The Cold Penguin

expanding the box

Project Me: 4 Questions

on June 17, 2014

As promised, here is a summary of the work I did last week.  In part of my Project Me (aka finding my self), I did some research and then made myself answer some questions.  Some of them were tough, and others were easy.

Part 1 of Project Me was figuring out exactly who I wanted to be as a whole person.  This was pretty easy and I actually had to stop myself from writing!  I did it by answering this question:

What personality traits do I admire in others and try to emulate in my own behaviors/self?

I just thought of some amazing people, both people I know and people I don’t, and wrote down what I love about them.  It was easy to get carried away, but some of the traits I admire and want to have myself are:

  • self-confident
  • fearless
  • well-balanced
  • optimistic
  • open
  • giving

Basically just being a generally cool, confident and wonderful person in every aspect of life!  We all want to be perfect though, so focus on what really is the most important for you.  You may admire someone for their intelligence, but maybe compassion is more important for you.  So try to narrow it down to give you the best idea on what you really want to strive for.

What do I value in a friend?

If you are having difficulty narrowing down the qualities that mean the most to you, this one will definitely help you out!  You may find that being a generous person is a quality you value very much in friendship, but athleticism is not.

The next part wasn’t as fun.  It was  focused on what you want to change.  And to find that, you have to dig deep and get a little dirty.  Start by answering these questions.

What do you consider your weaknesses?

And we are not looking for the interview answer of “I care too much about my job.”  This is about what you view as your weaknesses.  Here are a few of mine, to help you get started.

  • lack of self-confidence
  • fear of failure
  • being quiet
  • having anxiety

Some people may not consider being quiet a weakness, but in my mind I do see it that way.  This is very much a deep exercise really getting to the root of your perceptions of yourself.

What are your fears?

And I guess bears would work, but try to really dig deep into everyday fears.  Here are some of mine:

  • being alone and unloved
  • failure/looking like a fool
  • wasting my life

What are your dislikes in your life right now?

Do you hate your job, your home, your relationship status?  What would you change if you could in your life?

I don’t like that in my life right now I’m bored (and feel like I’m a boring person), do not have a defined purpose or passion, and feel like I’m wasting away time.

What are your disappointments in your life right now or in the past?

Are you upset you didn’t take a job offer? didn’t finish school? settled for less than you deserved?  Think broad and big.  Some of mine are:

  • running away when things get rough (many examples of this)
  • not being close to my family (outside of a few members)

After you have finished answering those questions you probably will need a break to ruminate.  I know I did.  I had to just get away for a while because of all the negativity I was writing about really brought me down.  So I distracted myself with other things, and came back to it the next day ready to tackle the issues at hand.

So when you are ready, from your answers to the above questions, ask yourself the following questions.

Why do you think you exhibit some of these characteristics that you are not happy with?

A lot of this is usually do to past/learned habits that sometimes we are not even aware of.  Like for me, I was the baby (by many years) of the family, so I learned at an early age that no one was going to listen to the 7 year olds’ ideas/wants.   I just needed to go along with what my older brother and parents wanted to do.  I “learned” the behavior of not voicing my opinions, not making decisions and in general I stopped having opinions and forgot how to make decisions.  Of course I recognize this was not my families fault, it was just a byproduct of being so much younger than everyone else.  And now I need to relearn how to do these things, which brings me to the next question.

What can you do to change the habits/characteristics you are not happy with?

How can you overcome your fears, conquer your weakness, change things in your life you dislike and avoid (to your best ability) future disappointments?

This can be a pretty big question to answer.  And it’s best to start small.  If you want to become more self-confident, you can’t just wake up one day and be more confident.  It’s a process.  So think of the small steps you can take, like starting an exercise program or taking a course/class to better your knowledge, that will help you develop your self-image and self-confidence.

With these answers, you can develop a plan of action.  You may want to pick one or two areas to focus on first, and perhaps when you work on those other things will just fall in line (or at least you’ll be more prepared to tackle other areas).  Remember to start small, give yourself achievable tasks with deadlines, and trust the process.

I’m working on my plan of action this week.  So stay tuned next week for my examples.  Prediction: a lot of challenges will be developed from my action plan!

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