College Skills: Self-Awareness

Let’s Become Self-Aware Together!


Darlene Mariano

“Whereas the average individuals often have not the slightest idea of what they are, of what they want, of what their own opinions are, self-actualizing individuals have superior awareness of their own impulses, desires, opinions, and subjective reactions in general.”

-Abraham Maslow

College students nowadays have very active lifestyles. Some hold a few jobs while trying to deal with school work, family and friends, and trying to figure out their future. All of which can distract college students from their classes.  Being aware of your goals, strengths and weaknesses, and social interactions can be a guide to being successful in not only college, but also in life. By definition, self-awareness is basically having the knowledge of oneself. In having more knowledge about oneself, the more success you will have in the future.

Becoming more self-aware about ones goals can help students in college by allowing them to focus their academic behaviors. It’s a well-known fact that sometimes, students wait to the last minute to get school materials completed. Let’s say you had a paper due the next day. Did you just start your essay or are you now just about to begin? Have you found resources to back up your materials? If not, then as stated in “Components in a Comprehensive Definition of College Readiness” by author Conley D. T, you need to have better priorities because by doing this, you do not have enough time to “reflect on what worked and what needed improvement” in your assignments (Conley 16). Setting goals for yourself is a good way to start becoming more self-aware. The idea of becoming more self-aware as stated by Ashley, Greg C., and Roni Reiter-Palmon in, “Self-Awareness And The Evolution Of Leaders: The Need For A Better Measure Of Self-Awareness,” will help students in the long run because they can have the ability to think about the “changes required to move towards a better future” (Ashley 2). For example, students can now be aware of what they need to accomplish in order to reach a certain career. In doing so, as stated by Nasir, Rohany and Lin Lee Shiang in “The Relationship Between Self-Concept And Career Awareness Amongst Students,” students are more inclined to look into the requirements of their careers, what they need to do in order to move up in a career ladder, and ultimately give them “some form of perspective at an early age” ( Nasir 194).

To become self-aware, one might also need to perform a self-evaluation. This “evaluation” would serve as a way for you to figure out your strengths and weaknesses. For example, if you find that you don’t like being in a fast paced and stressful environment, filled with long hours, then maybe working as a chef in a restaurant wouldn’t be an ideal job for you. However, if you’re very social and enjoy having direct contact with customers, then a job such as a waiter or a host might be more suited for you. Figuring out your strengths and weaknesses might take some time, so don’t be too critical of yourself as you go through the process. As Morin, Alain states in “Self-Awareness Part 1: Definition, Measures, Effects, Functions, And Antecedents,” students should be willing to “seek the state of self-awareness,” (Morin 811) so that positive outcomes can come out of your self-evaluation. It is not always easy trying to figure out your strengths and weaknesses, but the more you keep trying to figure them out, the more you’ll end up finding a path to follow for your future.

Moving forward to a particular goal such as being the head chef of a restaurant takes hard work. Something as demanding as that job requires you to not only be prepared to take on the responsibility, but it might also require you change your social interactions. Think about the people around you now, and figure out the ones that will encourage you to move forward towards your goal and the ones that could ultimately hold you back. For example, the people who can distract you from schoolwork or prevent you from getting to work on time might be the people that you need to lessen your time being with. Not only will you need to be willing to change your social life, you might also need to learn how to speak with business executives. Being able to change the way you interact with people will be hard. It’s difficult to break a habit such as saying “Yo!” or “Whaddup?” but its going to be a change that will be worth it, if you can create better connections by being able to communicate with people who have the ability to recommend or better yet, offer you a job.

Self-awareness is something that everyone in college should get an idea of because it can give you the chance to acknowledge your goals, your strengths and weaknesses, and it can help you with changing the way you interact with people. It also gives you the chance to really sit down and make sure that the people you want in your life are the ones that are helping you to move forward. Being more aware of yourself can never do you any harm, so try it. Take some time to really think about your future because the people who don’t at least try it, can be lost. These people, the ones who haven’t started to think of what they want for themselves, can often not know what they want for the future and they can just float around still trying to figure that out. Start becoming self-aware and at first, help yourself by becoming college ready and then build your future goals from there.

Works Cited

Ashley, Greg C., and Roni Reiter-Palmon. “Self-Awareness And The Evolution Of Leaders:

The Need For A Better Measure Of Self-Awareness.” Journal Of Behavioral &

Applied Management 14.1 (2012): 2-17. Academic Search Complete. Web. 22

Sept. 2013.

Conley, D. T. “Components in a Comprehensive Definition of College

Readiness.” Redefining College Readiness. Vol. 3. Eugene: Educational Policy

Improvement Center, 2007. 12-17. Print.

“Inspirational Quotes Self Awareness.” entheos. n.p. n.d. Web. 22 Sept. 2013.

Morin, Alain. “Self-Awareness Part 1: Definition, Measures, Effects, Functions, And

Antecedents.” Social & Personality Psychology Compass 5.10 (2011): 807-823.

Academic Search Complete. Web. 22 Sept. 2013.

Nasir, Rohany, and Lin Lee Shiang. “The Relationship Between Self-Concept And Career

Awareness Amongst Students.” Asian Social Science 9.1 (2013): 193-197.

Academic Search Complete. Web. 22 Sept. 2013.


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