Reflecting on Self-Awareness and Success
Some reflections on the importance of self-awareness and personal improvement, Here are some ideas on how to be successful and celebrate accomplishments.
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I'm sorry to say that for the first time since starting this newsletter, I am too fatigued to write today. This week has been particularly busy, and I didn't get enough sleep.
However, there's another reason I'm taking a break. I've been a fan of The Moth for a long time and have attended several of their events and listened to many of their podcast episodes. I've always wanted to tell my own story but haven't had the courage to do it. So, I've decided to share it with you here in the newsletter. Unfortunately, I didn't have enough time this week to figure out the story I wanted to tell and how to tell it. I don't want to do a poor job, so I'll save it for next time.
That said, I don't want to leave you empty-handed. This newsletter's theme is "ideas that challenged my thinking," and so here are five things I've read over the last two weeks that have challenged my thinking. I hope they challenge yours too.
I read this really deep nugget about self-awareness in Mark Manson’s newsletter, The Breakthrough:
“Albert Camus once said, “An intellectual is someone whose mind watches itself.”
In psychology, “meta-cognition” is a person’s ability to be aware of their own thoughts and emotions and have thoughts/emotions about those thoughts and emotions in real-time.
Meta-cognition is more casually known as “self-awareness” and is tied to all sorts of positive outcomes, from better emotional regulation to more focus and discipline and overall happiness and well-being.
Self-awareness is at the root of all personal improvement. Until you’re aware of your problems, there is little you can do to improve them.
We generally are good at recognizing certain thoughts and emotions within us and bad at others—i.e., we naturally recognize when we feel sad or guilty but get caught off guard by our anger or are in denial about our anxiety.
So, ask yourself: In what circumstances are you good at knowing how you are thinking and feeling? What circumstances are you bad at it?
Another way to think about it: What triggers you?”
Speaking of Mark Manson, he challenges the conventional wisdom of how to be successful in his YouTube video titled How to Get Ahead of 99% of People (Starting Today).
This is a bit of an old article about something called a "brag document, " which is a document that lists accomplishments and goals. She explains how to share the document with your managers and peer reviewers, and how to explain the big picture of your work. She also suggests using the brag document to reflect on your work and to encourage other people to list and celebrate their accomplishments. As a bonus, the article also includes a template for the document and advice for tracking accomplishments outside of work. Check it out.
I discovered the Relationship Theory YouTube channel this week. I don’t know how I haven’t known about this all this time. If, like me, you’ve never heard of it, here’s one of the first episodes I watched and enjoyed:
While we’re talking about podcasts, my favourite is Darknet Diaries. It explores the dark side of the internet and computer security through true stories of hackers, data breaches, and cybercrime. Each episode is an interesting and well-researched narrative that takes you on a journey through the underground world of hacking, cyber espionage, and online crime. Jack Rhysider, the host, is a cybersecurity professional himself, so he brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the podcast. It’s highly informative, but also engaging and entertaining. I think it’s a must-listen. He’s the latest episode I enjoyed.
Bonus: Since I’m already recommending other things to read, I might as well plug myself. I also write about tech now and then, mainly on my blog. If web development is something you’re interested in. I recently wrote this article for my company’s blog comparing React and Svelte.
PS: I now write the newsletter every two weeks. I’ve been thinking about using the week in between to write a short compilation (shorter than this one) of some interesting things I read/watch/listen to, with a short note on why I found it interesting. Would this be something you’d be interested in? Please let me know by replying to this email or leaving a comment.
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