To The Future Leaders: Be Sure To Become Aware Of Yourself And Others

Leadership Lesson: You can’t begin establishing a strong foundation of effectiveness or success, without a deep understanding of who you are and of those around you in your various environments.

In this previous post, I introduced this current series which covers a top-ten list of ideas I had provided to students at Quest 2017, a one-day summit hosted at Southern Connecticut State University by Connecticut’s Chapter of Prospanica, in partnership with its community and corporate partners. The annual event is filled with motivational presentations, speakers, and workshops providing students with tools for the next chapter in their lives.

The list is made up of tips students should consider as they continue on in their life, work, and careers and is made up of some of the top items on The Self 60.

While the items on The Self 60 tend to be more specific, these items allow for the lesson to be broadened and more encompassing.

In each post I provide general information about the item and a breakdown of what it is, why it’s important, where to get it, and why the item made this top-ten list.

In this post, the item I’ll be breaking down is…

Develop Your Awareness – Of Self & Others

General Info / What it is…

This item represents the ability to figure out who we are and take in what’s around us. It’s the ability to slow our observations down to effectively translate what we see.

Too often, we’re in reactive mode, dealing with things as they come, handling them superficially, reading the surface instead of understanding the depth of what we come across. This may even be the case with ourselves. We may only demonstrate to the world what it expects of us, while we move forward on cruise control, forfeiting great opportunities to open up who we are to others.

But we need to see more than the façades in our environment while expressing more of the value beneath our own façade to the world.

Why it’s important…

This item is key because it asks us to look beyond what’s shown and analyze below the surface. We can’t be successful or move forward by only reflecting or accepting what is seen. There needs to be more understanding of who we are and what’s around us.

By becoming truly aware of who we are and of others, we can see more than if we were in a passive mode. We actually stop and smell the roses. We note the details. We take stock of the unseen. We may end up seeing, hearing, and understanding details more than others around us.

And that’s the advantage to that awareness. That’s what sets us apart from our competitors. We provide more value because we choose to seek out and can find more value.

Where to get it…

It’s inside you. From the inside-out, it’s understanding who you are, what your values are, and what you can provide to the world.

It’s also around you. From the outside-in, it’s taking a moment to understand others and figuring out both what they truly need and what they can offer.

It’s having, at the very least, an open mind to read the environment and those in it deeper than anyone else can. Many issues resolved through coaching start with an additional and heightened awareness of ourselves and of others. The tools are there to get better and refine ourselves. We just need to listen for them and seek them out.

Why It’s A Top-10 Off The Self 60…

This is a marquee item off of the Self 60 because we can’t approach, improve, or resolve anything, either in the environment/with others or ourselves, without taking a deep reading of what’s there below the surface.

Through self-awareness and awareness of others, we know what makes the foundation up before we build off of it. We realize and can harness skills, value, and attributes, either in ourselves or others, which may go unseen by others.


Awareness. Heightened senses. An open mind. It’s all about attention. Attention to details and the inner-workings. That’s what sets people apart – how they dive deep below the surface (or position) to get to what someone really needs (their goal) and can offer. It’s the basis for mediating, brokering, and fostering connections.

Related: Coaching & Mediation: Cousins Continuously Realizing & Harnessing Value

People too often leave so much on the table. We all do. It’s up to each of us instead to seek out the best value in others, in the environment, and ourselves.

Much in the same way true work productivity is left untapped in the workplace, so too do we leave too much personal ability untapped.

Know what it is you and others bring to an environment, whether good or bad, and recognize when you need to adjust the approaches to provide the best, for your benefit and that of others.

The Top Ten (in no particular order)

  1. Find your Driver(s) & Motivation(s)
  2. All Your Experiences Structure Your Path Forward
  3. Get An Accountability Partner
  4. Position Yourself For Your Success
  5. Your Worth & Value – Know It / Build It / Provide It / Live It
  6. Face Your Weaknesses & Fears
  7. Always Keep Learning
  8. Develop Your Awareness – Of Self & Others
  9. Be Part Of & Contribute To Your Community
  10. Do Not Wait For Life To Come To You


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