Self-Discovery Through Mindfulness: A Journey of Inner Exploration

CoachHub · 11 January 2023 · 5 min read

When it comes to personal and professional growth, the first step is to gain a deeper understanding of yourself. Becoming aware of your thoughts and emotions allows you to understand your beliefs and desires. When you know what you value and what you want you can make informed career choices that reflect your true ambitions and greatest strengths. 

There is no greater practise that will contribute to your personal and professional growth than a practise of self-discovery. Such a practise will inform your choices and highlight the path to reaching your full potential. 

There are many ways to practise self-discovery such as increasing your self-awareness, becoming more present and observing your internal world through mindfulness practises. Working with a professional, such as a digital coach, can be instrumental in highlighting your blindspots and receiving expert guidance to ensure your success.

What is Self-Discovery?

Self-discovery is a process of becoming aware of the mechanics and processes of our internal world. This worthy journey allows us to cultivate a greater understanding of how we think, why we feel, what we believe and what we desire. 

When the internal players of our thoughts and emotions are left unsupervised and under the influence of subconscious programming they tend to destruct and distort our reality. We do not pay attention to what we think and feel so we have no agency over the perceptions and attachments we form. We then live as a puppet on the strings of our belief structures and deeply rooted attachments. 

When our attention is never brought within we cannot know who we truly are. We cannot see how the way we think and feel is shaping our performance and perception of our external reality. To develop an ‘inward gaze’ is to discover the many patterns of internal forces that have been running your existence. 

Through introspection, you can become aware of what patterns are at play. You can identify the disempowering pattern causing external conflict and take steps to alter the thoughts and emotions associated with them. We can also unravel what feels true and meaningful to us at a deeper level and begin to live by these truths, creating a more authentic and enriching life experience. 

An individual who enjoys a practise of self-discovery is equipped to show up in their personal and professional life with heightened self-awareness and an understanding of their needs and desires. This acts as a solid foundation providing stability to their internal state during times of external chaos. This knowledge allows individuals to make choices that serve their highest needs and to engage in practises that contribute to their growth and actualization.  

When workers know themselves, they know what career choices to make and what directions to avoid. This makes for an engaged employee who is passionate and invested in their role. With heightened self-awareness, we make choices that suit our inclinations and strengths and are more likely to succeed in our careers

journey-of-self-discovery

Mindfulness and Self-Discovery

Mindfulness is the vehicle that will drive your practise of self-discovery. It is the exact technique that will allow you to observe your inner movements and discover your inner motivations. The first step in the process of self-discovery is to develop the skill of mindfulness.

Mindfulness is an innate quality that we all possess. It is our ability to be present and aware of what is going on around us. We are practising mindfulness when we are fully present in whatever we are doing in that moment. We are practising mindfulness when we are in our awareness, in observation mode and witnessing (without evaluating) what is happening within us and in front of us. 

A mindful state occurs when the light of our awareness is stronger than the pull of our minds. When we are in a state of detachment from thought and are able to reach a heightened state of awareness. 

Erika Carlson of Washington University highlights how two of the most crucial aspects of mindfulness, attention and nonjudgemental observation, can help us to “overcome the major barriers to knowing ourselves”. Mindfulness facilitates a healthy internal exploration as it allows you to go within and observe what is going on while remaining separate from the internal chaos you may unravel. 

When you turn your awareness inward you expose yourself to many harmful tendencies that used to go unnoticed. This may lead to increased self-criticism and negative judgement. It is important to be able to watch without judgement and have compassion for yourself at every point of the journey. Mindfulness will allow you to cultivate awareness while maintaining a neutral position. 

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Mindfulness exercises for self-discovery:

  • Awareness of thoughts
  • Acceptance and allowance of emotions
  • Reflective journaling
  • Awareness of breath
  • Body scans
  • Observing others without judgement
  • Observing impulses without indulging in them

Digital Coaching and Self-Discovery

Working with a digital coach is an excellent way to accelerate your progress toward greater self-awareness. A professional coach can help you to identify your ambitions, limiting beliefs and disempowering patterns. A coach can then provide a tailored program to overcome your biggest challenges and harness your strengths. This process can be done from any location at any time. 

Working with a coach can be a huge source of motivation and accountability when you lose momentum and need someone to keep you on track. Coaching can also provide tools and resources to increase self-awareness and provide tailored exercises to assist you in self-discovery.

Practical Tips for Using Digital Coaching for Self-Discovery

Incorporating digital coaching into a self-discovery practise can be a very simple yet incredibly rewarding investment. Consider the following tips when using coaching for self-discovery:

  • Choose a coach whose specialty aligns with your goals
  • Define your goals with your coach 
  • Establish practises and exercises for self-discovery
  • Highlight your core motivations for self-discovery 
  • Stay consistent to maximise the benefits of digital coaching 
  • Establish open and honest communication with your coach 
  • Define a process of accountability and ways to track your progress 

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Conclusion

The importance of self-discovery for personal and professional growth cannot be underestimated. Self-discovery leads to heightened self-awareness which facilitates good decision-making and effective self-regulation. Mindfulness and digital coaching are two excellent tools to consider along the journey. Whatever direction you take, remember to remain compassionate and to always bring enjoyment into the process. It may be easy to fall into criticism and resistance which will only hold you in harmful thought patterns. Practising mindfulness and investing in a professional coach can help keep you away from such traps and significantly accelerate your progress.

Cathy Stapleton
Cathy is an Irish writer based in Berlin, Germany who is passionate about using words to inspire growth. As a certified mindfulness facilitator and performance coach, Cathy aims to create work that helps people connect with themselves and heighten their awareness. When she is not writing she is usually running in nature, meditating or contemplating an existential crisis.

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