I’m sure people say you’re good at your job, you’re competent, you’re smart, and you’re pretty funny. How do you know if what they are saying is true or whether they are just being nice? How does a person know themselves, really?
We often see ourselves in the reflection of others, a mirroring of the judgments of those around us. This is called reflected appraisal. Reflected appraisal refers to how we develop an image of ourselves from the way people respond to us and from the way we think others view us.
It may also be worthwhile to take some assessments and personality inventories to understand yourself better.
Also, you can review your experiences and the impact those have had on your personality, knowledge, and skill development. Think about the years you were growing up. What did you like to read? What did you like to watch on TV? Who were your friends? What are your memories concerning your neighborhood? What do you recall from elementary, middle, or high school? What were your favorite classes? What clubs were you in? What activities did you participate in and with whom? What sports did you play? Did you volunteer?
Now think about all of the education and work experience you have acquired. List every award, certificate, plaque, trophy, ribbon, license, talent, ability, skill, acts of kindness, volunteer activities, anything you have or should have been pat on the back job well done.
Take a walk down memory lane and retrace your steps. Review your progress and growth, and recognize your talents.
In summary, take some personality tests, talk with some trusted coworkers and friends, and recognize your skills and talents. Self-Awareness is the first step in improving emotional intelligence. Take some time to get to know yourself.
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