With more and more automation taking place and more competition for jobs with AI coming in, we need to stand out from the crowd and one way to improve your human skills is to become more self-aware.

There are 8 really great ways to do this in part one we are going to look at the first four and then in part 2 we will give you the other 4. These are all activities if you do any of them they will give you new insight about yourself and how you impact on others, this can help to set further goals to develop your human skills.

1. Stand back and take a good look at yourself
This can be challenging as it is difficult to be objective about yourself, often we are too critical, blind to our faults or both an easy way to get started with this is: –

  • Try to identify your current understanding by writing out your perceptions. This may be things that you think you are good at doing, or that you need to improve.
  • Think about things you are proud of, or any accomplishments that really stand out throughout your life.
  • Think about your childhood and what made you happy back then. What has changed and what has remained the same? What are the reasons for the changes?
  • Encourage others to be honest with you about how they feel about you, and take what they say to heart.

2. Keep a journal.

You can write about anything in your journal, even if it is not related to your goals. Recording your thoughts on paper helps to relieve your mind of those ideas, and clears it up to make space for new information and ideas.

Take some time each night to write in your journal about your thoughts and feelings, and your successes and failures for the day. This will help you grow and move forward in your achievements.

As you self-reflect, take some time to think about how you impact on others and how people you connect with view you. Think about what you do to help other people, and if you could possibly do more. What are your values, and what is most important to you right now?

3. Write down your goals, plans, and priorities.
Plan out your goals in a worksheet so they turn from ideas into a step-by-step process. Break down your larger goal into mini-goals so it seems less overwhelming, and tackle it head on. Try using the SMARTER acronym below to help you.

S pecific – be definite and clear
M easurable – establish concrete criteria for know when you have achieved your goal.
A chieveable – Is it possible, practical and important
R ealistic – Are you willing and able to work towards it
T imed – Ground the goal with a time frame to create a sense of urgency
E xcite – Why do you want to achieve it what is in it for you
R esult – What does success look like, visualise it and imagine yourself achieving it

4. Perform daily self-reflection.
In order to have self-awareness, you must do self-reflection. This requires setting aside some time, preferably every day, to honestly look at yourself as a person. Committing to this practice can help you improve.

In our demanding business world, daily self-reflection is easier said than done. There is always pressure to do more with less, and an endless flow of information through our portable technology.

Because it takes time to self-reflect, start by setting aside just 15 minutes each day. Self-reflection is most effective when you use a journal and write down your thoughts. It’s also best to find a quiet place to think.