The Self Matters - Companion Helping You Create Your Life from the Inside Out


How much do I want to read more? 8/10

I find the questions relevant to know oneself better, and connect to our "true self".
This guide is a nice help into introspection, and digging deep into oneself.


INTRODUCTION

You must begin to consciously monitor your- self on a day-to-day basis, observing not only what you do but also how and why you do it.
You must also constantly compare and con- trast your actual real-world life with that which your authentic self de- sires and requires.

I have said that the most important relationship you will ever have in this world is the one you have with yourself.
The quality of a relationship is a function of the extent to which it is based on a solid underlying friendship and meets the needs of the two people involved.

what kind of friend you are to you?
what characterizes your closest friendships with others. (devoted, loyal, fun-loving, honest, and genuine.)
what you truly want and need to live consistently with your authentic self.
Be sure that you specifically, precisely identify your wants and needs and are deeply, loyally committed and you will have what you want.

1 - WHAT IF

read chapter 1 of Self Matters: Creating Your Life from the Inside Out.
A lot of us have given up our passion and let the colors fade out of our experience. We've settled for the appearance of an okay life instead of the substance of a great life.
In the process, we've lost track of what is genuinely important to us. We've become couch potatoes in the parlor of life, over stimulated with input from the outside, and increasingly deaf to messages from the inside.
Your present and future don't have to continue in drab shades of gray.

I'm talking about learning to trust yourself, exercising the courage to be your real self, and making your life what you want it to be.
I'm talking about claiming the right to live with ex- citement, passion, and confidence.

AH, THE GOOD OL' DAYS

Be specific and concrete. Include time, place, circumstances, who you were with, what was happening, what you were doing, and any other details you can remember. Pay special attention to how you felt.

1/ I remember a particular time when I was especially happy, and it was…

2/ Sometimes, I felt really excited, but one time that stands out is when…

3/ I remember times when a person said something to me or treated me in such a way that it made a positive difference in my life, and one of those times was when…

4/ A time when I felt really special to someone was when I…

5/ When I was younger, I always wanted to…

6/ What I desire most deeply is to…

7/ If I could be or do anything I wanted to do, I would…

8/ I used to dream about myself as…

9/ If I could learn anything, I would choose to learn…

10/ What interests me most is (name at least five interests)…

11/ When I fantasize about myself, I am…

12/ I wish people would see me as…

13/ Before my life is over I want to…

14/ If I could, I would dedicate my life to…

15/ My secret desire always has been to…

AUTHENTICITY LITMUS TEST

If you want to make the changes that will help you live authentically now and in the future, you need to know where you are.
Have you been passively ac- cepting what life throws at you and ignoring who you really are? Have you even been choosing behaviors that keep you from an authentic life? Or are your choices and circumstances flowing from your authen- tic self?
Be as honest as you can.

  1. Never
  2. Sometimes
  3. Often
  4. Always

11-15: You may have some sense of who you are and what you care about, but you are making compromises that put your authentic self at risk. It's time to stop moving in the direction you're going and make the changes that will help you be who you really want to be.

WHAT DO YOU WANT?

What sorts of changes will begin to shape a life that fits the real you?
What elements are missing from your life right now that would help to bring your world in line with the person that you truly, authentically are?
What do you want?
What do you need to be part of your life?

  1. I would give my life for this.
  2. I would sacrifice a lot, but not all, for this.
  3. I want this enough to go to some trouble for it.
  4. I wouldn't do much to have this.

What's keeping you from pursuing those items you've checked and starred? Do you know? What would it take to make them more a part of your life?

JOURNAL EXERCISE

"If you aim for nothing, you're sure to reach it."

The important thing is that you dig deep and get honest with yourself. Write from the heart, and keep writing until you've said everything on the subject that you can. Please don't skip this step. It's a crucial part of what you're going to do to make your life much, much better.

1/ One of the things I hope to find out about myself is…

2/ I need to know why I…

3/ In my relationship, I want (don't want) to share

4/ This time next year, I'd like my job to be…

5/ By the time I finish this workbook, I would like to be able to…

describe the "you" that is beginning to emerge.


2- DEFINING THE AUTHENTIC SELF

read chapter 2 of Self Matters: Creating Your Life from the Inside Out.

You'll discover that you can refuse to accept the life you're living if it doesn't truly reflect who you are.
But before, "Who are you?"

The authentic you may be buried under a pile of other people's expectation, but that core self exists and is accessible to you if you're willing to do the work to reconnect to your strengths and values in a meaningful way.
You have a unique set of gifts, skills, abilities, interests, talents, insights, and wisdom. they give you your happiest, most satisfying, and rewarding moments in life.

It takes an enormous amount of energy to be what you are not. Yet this is exactly what happens when you suppress your authentic self and let your fictional self - that being built on the judgments, demands, and expectations of others - rule.
On the other hand, as you learn more and more how to throw off your fictional self and unleash your authentic self, you'll feel a terrific energy lifting and carrying you forward. You'll feel inspired and healed.

Let your gut speak.

THE BEST ME

give your best attention to tuning in to your innermost self.
Find words that seem to you to describe yourself.
It's only important that you quiet the negative voices and assessments that you usually carry around with you and instead focus on the many positive qualities that make you unique.

MY HERO!

Another, less direct way to uncover the qualities that you value most is to consider the people you hold in highest regard.
"Who are your heroes?"
The people you admire the most tell a lot about you. Right now, list five people you consider "he- roes" in your own life or in the world, today or in the past.
Choose 5 people whom you really believe to be heroes, not the people you would expect others to choose or whom you think you ought to respect and admire.

the top of your "hero" list?
describe why that person is top-of- the-list for you.
Include every quality and/or behavior that makes that person unique and special - that is, worthy of "hero" status.

AUTHENTICITY SCALE

the "polar alternatives."

FS: I am motivated by a need to please authority and win approval from others.
AS: I am motivated by internal factors, such as a sense of a mission in life and honest thinking about myself.

FS: I follow orders for fear of disapproval.
AS: I make choices based on best-interest.

FS: I lack of confidence to function without authority figures; I lack initiative.
AS: I am confident to function effectively with self-decisions.

FS: My self-esteem is based on what others think; I desperately want approval.
AS: My self-esteem is defined internally with or without external approval.

FS: I have difficulty in seeing connection between personal be- havior and cones- quences without others reaction.
AS: I am able to see connection between personal behavior and consequences.

FS: I have difficulty making choices based on personal priorities.
AS: I am able to make choices based on self- priorities.

FS: I have feelings of dependency and fear.
AS: I have feelings of self- confidence and strength.

FS: I avoid internal feelings.
AS: I seek internal knowledge.

FS: I am compliant to others.
AS: I am cooperative with others.

FS: I am oriented to avoid punishment.
AS: I am oriented to self- fulfillment.

FS: I am generally uneasy about what people expect of me.
AS: I am usually confident around other people.

FS: I feel frightened most of the time.
AS: I am happy with myself most of the time.

FS: I feel lost in my life.
AS: I have a purpose to my life.

FS: I always feel as if I do not belong here.
AS: I have a kinship with everyone.

FS: I hate to make decisions.
AS: I enjoy making decisions.

FS: I hate myself most of the time.
AS: I am amazed at myself.

FS: I cannot forgive myself.
AS: I have made mistakes, but I have learned from them.

FS: I call myself names like “stupid” and “dummy”
AS: I appraise myself honestly and objectively.

FS: I feel like a looser
AS: I am a winner.

FS: I still hear my parents talk to me in my had.
AS: Ihaveletgomy parents’ judgments.

FS: I worry that I am going to screw up.
AS: I cannot let pessimism into my life.

FS: I always wonder if others are evaluating me.
AS: I pay attention to my values rather than others’.

FS: I often wonder why despite my best efforts it seems so hard to get what you want in life.
AS: I find it simple to obtain what I want in life because I can focus correctly.

FS: When I am alone I find myself staring into space and feeling disconnection.
AS: When I am alone I find I am good company and I enjoy my space.

FS: When I cannot sleep I wonder how I am going to make it through the next day.
AS: When I cannot sleep I allow my mind to be creative, knowing that tomorrow will be exciting and rewarding.

FS: I find that hope and joy give way to tired “going through the motions of life” feelings
AS: I find hope and joy easy to experience.

FS: I often find it hard to get off my butt and get into the game.
AS: I find it easy to get started on a new project.

FS: I often worry why other people are successful and I am not.
AS: I find it easy to understand why other people are successful.

FS: I am usually in the grips of depression and anxiety.
AS: I am usually happy and hopeful.

FS: I am often frustrated and want to just give up and scream.
AS: I can handle.

FS: I often wonder why I am never the boss or respected as a leader.
AS: I am often the boss and respected.

FS: I struggle to comprehend why my marriage is hard and my children are not adjusting well.
AS: My family life is secure and comforting.

FS: I want to run away from the world, especially when the bills come.
AS: I find my life fun and bills ust a small part of life.

FS: I feel that I am living a masquerade life, not one of my own.
AS: I am living my own life.

FS: I am sick and tired of my life.
AS: My life is wonderful.

FS: I shake my head when I commit to starting a new job, a new diet, etc., because I will probably fail.
AS: I look forward to new challenges, knowing that success is possible.

FS: I have come to the conclusion that I am living a life that I did not design or want.
AS: I am living my life, my purpose.

FS: I am bitter about my life and how it has turned out.
AS: I am not bitter but I am glad I designed my life, however it has worked out.

38-70: This range suggests that you are seriously disconnected from your authentic self. Ask yourself how much of your experience of life is what you really want.

71-110: This range suggests that most of the time you are operating from a distorted fictional self-concept rather than from who you really are. You may be often confused about what you should be doing or how best to use your time. You may be bewildered about what the world expects of you. In this range, you may be aware of your fictional self and know that you could change your life, but you may also fear the responsibility of change.

111-129: This score indicates that your self-concept is distorted into a fictional version at least some of the time. While you may be afraid to be totally yourself because of the world's power over you, you may also want desperately to serve your authenticity. The problem is, in this range, a person often lets himself or herself down when challenges get too great.

130-142: In this range, you are fortunate enough to operate mostly in tune with your authenticity. You have a clear idea of your authentic self and what you want from life. When faced with difficulties, you look naturally into the self so that goals remain clear and consistent with your authenticity.

TEST OF CONGRUENCY

how you are thinking, feeling, and living - compares to what your experience would be if you were living an ideal, fully authentic, and fulfilling life.

  1. First, you will describe your full potential by rating yourself on certain dimensions as you would be at your best.
  2. Second, you'll rate yourself on the same dimensions, this time as those dimensions reflect who and what you believe you really are.
  3. Third, you will determine the percentage of difference between the two. The comparison will give you an early benchmark as to the health of your self-concept and the extent to which you are living true to yourself.

Step 1: Circle all the words that you think describe the ideal person you want to be, the person you believe is the full potential of who you are and will ever be.

pretty attractive beautiful cute nice-looking appealing cool sweet spiritual wise nice friendly faithful leader strong supportive moral ethical principled good honest decent warm loving tender warmhearted demonstrative caring kind affectionate cordial hospitable welcoming amiable cheerful passionate fiery enthusiastic zealous arrogant egocentric altruistic sympathetic humane selfless philanthropic smart dependent free gentle thoughtful domineering submissive autonomous creative compassionate self-sufficient private liberated conventional objective elegant clever stylish intelligent quick charming tidy neat thoughtful attentive careful watchful alert reliable inspired inventive resourceful ingenious productive exciting energetic lively vigorous bouncy active joyful blissful pleased ecstatic cheery sane rational sensible reasonable normal complete capable genuine inspiring proud approachable peaceful honest giving nurturing accomplished whole perfect undivided achiever great confident compassionate content humble unassuming happy satisfied comfortable at ease relaxed able knowledgeable skilled proficient expert adept rich wealthy affluent prosperous full gorgeous valuable abundant fruitful powerful deep prolific understanding dynamic useful helpful constructive beneficial positive functional worthwhile

Now count the number of words you circled in Step 1: Your Total Potential Score.

Step 2: Now circle the words below that describe how you actually are at present.

Pretty attractive beautiful cute nice-looking appealing cool sweet spiritual wise nice friendly faithful leader strong supportive moral ethical principled good honest decent warm loving tender warmhearted demonstrative caring kind affectionate cordial hospitable welcoming amiable cheerful passionate fiery enthusiastic zealous arrogant egocentric altruistic sympathetic humane selfless philanthropic smart dependent free gentle thoughtful domineering submissive autonomous creative compassionate self-sufficient private liberated conventional objective elegant clever stylish intelligent quick charming tidy neat thoughtful attentive careful watchful alert reliable inspired inventive resourceful ingenious productive exciting energetic lively vigorous bouncy active joyful blissful pleased ecstatic cheery sane rational sensible reasonable normal complete capable genuine inspiring proud approachable peaceful honest giving nurturing accomplished whole perfect undivided achiever great confident compassionate content humble unassuming happy satisfied comfortable at ease relaxed able knowledgeable skilled proficient expert adept rich wealthy affluent prosperous full gorgeous valuable abundant fruitful powerful deep prolific understanding dynamic useful helpful constructive beneficial positive functional worthwhile

Your Actual Self Score.

Step 3: The Congruency Score
(Actual Self Score/Total Potential Score) * 100

If your score is 1 to 34 percent: You are living in your fictional self. Your personal truth and self-concept have been seriously damaged and dis- torted. You are wasting precious life energy. Your power is infected with fictional concepts and your efforts are misdirected to goals that are not your own.
If your score is 90 to 100 percent: You are operating in your full potential range most of the time, finding happiness and joy from within. You are fulfilling your mission as you see it and probably have good mental health.

WHAT'S HOLDING YOU BACK?

The good news is that now that you are becoming aware of all that you can be, you can continue on the journey toward authenticity with more power and motivation.
Fear of change is common currency among human beings. And not only are you fearful of changing, others have all sorts of fears about you changing.
The ruts we get into, no matter how damaging or limiting, are at least familiar and predictable. Stepping up and out of those ruts is scary.

What fears have kept you from changing in the past?
What kind of fear do you expect to feel when you change?
respond to these two questions as they relate to the key word:

What common themes do you see? Fear of losing? Not being loved or respected? Fear of failure or of aging?
demand a commitment of heart and soul.

THINK ABOUT IT

Take a moment right now to look back over the questions in this section and the answers you gave to them. After you've done this, consider what new insights you have gained in the process.
write a paragraph about what you've discovered.


3 - YOUR SELF-CONCEPT