Cindy Novotny

Be Aware!

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AWARENESS; Awareness is the ability to directly know and perceive, to feel, or to be cognizant of events. More broadly, it is the state of being conscious of something.

It doesn’t matter if I am working with owners, executives, entrepreneurs or front-line employees, it is amazing how few people are able to self-reflect.  You must be completely comfortable in your own skin but understand how you come across to others.  Being arrogant, condescending, and egotistical demonstrates your lack of confidence.

Being aware of how you affect others will dramatically help you grow in your organization.  Lately I have been very aware of my team members and how they engage with others.  I challenge everyone on my team to look at how they contribute to the team, affect the team and what the overall goals should be. 

This awareness can be very humbling to some who don’t realize that a lack of positivity that comes across when you don’t smile or engage in conversation.  Taking responsibility for your job means that you are aware of where you need help, feedback and coaching so that you are not always stressed out.  Acting as a prima donna who is untouchable also shows a lack of awareness. 

Being aware is systemic.  Your belief systems, your values, and even the way you were raised can cause you to ignore patterns of behavior that may not be that positive.  If you are aware and listen to feedback you will less likely be insecure and become more confident. 

Everyone can improve their self-awareness throughout their life if they want to.  If you seek out feedback and coaching from those closest to you, you will dramatically improve your behavior.  It is liberating to know that you are growing and learning how to get better and what drives people crazy about you.

As a trainer and speaker, I always must be self-aware because I get candid feedback daily from our sessions and keynote speeches.  Did they like what I said?  Did I come across genuine?  Did they learn something new?  If we receive any negative feedback, we cannot discount that.  We must speak to our clients and ask exactly what the feedback meant and how we can improve in the future.  Most people don’t have the guts to take this head on, and yet we do it, daily. 

Focusing on self-awareness is empowering and you should never fear what the reflection tells you or how deep you need to go.  Without actions to support your self-reflection results, you might as well have not asked for the feedback in the first place.

Start working on self-improvement by first digging deep into your motivation.   Why should you even care?  What will the awareness help me improve at?  How can I empower those around me to be more aware as well?