Grooving on Knowing Thyself: Why Figuring Out Who I Am is Easier Than You Thought.

“Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” Are you tired of that ditty? We are. How are you supposed to know what you love if we don’t 100% know who we are?

“Know thyself” is a maxim that has been central to Western civilization for the last 2500 years. It has been pervasive in philosophy over the ages and more recently in psychology. Who are we? Who am I? These questions blend nicely with understanding why we do what we do, a foundational question in behavioral science. And it is with this curiosity that cohosts Kurt Nelson, PhD and Tim Houlihan delve into the mysteries of who we think we are.

More importantly, this episode is interested in honest self-discovery: the answer to the question: who am I? To help you answer that, we humbly submit a series of questions and reflections for your consideration, for the purpose of having a clearer sense of who I am. (At least at the moment.)

We use three sets of reflections for you to consider:

  1. Identify where in your life you find energy, joy, and satisfaction. These questions and reflections allow us to target the ideals and desires we have in our lives. These are enhancers.
  2. Identify what aspects of our lives are not going the way we want them to. These questions help us clarify what is not working for us. These are detractors.
  3. Identify what requirements we have to live in this world. In others, what obligations, relationships, and financial requirements, among other things, are commitments we must live by? These are necessities.

We also talk about the nature of memories, the present moment, and ways our future aspirations influence who we are. We even discuss Dr. Bryan Lowery’s idea that who we are is largely influenced by the people around us. (Talk about mind-bending!)

By reflecting on these questions and our general discussion, we hope that Groovers can discover a clearer picture of who you are and that these reflections will lead you to a more perfect version of knowing thyself, as Socrates might say.

© 2023 Behavioral Grooves, LLC


Know Thyself Questions:

Finding Energy and Satisfaction Questions (Enhancers: What You Love To Do)

  • What activities or experiences make me feel the most fulfilled and content?
  • When do I feel the most authentic and genuine?
  • What aspects of life are non-negotiable for me?
  • What principles am I unwilling to compromise?
  • What kind of person do I want to be remembered?
  • What causes or issues do I feel most passionate about?
  • What qualities do I admire most in others?
  • What decisions or situations have made me feel proud or satisfied with myself?
  • What kind of person do I want to be remembered as?

Avoiding Negative Emotion Questions (Detractors: What You Hate To Do)

  • What has been my lowest point in the past 5 years?
  • What situations or people drain my energy and leave me feeling exhausted?
  • What triggers my negative emotions such as anger, sadness, or anxiety?
  • Where do I feel regret for things I’ve done or for things I haven’t done?
  • What do I stress over the most?
  • What negative self-talk or inner critic do I struggle with?
  • What are some common sources of conflict or tension in my relationships?
  • What do I fear?
  • What decisions or situations have made me feel guilty or uncomfortable?

Living in this World Questions (Necessities: What You Have To Do)

  • Am I honoring your relationship?
  • Do I have what I need to provide for my basic necessities?
  • Where do I compromise to ensure that I have positive relationships?
  • Am I being responsible?
  • Am I honoring my commitments to others, to my job, and to other aspects of my life?
  • What are the pressures that the world places upon me?

Your responses and reflections should be as honest and truthful as possible. Try your best to not be tainted by your biases. A clearer picture will help you identify the key areas that drive you.

Examine your self through the lens of what you love to do, what you hate to do, and what you have to do.

Write out a 7-word value statement that defines who you are at the core.



(0:07) Understanding “Know Thyself” through history.

(5:00) Personal growth throughout history.

(11:28) Understanding one’s true identity.

(19:33) Understanding one’s biases.

(25:03) Self-awareness and personal growth.

(31:50) Finding your groove.


© 2023 Behavioral Grooves, LLC