Self-honesty: The best self-help
"Being honest with oneself is a good exercise."
I'm not sure about you, but I have trouble being honest with myself at times. It typically occurs when I set out to make improvements in different areas of my life. I may set lofty goals or unrealistic deadlines that make me feel ambitious at first. Eventually, I end up feeling overwhelmed and unmotivated, knowing I cannot possibly accomplish everything I set out to do in the timeframe I allotted myself. I will usually end up abandoning my plans or make a half-hearted attempt to salvage what I started, leaving me feeling the agony of self-defeat.
I recently recognized how I get myself into these situations. It starts with visions of grandeur. I lay out the best case scenario without considering all of the competing variables at play. Life happens while we are busy making others plans. I also do not take into consideration my shortcomings. I sometimes struggle with anxiety, procrastination and overcommitting my time. While I am able to recognize these things after the fact, I forget to factor them in while I am conjuring up my master plans to help heal the world.
I now understand more clearly how having self-awareness is so important while I am making plans and setting deadlines. Sure, I feel great when I am in the ideation and planning stage, while picturing the finish line as I achieve my goals. However, as soon as I am faced with challenges that throw me off course, I can struggle to recover and get back on track. With this realization, I am learning to set more realistic goals and deadlines. I also make an effort to recognize my weak spots, anticipating roadblocks and setbacks so I can be more prepared to manage them instead of retreating. It's a work in progress, but I notice the difference.
Being honest with ourselves is not easy if we are truly being honest with ourselves. Who likes admitting to their faults and flaws? Not me. More importantly, who is willing to work on improving them or making adjustments to accommodate for the ones that are more fixed? Me! I hope you are too. If you feel like you do not have any areas in your life that you could improve on, how honest are you being with yourself? When I ask myself this, I make an effort to take a long look in the mirror. When I admit I need to make improvements and adjustments, I know I am being more honest with myself. Then, it's a matter of taking the necessary steps to make it happen.