Impatience can ruin a parent-child moment. But how can you strive to be more patient if you aren’t aware that you need to?

Empathy is one of the keys to growing the bond with your child. But how can you exercise empathy more consistently if you don’t realize that you’ve missed many opportunities to be empathetic?

What can you learn about yourself? Like all the people around you, you’re a rich and unique combination of many aspects of being, including: your feelings, thoughts and memories; your values, preferences, beliefs and biases; your desires, motivations, and goals; and your knowledge, skills, habits, strengths, and weaknesses.

The level of your lawareness of these aspects of yourself depends on your willingness to take the time to examine them in detail. For example, you can ask yourself questions such as:

  • How do I really feel about this?
  • Why am I doing this?
  • “Why do I tend to do it this way?
  • What do I want?
  • What can I change?

Self-awareness means taking time to ask hard questions like these. It means being honest with yourself. There’s a lot to be aware of, so improving self-awareness could involve many efforts of self-discovery. As you reflect and increase your self-awareness, you’ll make gains in personal growth, selfacceptance, self-management, and decision making.

The truth is, increasing yourself-knowledge will not only help you improve the way you parent, it can make you more effective in nearly every aspect of your life. It will improve the way you relate to your child and others as you deal with challenges with greater confidence and resilience.

For more insights and recommendations about SELF-AWARENESS, read Chapter 1 in Grow Strong Character.