3 Simple Steps to Launch Your Self-Discovery Journey

Jordan Tarver
December 7, 2021

How often do you stop and think about what you want to do with your life? If you're like me, then you do it often. Understanding what you want to do with your life is less challenging when you focus on self-discovery—discovering who you are. While the journey of self-discovery is an ongoing process, meaning there is no final destination, there are some tactics you can use to start.

In this article, you'll learn of the three pillars of self-discovery from my forthcoming book, You Deserve This Sh!t: Flood Your Life With Consciousness, Step Into Your Power, and Become the Best Version of Yourself (get on the waitlist below with everyone else!). These are the pillars I developed and used to discover who I am and what I want in life. They can do the same for you, too.

What Is Self-discovery?

Self-discovery is a process of understanding your own character and becoming aware of your potential and motives.  It's not a journey to discover someone new, it’s a journey to break down the barriers within yourself to discover who your soul always knew you were.

If you discover yourself,  you’re able to tap into your passions, figure out your life’s purpose—the reason you get up in the morning—and learn what motivates you. Ultimately, discovering who you are and what you want to do allows you to unlock the best version of yourself.

Why Your Journey of Self-discovery Is Important

Without discovering yourself—understanding your purpose, passions, potential, and motives—you’ll never achieve something better than what you have now. You’ll choose to live a life inundated by unconsciousness and the pain that comes along with it. So, the ball is in your court, what are you going to choose?

Three Pillars of Self-discovery

One purpose of this article is to teach you the three pillars of self-discovery—awareness, comfort zones, and intentional living—you’ll need these tools for your journey. Learning about these pillars will help you discover who you are and aid you in the process of becoming the best version of yourself. When you discover who you are, you’ll be set free of taking the wrong paths in life.

1. Awareness

Do you take notice of all that’s happening around you, from significant to seemingly insignificant things? Or, do you let life pass in front of your eyes missing potential opportunities to capitalize on your growth?

Discovering and re-inventing yourself is a whole lot easier when you practice awareness and self-awareness. Awareness is the ability to recognize what’s happening around you. It lets you understand your character, feelings, and what inspires you.

Your awareness will help you begin to realize what moves you physically, emotionally, and mentally. It will most importantly allow you to see what you want to chase and follow. If we want to create change, if we want to design the trajectory of our life, we need to embrace our awareness. That starts now.

Tips to Master Your Awareness

  1.  Start to journal: Journaling is my bread and butter. If you're familiar with my work, you know this is one tool I hope to instill in other people. Journaling lets you uncover areas of your life you didn't know existed, help you become aware of your thoughts, and allows you to self-reflect, which is key to becoming the best version of yourself.
  2.  Look for the small things in life: Practicing mindfulness—the practice of being aware of something—is crucial when mastering your awareness. As you begin to take note of all the small things in life, you’ll begin to open a new door to your awareness and find ways to improve certain areas of your life. Sometimes those seemingly insignificant things can teach you a great deal about yourself and others around you.
  3.  Ask yourself honest (and hard) questions: The right questions are ones that hurt to ask and also hurt to answer. Begin to ask yourself questions about your life, happiness, stress, grief, and actions. This can be a way to learn more about yourself, as it allows you to examine your own actions and motives in life.
  4.  Adapt to your surroundings: As your awareness increases, you’ll start to realize that life may be urging you to move in a specific direction. Take notice of this and evolve with that urge. Don’t resist going where life is asking you to go. Most of the time we hit a growth ceiling because we are too weary of where life wants to take us and choose to remain the same. However, when we let go and adapt to our surroundings we can go to unimaginable places.
  5.  Practice meditation: Similar to journaling, meditation is another way to look inward and learn more about yourself. When we silence our minds, we're able to have profound realizations. We live in an age where you can find endless amounts of guided meditations on YouTube that range in length. That is where I started my mediation journey, and it's the perfect place for you too if you're looking to take this step in your life.

2. Comfort Zones

Your comfort zone is the place you feel most comfortable. It’s a stress-free zone where you know there will be no unexpected surprises or events. Although it’s in our nature to retreat to this zone, it shouldn’t be in our best interest. Exponential personal and professional growth typically happens by putting ourselves in unique situations that will challenge us to become better.

These situations likely never exist in our comfort zone. It may be difficult to understand at first, but it’s crucial to chase something unfamiliar that keeps you on your toes. Constant newness in your life will allow you to adapt to your surroundings and learn how to overcome difficult situations, ones that push you further along in your journey.

Whether you believe it or not, achieving any goal—even the goal of living comfortably—will require you to put yourself in some sort of uncomfortable situation or position. Everything in life begins to flourish outside our comfort zones. That’s where the magic happens

Tips to Become Comfortable With Being Uncomfortable

  1. Build trust with yourself: You are your own biggest critic, which sometimes makes it challenging to live outside your comfort zone. You must build trust within yourself first. To do so, you need to fill your mind with positive self-talk. It’s as simple as that. Tell yourself “I can and I will.” Feed your brain the mental nutrition it needs to realize that you’re not only in control of your destiny, but you trust yourself to stand for uniqueness.
  2. Reject the normal: Grasp the understanding that you need to live the life that you want and not how others think you should live. I’ve come to realize sometimes that in order to do that, you must reject what people perceive as “normal.” Don’t search for acceptance. Surround yourself with genuine people who support your journey, they will accept you for who you are.
  3. Give yourself permission to be the beginner: Don’t get me wrong, being a beginner is never an easy situation. But, you must realize that being a beginner is part of learning anything new. It’s integral to gaining the skills you need to take a craft, hobby, or passion to where you envision it to go. Give yourself permission to be a beginner and begin to understand that it’s in those moments you’ll learn skills that will help shape your path.
  4. Embrace your curiosity: Curiosity is innate within all of us. However, it’s been trained out of us since a young age. As kids, we’re at a curious high—we explore everything and experiment with our environment. But as we get older, it’s looked down upon to try something new or different because you may fail. Forget about what society has made you believe. Embrace your inner child—your original or true self—and use your curiosity to your advantage. It changed my life, and it can change yours, too.
  5. Learn how to use failure to your advantage: Up until now, you’ve probably seen failure as a negative. However, with a simple mindset shift, you can leverage failure and use it to help you grow. See it as an opportunity to learn a lesson that will help you get to your next stepping stone. Failure is your teammate if you’re willing to lean into it.

3. Intentional Living

Do you want to make impactful decisions in your life that revolve around your beliefs and values? If you answered yes, then choose to lead a life of intentional living.

Intentional living consists of making choices that keep you connected with your life values. Choosing to live intentionally is a decision, it’s a commitment, it’s a promise you need to make with yourself. The decisions you make on a daily basis define you now and will define your future. With that in mind, this means you’re able to choose a life that matters—one that you want to lead.

Living intentionally doesn’t need to be complicated. It will only become complicated if you make it so. Instead, let go of doing it perfectly, stop overthinking, and trust your gut. Make decisions that feel right, the ones that represent the person you want to be or become. You can do it, trust me.

Tips to Live an Intentional Life

  1. Form a routine: The easiest way to be in the driver seat of your day is to create a morning practice that gives you the keys. Morning routines can help improve your attitude, performance, and overall energy. So, why would you not have one? Be sure to create a morning routine that works for your goals and schedule.
  2. Embody positive thinking: Your thoughts are energy. They cause change both internally and externally—your mind and your actions. Your mindset truly matters, and it can be a powerful aspect to unlocking the maximum version of your character.
  3. Consciously choose your life style: Your choices and decisions can dictate your life’s path. If you want to chase a specific life or create change, you must take charge and create that world for yourself through a lifestyle developed by intentional choices. To do so, prepare to choose your lifestyle, remember the “why” behind your choice, evaluate the outcome, benefits, and repercussions, and always follow through with your choice.
  4. Aim to create good, intentional habits: We all have our personal goals, whether they relate to your journey of self-discovery, or something else. However, to achieve these goals we must form habits—a system—that help us get to where we want to be. You can form new, intentional habits by asking the right questions about what habits are missing and what (negative) habits need to go, incorporating the new habit into your life, evaluating its future potential for your life, and letting the habit become second nature.
  5. Dream big, really big: Anytime you create a vision for yourself, remember that your life will be as big as your aspirations—your dreams. Don’t be afraid to dream your wildest dreams, it’s these intentions that will take you to your highest potential. Don’t sell yourself short, aim high, and chase exactly what you want, regardless of how “impossible” it feels at first.

The Truth About Self-discovery

Now, I'm going to be honest because that's what any good friend would do. The journey of self-discovery does not have an ending, meaning discovering who you are is an ongoing process. I'm not saying you'll never discover your true self; however, there will always be more to learn and areas where you can dig deeper.

You will encounter different phases of your journey, and with each phase, you'll start to understand yourself more. Your journey of self-discovery will become the healthiest addiction in your life. Embrace the process because life becomes a whole lot more exciting when you're uncovering new parts of your soul.

Bottom Line

Self-discovery, or discovering who you were always meant to be, is an on-going process that begins by making a commitment to living the life you want to live. By using the three pillars of self-discovery—awareness, comfort zones, and intentional living—you can flood your life with consciousness, step into your power, and become the best version of yourself.

How are you going to start your journey of self-discovery? Let me know in the comments below.

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Jordan Tarver is a lead editor at Forbes, a keynote speaker, and the bestselling author of You Deserve This Sh!t.
He’s transformed over 30,000 lives through his book, amassed more than 200,000 devoted followers, and garnered over 60 million views online. Jordan is on a mission to empower people and organizations to unlock exponential growth and expansive possibilities.

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