day has 24 hours and by subtracting the hour we spend on sleep, we spend around 15 hours awake. How much of it do we spend with ourselves? And what is our own importance for ourselves? Does the answer of these two match like are they congruent? Being congruent means that if you are important to yourself then you spend around an hour of a day with yourself. Then these two statements are congruent. But if you are important for yourself but don’t even spend 15mins of a day with yourself, then these two statements are not congruent.
Two steps towards connecting with oneself.
First is to realize the importance of oneself. Why are we even important for ourselves? Well why shouldn’t we be important for ourselves? What’s their not to love and cherish? We should be the most important person in our own life. We should be our own priority.
Second is to spend time with oneself. In our busy lives we often underestimate our own importance and the importance of spending time with ourselves.
Four important steps one can follow while spending time with oneself.
1. Reminiscing past events. Spending time with oneself isn’t about just sitting idling. Spending time with oneself means listening to your own thoughts, processing and analysing whatever happened in a day, realizing what we are doing in our life- are we reaching our goals?, are our actions being productive or are they counterproductive?, whatever wrong happened, and even whatever right happened. But why is it important to ponder upon the past? It’s simple, it helps us to understand ourselves. Past is just like a ‘learning book’. As we cannot change past but we can learn from the past and change and control our future. No one likes to make the same mistake twice but it happens. It happens because we did not understand that why we made that mistake at the first place. So knowing what we did is important to understand why we did it, and why we did it is important for not repeating it again.
2. Plan the future with a strategy. After spending some time reminiscing and realizing whatever happened, some amount of time is important be given to ‘what are we going to do next?’. If our actions aren’t productive- planning out a strategy is very important to make them productive. Planning should be a part of your routine life. Planning (either written or visual) helps you to prepare for the future and in achieving our goals. If we are not moving forward in achieving our goals, then we need to plant out a different route. We can’t just sit around and wait for things to happen. We need to make thing happen. For something to happen or let’s say in physics term, for any motion there has to be a force applied and for applying force there has to be an energy. We are the energy, our action is the force and the motion is us getting closer to our goal. To achieve a goal, there isn’t just one way, often there are multiple routes, just like we have multiple ways or routes to reach our house. If one way isn’t working out, we should plan out the other ways because the ultimate goal is reaching our destination.
3. Self- evaluation and self-introspection. Another things which is important is, weekly self-evaluation and self-introspection and it should be a vital part of our daily routine. Our progress needs a feedback, we need to know for ourselves that how are we doing- whether we are making any mistakes or whether we need to plan out a better strategy or whether there’s some blockage that needs to be opened. Self-introspection would require from us to check on our feelings and emotions and we need to know exactly how we feel about different things because that will determine how we are going to act on it.
4. Mental workout. Just like we exercise or workout for our physical health and outside body, our inside needs exercising or workout too. Our mind receives many things in a day, many new thoughts and new images and we don’t really process them because life is too happening. Because of no processing our mind becomes clumsy, messy and chaotic. In order to organize it we need to put in some time and efforts by spending time with oneself, spending time to organize our thoughts. And the best way to do it is by writing the thoughts down, so that they become concrete and comprehensible and then plan out. Why is it important to write down? Why not just figure things out in our mind? Our mind goes through too much in day, too much information gets registered and majority of it do not get to our permanent memory. If it doesn’t get to our permanent memory, we won’t be able to remember it again and it will get lost. Which is why we can’t always rely on our memory system to remember everything automatically. Sometimes we need to write down things to remember. Another reason is because when we are thinking, our thoughts are streaming in a haphazard fashion, and we can’t understand them fully. Can we solve an algebraic equations in our mind? No we can’t and just like that we can’t comprehend every thought that’s going on in our mind and we need to write them down and then read them and make sense out of it. Or else we might miss an important thought just like we sometimes miss an important deadline because we didn’t set a reminder for it.
Benefits of connecting with yourself.
1. Reach one’s highest potential.
In order to reach our highest potential, we need to be aware of our own potential. When we connect with ourselves, we get to know ourselves better and become aware of who we are and what we are capable of.
2. Better understand ourselves and others.
If we spend time with ourselves we understand ourselves and other’s better and understand the causes behind different behaviours. Once we know what is causing what, we can also control it by controlling the cause. We become better masters our own life. By understanding others better, the quality of our relationships increase and we become highly efficient with people which increases our social quotient.
3. Become flexible- open to change.
Once we become aware of our counter-productive behaviours, we become open to change those because they are increasing the gap between us and our goal. Being flexible is very important in order to achieve something.
4. Prepared for future uncertainties.
While we are learning from our past, we are decreasing the probability of making the same mistakes twice. Also planning prepares us for anything which might go wrong and we will be ready with a strategy to deal with it.
5. Higher goal directed behaviour.
Knowing what we need to achieve and having and clear strategy to achieve it increases our goal directed productive behaviour which will increase our probability of achieving our goals.
It’s been more than a year since I personally started making some time for my own-self. In that I analyse whatever I am doing, I even analyse my little actions because they say something about me and I need to understand myself in order to have a control over myself and master my life. Writing down such articles help me to understand and develop new strategies for living a better life. I didn’t know that I knew all this, it’s only after I started to write them. A stream of though just starts at any time, even at 2am and I open my laptop and start typing because I don’t want to waste my thoughts by forgetting them- they are precious to me.