Self-Analysis Exercise

“It is always our own self that we find at the end of the journey. The sooner we face that self, the better.”- Ella Maillart

Recently, I carried out an exercise for self-analysis. I sent a message to 50 of my close friends from my contact list asking their opinion on ‘What I am good at’ and ‘What I am not good at’ from three different categories. Only 26% of the group replied. I had categorized the group into three segments, the first group above my intelligence level irrespective of age, the second group almost the same intelligence, and the third group below my intelligence level. No prior comments to the first group. Some prior instructions were given to the second group to be neutral. Specific instructions were given to the third group and told that they are important and have very intelligent thinking. Most of the first group people ignored the message and replied at their comfortable time. Some of the second group people commented, “What is this drama?” but replied. 90% of the third group replied. 3% of the whole group told they cannot assess. 65% of the people did not comment on ‘What I am not good at’

I sent a pdf copy of my book ‘Build Better Version of Yourself’ to all the individuals who replied but at the same time I informed them through my status, “If anybody replied but did not get the copy of the book, let me know!” Immediately 4% replied, of course, I sent the book to them also. The whole exercise was completed within 24 hours but I received amazing data about my psychological analysis and introspection of my niche that was required for the book which I am writing at present. I recommend carrying a similar exercise with your close friends without any prejudice. You can mark your day as the ‘first day for the rest of your life.’ We generally like the comments which we are good at but we undeniably do not like comments on which we are not good at. But the fact remains a fact. The negative remark or criticism is an outcome of our past behavior with them.

Get Rid of Your Awful Habits

It is easy to evaluate others but it is very difficult to access ourselves. The identification of our unproductive habits is not perceived unless they are mentioned by others. A more honest assessment of multiple aspects required actions involving self, others, and the world around you to predetermined accuracy.

In one of the motivational seminars, a speaker emphasized vegetarianism and asked to imagine a situation as following,

“Suppose if some fierce-looking, ugly, enormous and huge figured creatures existed. They broke the rooftop of your home and picked up your two kids and started eating like cucumber. You could not do anything because they were enormous in size and also there was no effect of weapons on them. What could be your mental status? When you are eating chickens, the same thing happens to mother chicken.”

The narration of the story was imaginary but most of the non-vegetarians left non-vegetarian food for the rest of their lives. Animal meat is a good source of protein but according to a 2010 study[1], consuming a large amount of red meat and high-fat dairy is said to increase the risk of coronary heart disease. A 2018 study also showed that long-term consumption of red meat can increase trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), a gut-generated chemical that is linked to heart disease. Findings also showed that reducing or eliminating dietary red meat reversed the effects.

Make today your first day for the rest of your life.

The psychosomatic structure of humans is such that the physical growth of body is uninterrupted but the growth of brain requires some specific training and exercise. The mind does not grow on its own. With good readings and listening to the speeches of experienced individuals, we can change our mindset to the desired level. You can meet legendries who possess great attributes and values. The amazing humans like William Shakespeare, Leo Tolstoy, Charles Dickens, or Mahatma Gandhi are not present on this earth today but you can pick up their great works and lifelong experiences of decades and apply them to your life. Make weakness your task. The best way to address a weakness is to find someone who already is great at it and team up with them. Employ your strength as a pillar of your success. Convert your fears into opportunities. In fact, you have to work on yourself for a better version just like that of a car model that is coming out with new and distinguished features almost every year.

Allison Abrams, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and psychotherapist in New York has given eight steps to improve our self-esteem.

1. Be mindful.

We can’t change anything if we don’t recognize that there is something to change. By simply becoming aware of our negative self-talk, we begin to distance ourselves from the feelings it brings up. It enables us to identify them even lesser. Without this awareness, we can easily fall into the trap of believing our self-limiting talks, and as meditation teacher Allan Lokos says, “Don’t believe everything you think. Thoughts are just that — thoughts.”

2. Change the story

We all have a narrative or a story we’ve created about ourselves that shapes our self-perceptions, upon which our core self-image is based. “Sometimes automatic negative thoughts like ‘you’re fat’ or ‘you’re lazy’ can be repeated in your mind so often that you start to believe they are true,” says Jessica Koblenz, Psy.D. “These thoughts are learned, which means they can be unlearned. You can start with affirmations. What do you wish you believed about yourself? Repeat these phrases to yourself every day.”

3. Avoid falling into the compare-and-despair rabbit hole.

“Two key things I emphasize are to practice acceptance and stop comparing yourself to others,” says psychotherapist Kimberly Hershenson, LMSW. “I emphasize that just because someone else appears happy on social media or even in person doesn’t mean they are happy. Comparisons only lead to negative self-talk, which leads to anxiety and stress.” Feelings of low self-worth can negatively affect your mental health as well as other areas in your life, such as work, relationships, and physical health.

4. Channel your inner rock star.

Albert Einstein said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” We all have our strengths and weaknesses. Somebody might be a brilliant musician, but a dreadful cook. Quality defines its core worth. Recognize what your strengths are and the feelings of confidence they engender, especially in times of doubt. It’s easy to make generalizations when you “mess up” or “fail” at something, but reminding yourself of ways you rock offers a more realistic perspective of yourself.

5. Exercise.

Many studies have shown a correlation between exercise and higher self-esteem, as well as improved mental health. “Exercising creates empowerment both physical and mental,” says Debbie Mandel, author of ‘Addicted to Stress’, “especially weight lifting where you can calibrate the accomplishments. Exercise organizes your day around self-care.” She suggests dropping a task daily from your endless to-do list for the sole purpose of relaxation or doing something fun, and seeing how that feels. Other forms of self-care, such as proper nutrition and sufficient sleep, have also been shown to have positive effects on one’s self-perception.

6. Do unto others.

David Simonsen, Ph.D., LMFT, suggests volunteering to help those who may be less fortunate. “Being of service to others helps take you out of your head. When you are able to help someone else, it makes you less focused on your own issues.”

He agrees:

“What I found is that when someone achieved more goals in life upon which they can be proud, then it will be easier for them to recognize their worth. Doing things that one can respect about is the key that I have found that works to raise one’s worth. It is something tangible. Helping at a homeless shelter, animal shelter, giving time at a big brother’s or sister’s organization, etc. These are things that mean something and give value not only to oneself, but to someone else as well.”

7. Forgiveness.

Is there someone in your life you haven’t yet forgiven? Like an ex-partner, a family member or yourself? By holding on to the grudges or resentment, we keep ourselves stuck in a cycle of negativity. If we haven’t forgiven ourselves, shame will keep us in the same loop.

“Forgiving self and others have been found to improve self-esteem,” says Schiraldi, “Perhaps it connects us with our innately loving nature and promotes an acceptance of people, despite our flaws.” He refers to the Buddhist meditation on forgiveness, which can be practiced at any time: “If I have hurt or harmed anyone, knowingly or unknowingly, I ask for forgiveness. If anyone has hurt or harmed me, knowingly or unknowingly, I forgive them. For the ways, I have hurt myself, knowingly or unknowingly, I offer forgiveness.”

8. Remember that you are not your circumstances.

Finally, learning to differentiate between your circumstances and who you are is the key to self-worth. “Recognizing inner worth, and loving one’s imperfect self provides the secure foundation for growth,” says Schiraldi. “With that security, one is free to grow with enjoyment, not fear of failure — because failure doesn’t change core worth.”

We are all born with infinite potential and equal worth as human beings. Therefore, with hard work and self-compassion, self-destructive thoughts and beliefs can be unlearned. Taking the steps outlined above is a start in the effort to increase self-worth, or as Schiraldi says, “recognize self-worth. It already exists in every person.”

Key Takeaways

1. Assign a project of self-analysis and submit it to yourself for great results.

2. Better to recognize yourself as early as possible before somebody else does.

[1] Source:

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Former aircraft engineer IAF, Retired Branch Manager SBI, Psychologist, Best Selling Author & Defence Recruitment Trainer