When I was studying in school, I hardly ever did much introspection.
My thinking and desires were very malleable, in the sense that outside forces could easily shape it to a large degree whether that was the movies and TV shows I watched, social media or even the opinions of my two older brothers.
I could also feel the claustrophobic effect of peer pressure and social conditioning influencing how I behaved and expressed myself.
It was only once I moved out of my house and went to college in another city that I willingly began spending time alone and getting in touch with myself on a deeper level.
In the process, I discovered things about myself I never knew and gained a much better understanding of myself.
When you are not clear about what you want, outside voices can have a telling impact on you, often detrimentally.
Many of us excel at distracting ourselves, to avoid looking within. As the famous psychiatrist, Carl Jung remarked “People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own souls.”
Many of us would much rather prefer to amuse ourselves with our daily fix of entertainment through social media, news, movies, TV shows and intoxicants.
The ugly truth behind our craving for constant stimulation is simple; most of us can’t stand to be alone by ourselves without doing anything, even if only for a little while.
Spending time in silence or doing nothing makes many of us feel restless and uncomfortable and therefore we try to avoid it at all costs.
Learning to be comfortable spending time alone by yourself without any external stimulation may seem pointless, but it can reap rich rewards in your life.
Time and again, I have observed that in moments of quiet introspection, a higher intelligence can communicate with you.
Living in today’s world, where we are constantly bombarded with information and opinions, it’s important to tune out from the noise of society so that we can get in touch with our intuition.
Introspection doesn’t necessarily need to come in the form of meditating or journaling. The key here is to have some time alone to yourself where you won’t be disturbed.
One of my friends who self-admittedly finds it difficult to spend time alone was telling me recently that when he drove all the way from Pune to Kerala alone, it gave him plenty of time to introspect and found it helpful to get mentally sorted when he was going through a tough time.
Awareness is the first step towards creating positive change, and self-awareness is developed through introspection.
To quote Carl Jung again, “Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will rule your life and you will call it fate.”
By deeply examining your thoughts, feelings, beliefs, triggers, childhood and social conditioning it can give often give you startling insights on what makes you think and behave a certain way.
Only by first becoming aware of the thoughts, actions and behavioural patterns that are holding you back can you let them go.
Spending time in introspection will fast track your personal growth, provide you with invaluable insights and help you discard unempowering conditioning and it’s well worth devoting time for it.
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