Inside/Out Self-awareness

If self-awareness is a journey, insights are the “aha” moments along the way. They’re the fuel powering the souped-up sports car on the highway of self-awareness: with them, we can step on the gas pedal; without them, we’re stranded on the side of the road.

Eurich, Tasha. Insight . Crown. Kindle Edition.

According to Tasha Eurich, we learn from “alarm clock” events, situations that challenge us with new roles, rules, losses, trauma, as well as small mundane insights. These, “aha” moments or “alarm clock” events are life opportunities to learn balancing inside and outside self-awareness.

Doesn’t sound pleasant at all! Who likes alarm clocks??

Covid-19 is certainly an alarm clock event, a window of time that confuses our perspective on ourselves. We infect each other, not only with viruses but with joy and sadness too.

What does this alarm clock wake me up to? That I am connected to my neighbors more intimately than I ever imagined, I am vulnerable yet capable, isolated yet not alone, that I decide who I am every moment, with every decision to go for a walk, wear a mask or not, cook at home, order out, buy meat, read a book or binge watch cooking shows. This is partly why I am exhausted. Self-awareness, constant balanced decision making is tiresome. Awareness of the framed window of existence that I am is exhausting. This alarm clock event interrupts false comforts of regularity and certainty. I don’t know the “new” pattern. None of us know.

Because I don’t know, I have to look outside myself. Reach out to you, for example, reading this right now, passing by my virtual window, even though you don’t know. Solidarity in loss.

If we were are all windows. How easy it would be to just close the shutters! How horrible it would be to miss out on the view, sunshine, moonlight, noise, breeze, reflection, and connection?

I know this self-awareness/social-awareness is a luxury.

I don’t know what I’m learning right now, sitting here social distancing on a beautiful sunny Sunday, but somehow I feel that I’m learning something important. I imagine you are too.

May learn we about ourselves together as the alarm clock buzzes,


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