The Search for Self is Constant



image by anotherphotograph


Most people assume that one day  they will discover themselves. The way they talk about it, it seems like they are expecting to have all the answers so that the file labelled SELF could be called complete.

Is there a definitive list of questions that you must answer before you officially know your self? 

Not as far as I’m aware.

Humans don’t come with a list of specifications, or  the definite number of things you must know about yourself to be considered a complete, self-aware person. What’s even more flummoxing is that even when you find the answers, and though those answers may be right for you at the time, there is no guarantee that they will remain right for your permanently. 

Sucks, doesn’t it? 

Perhaps, not.

Because like most things in life, the answer is not a clear cut, yes and no. It’s not a simple matter of “I’m self-aware” or “I’m not self-aware”.

For 99% of the people on this planet it’s going to be degrees of self-awareness ranging from 1% to 99%, rather than being 0% or 100%. 

To some extent, when you find parts of yourself, that discovery is permanent, because a large part of becoming self-aware is being able to accept truth about yourself. It’s about understanding the difference between the things you do that are in alignment with who you are, and the things you do that niggle at your conscious.

You can discover your core values, usually through some hard knocks. You can discover your intrinsic motivations, and what drives you in life, what prompts you to get out of bed every day. You can discover who you are, so that you are not completely confused about your identity. Some of these things may remain constant for a long time, or even for life. But once you have discovered those, then what? 

If you call yourself “complete” at that, then that is all you will be until the day you die. You won’t grow. Not growing leads to eventual stagnation, and then decay. 

But if you continue to live, and if you continue to keep yourself open to new truths, and to changes you may go through as a result of new experiences, then you will constantly have new things to learn. As you grow older, as you go through new life experiences, you may find that some of your current beliefs no longer apply. As you see more of the world, as you invest emotionally in a wider range of human feelings, you may discover that you didn’t know all that you thought you knew. 

One of the prime examples of this seems to be parenthood. Nearly every parent I know describes that they had no idea that the capacity to love a child was so much more deeper than to love anyone else. 

If you accept, even when you think you know your self, that you merely know some parts of your self, because you haven’t yet experienced or used 100% of your emotional or intellectual capacity, then you will always keep yourself open to new truths, and to exploring new horizons. You will always be open to discovering new parts of your self. 

That’s why, the search for self is constant. 


Journal about the degree of self-awareness you think you have. Do you feel that you know your self? Do you understand and agree with the concept of the search for self being constant?