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What You’ve Learned About Yourself

NYC in Oct 2012

On Monday I included the following prompt for checking in with ourselves: Write what you’ve learned about yourself today.

Asking yourself this question not only helps you get to know yourself better (the foundation for a healthy and meaningful life); it also helps you see how you’d like to grow and build a more honest relationship with yourself and your world.

When we know ourselves we can make decisions that nourish us. We can practice exquisite self-care. We can say no to commitments that won’t work for us.

We can live in a way that honors our needs and preferences. We can live a life based on what really matters to us and remove or reduce what doesn’t.

In other words, we can build a life we truly want.

That’s why I’m expanding on Monday’s suggestion: Consider what you’ve learned about yourself thus far.

In your journal start with the words: “I’ve learned that I…”

It could be anything from “I’ve learned that I am” to “I’ve learned that I haveā€¦” to “I’ve learned that I prefer” to “I’ve learned that I need…”

Be specific and concrete. Be abstract. Include obvious things. Include phrases that pop into your head. They might not make sense right now. But they might tomorrow or a year from now.

Think about your personality, passions, preferences and priorities. Think about what fulfills you.

What makes you happy? What frustrates you? What inspires you? What’s surprised you about yourself?

What matters to you? What doesn’t? What do you love?

As an example, here are some realizations I’ve had about myself:

  • I’ve learned that I get overwhelmed, easily, especially when decisions must be made.
  • I’ve learned that I have a hard time making decisions. I rely heavily on others to a) know better and b) make the decision for me.
  • I’ve learned that I have a hard time giving myself credit.
  • I’ve learned that when I’m stressed, I have a tendency to isolate and cocoon.
  • I’ve learned that I love the arts. I love being surrounded by paintings and prints. I love reading about art. I love visiting museums and seeing musicals. I love art supplies. I love being around art supplies. It’s so inspiring. And I want to learn to paint.
  • I’ve learned that I function best when I move my body regularly. Three days without a walk, workout class or any kind of movement, and the dark thoughts start slithering in, and I develop a disconnect with my body.
  • I’ve learned that I really like to take my time with most things, which is how my dad was.
  • I’ve learned that writing the first article of every month just feels difficult.
  • I’ve learned that after I finish writing or journaling, I feel calmer. My thoughts and heart stop racing, and it’s like my body lets out a big sigh of relief.

After you’ve written your list, consider if you’d like to explore your statements. Maybe you’d like to work on one or two.

For instance, I’d like to become a better decision maker. That’s an important step for me to make in order to have a healthier relationship with myself and those around me.

What have you learned about yourself thus far?

** Don’t forget to leave a comment for the book giveaway! Tomorrow (Friday) at 11:59 p.m. EST is your last chance to enter.

What You’ve Learned About Yourself

Margarita Tartakovsky, MS

Margarita is an associate editor at She writes about everything from taking compassionate care of yourself at any weight, shape, and size, to coping healthfully with difficult emotions. Her goal is to give readers practical, empowering tips to better their lives, and to remind you that whatever you're struggling with, you're never, ever alone.

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APA Reference
Tartakovsky, M. (2013). What You’ve Learned About Yourself. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 23, 2019, from


Last updated: 14 Nov 2013
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