Sometimes, it’s difficult to see your place in the world. Western society teaches us that we are individuals are who separate from others, the environment, and the cosmos. Greater emphasis is placed on uniqueness. This isn’t bad. However, there is a balance between being an individual and acknowledging that you’re part of a whole.
To find that balance, you must get in tune with who you are as a social being.
Human beings thrive biologically, psychologically, and spiritually on human interaction. While you may sometimes fantasize about living the life of a hermit, your highest self seeks to expand and experience inwardly and outwardly.
Life is ultimately an experience of self, according to ancient wisdom traditions. This self resides in everything—and is everything. This ever-present self is so obvious, that it’s actually well concealed. Through self-exploration and mindfulness, it is possible to see yourself in others. Once you’ve become more self aware, you can become a more caring, compassionate person, and a loving influence to all.
Remember that dealing with others is part of self-discovery and experience. Once you understand this, you’ll be able to let go of ego-based insecurities and your interaction with the other person will be enhanced.
Follow these five tips to build an awareness of self that encourages compassion, generosity, and love towards others.
Check Your Prejudices and Pre-Judgments
Perception is everything in life. On the path of enlightenment, emphasis is placed on fine tuning how we process the world in order to find our higher nature. When it comes to people, learning to interact with self-awareness is key. Think about how many times you may have pre-judged a person only to be surprised by something the person does, says, or brings to a situation. Have you ever looked at someone’s appearance and allowed that impression to affect how you dealt with him or her?
Even as you evolve, it may be difficult to completely stop this human tendency of prejudice. Instead of fighting it, witness it. Remember that your perception has a heavy influence on your thoughts, actions, interpretations, and interaction with the other person. If you go into a conversation or social contact knowing this, you can better tune yourself to a frequency of love and kindness.
Even during negative interactions, it’s good to look within and find the personal source or contribution to any negativity. The more pleasant you are within, the more amiable everyone else will be. Try to look upon the world with love and compassion as often as possible.
Look at Yourself Through Their Eyes
This should not be confused with normal self-consciousness. Some of us struggle with being too concerned about what others think about us. This can cause anxiety and stress on your being.
Instead, try to be mindful of yourself in a positive way. By being honest and genuinely your best self to others, you’re bound to receive the best from others. This doesn’t mean you’ll never have conflict with others. But when conflict occurs, it will be met with awareness.
Consider the viewpoints of others to help you see yourself—beyond your ego. When this is done properly, you’ll experience greater levels of understanding, humanity, and the ability to not take yourself so seriously. If you say or do something awkward, laugh at yourself. In doing so, you allow others to feel more comfortable in your presence. This comfort is reflected and shared, creating a pleasant and congenial interaction, even in temporary casual encounters.
Non-judgement is essential to all spiritual development. The beauty of practicing non-judgement is that it’s a double-sided blessing. By being more accepting of others, you’re showing kindness to yourself.
As you cultivate the ability to see your self in others, keep in mind that you’re expanding your concept of self. The reflection you’re learning to see is not your current view of yourself. This is an important point. Acceptance of the differences in others opens you up to explore your own consciousness without limiting constrictions.
You may have heard the phrase “Where attention goes, the energy flows.” There’s evidence of this in every aspect of our lives.
If your goal is self-exploration and expansion, be aware that you will spend an increasing amount of time witnessing. Your inner awareness is integral to your growth. When dealing with others, practice tuning into your inner world. Notice any fluctuations in mood, emotions, or thoughts that may come along with your various interactions.
This practice is important because it helps you understand the relationship between your inner life and your outer world. There is a subtle relationship at play at all times between your inner self and others. You cannot come to an understanding of this interplay without witnessing it.
Pay more attention to others as well, especially when speaking with a person or group of people. This is not only kind to the other person; it also makes you more present. It takes a lot of attention to see the unity between yourself and others. So be as present as possible. You may be surprised at the commonality and reflections of yourself that you see.
Get Outside of Your Head
You may experience an unexpected, paradoxical reaction as you progress in your self-exploration. As odd as it may seem, there comes a point where knowing your self means forgetting the self you know—or selflessness.
Self-evolution is enhanced by your ability to step into the unknown. Certain aspects of your being cannot be expressed when you’re focused only on yourself. This is why it’s good for your well-being to allow yourselves to experience new things and people. Your consciousness is always seeking to expand; the more you let it flow, the better.
Other people can play a major role in this expansion. Meet new people, open yourself to different opinions, and enjoy the diversity of humanity.
We are unique pieces of the same underlying consciousness, according to Vedic wisdom. Open yourself to the unknown sides of your true self. Strive to no longer limit yourself to what you already know—and are.