The Importance of Knowing Ourselves

Adwait Abhyankar
3 min readJun 24, 2022

We often are fed a lot of quotes on 'Self-Love' via different social media platforms. Some random quotes are usually attached in the name of famous personalities who themselves have no clue when they said it. They are sometimes even forced to issue clarifications on quotes floating in their names. This blog indicates my thoughts on the intricacies of introspection and knowing ourselves.

I want to discuss more the implications of knowing ourselves before self-love. It's often said that we can't love anyone before loving ourselves. I'll add that we can't love ourselves before knowing ourselves. So why does knowing ourselves matter so much?

Knowing ourself is the foundation stone before entering into any conversation with other people. The single most crucial thing holds the key to how everyone around us perceives us—knowing how we are the basis for our relationships with everyone are set, evolved or broken. It is the origination point on which we make genuine promises or commitments to people around us.

Everyone perceives us in different ways based on how they understand us. Based on an individual's comfort level with the other person, we interact and behave with different people. We might have serious conversations with some people and funny or casual conversations with others. The conversations we have with a 10-year-old kid differ from those we have with our friends and those with a 70-year-old person. So based on many other factors like these, all the people around us perceive us based on how they understand us. So a person with whom we have serious conversations might conclude that we lack a sense of humour because he hardly gets to see our funny side and vice-versa. In one of my favourite books, 'To Kill A Mockingbird, there's an excellent quote that states, "Most people are, Scout , when you finally see them."

We often end up 'being hurt' by others, or we often end up hurting others. This hurt happens because how people end up understanding others based on their perception. Most people end up hurting others unintentionally because they are unaware of this version of theirs. And that's why it becomes crucial to know ourselves because people perceive us based on their understanding of us.

At some stage, we would've said this line looking at some person and wondering, 'Kitna Badal Gaya ye Insaan'. I assume everyone is familiar with the song 'Dekhte Dekhte' from the movie 'Batti Gul Meter Chalu', which has the lyrics.

‘वो जो आँखों से इक पल ना ओझल हुवे
लापता हो गए देखते देखते,
सोचता हूँ के वो कितने मासूम थे
क्या से क्या हो गए देखते देखते,’

This changed version of people also leaves us 'hurt'. But people' change' not because they enter our lives with a pre-determined will to hurt us but because they find their comfort zone somewhere. Why does this happen? Again because they don't have enough knowledge of how they are.

We are bound to fail in fulfilling our obligations, promises and commitments made to others if we don't know ourselves. If we forget to promise ourselves to be committed to our promises to others, we are bound to fail in fulfilling such commitments. Also, if we can't promise ourselves to be committed to the promises that we made to ourselves, there's no way that we will end up fulfilling our commitments to others. Unless we know ourselves, we cannot fulfil promises made to ourselves; hence, fulfilling obligations made to others are miles away. Therefore, it becomes so crucial to know ourselves.

Therefore, I always wish I don't show a side of myself, resulting in me having to break my commitment. Every day, if I get to know myself better, people would not struggle to understand me now and then if my foundation and fundamentals remain the same. Evolution shouldn't come at the cost of changing the fundamentals.

Hence knowing ourselves comes before self-love. And only the one who truly loves himself can genuinely love someone else. And knowing ourselves thus becomes the foundation of self-love.

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Adwait Abhyankar

CA| Cricket Enthusiast| I write on Cricket, Travel, Pyschology, Wildlife, Economics & IR