14 Ways To Understand Yourself A Tiny Bit More

If you can’t understand the world, try starting with yourself.

Zoë Burnett / BuzzFeed

1. Learn the story behind your health and ancestry with a 23andMe kit.

$199 and a healthy amount of saliva will get you a full mapping of practically everything you’ve ever wondered about how you got to be the way you are. The full-service Health + Ancestry test will tell you where in the world your DNA originated, genetic similarities between you and your relatives, and even what kind of muscles you have. The $99 version focuses only on your ancestry, but it will even tell you how much Neanderthal DNA you inherited!

2. Or if you want to get a closer look at your heritage, sign up for Ancestry.com.

Memberships start at $19.99 and include access to vital personal information, like names of ancestors, their countries of origin, and your ethnic mix.

3. Take the 16 Personalities test to find out the nitty-gritty details of your personality type.

The free online test takes Myers Briggs to the next level by assigning descriptors like “adventurer” or “campaigner” to your result. Though you can pay to get a more in-depth analysis, the site offers a relatively detailed description for each type for free, as well as celebrities that fall in each category.

4. Start — and keep — a bullet journal to keep track of your to-do lists, schedules, or literally anything you want.

Rachel W. Miller / Ellie Sunakawa / BuzzFeed

The beauty of a bullet journal isn’t just in the zillions of possibilities for design, it’s the freedom it gives you to make of it what you want. Trying to figure out why you’re getting so many stomachaches? Make a meal tracker layout! Want to finally make the most out of every day? Set up a system to keep a record of the habits you might not otherwise notice. Flipping back through your journal at the end of a week, month, or year will enlighten and surprise you.

5. Discover which of the 5 Love Languages you speak most fluently.

They say you can’t love someone else until you know yourself. You don’t have to be in a relationship to get something out of the book and its accompanying questionnaire — they’ll help you understand how you interact with friends and family. And if you do have a significant other, it has the potential to help you and your partner learn how to effectively communicate with each other.

6. Download apps that track and explain your sleep habits, period cycle, water intake, and more.

Knowing how much sleep and water you get — and need — may be the key to feeling more alert, awake, and active. Find an app that works best for your personality, whether it’s just a tracker, or one that gives you schedules and advice.

7. Have your astrology birth chart mapped to see how your destiny was written in the stars.

Sure, astrology is unscientific, vague, and often wrong, but when things seem overwhelming and complicated, some people find reassurance in looking to the galaxy for answers. Star charts look at the alignment of the zodiac, sun, moon, and planets to determine your personality, fate, and more. Plenty of websites offer free chart analyses using your birth date, time, and place, but a paid consultation will provide more in-depth and personalized results.

8. Get in touch with your reproductive system to finally understand your health — and life.

Toni Weschsler’s Taking Charge of Your Fertility is now in its tenth edition, and for good reason: her book on natural birth control and reproductive health is practically a bible for any person who just wants to figure out what the hell is going on inside their body. Especially useful for women trying to conceive or go off of birth control, the book also has illustrations, photos, and charts that make even the most complex bodily functions seem simple.

9. Locate your inner joy with a 52 Lists for Happiness journal.

Each of the list prompts in this pretty, hardcover journal promises to help you find the key to your happiness and bring more balance into your life. If you crave something shorter and simpler, try a Five-Minute Journal, instead.

10. Watch this “cube” test to uncover your true personality.

It might sound crazy, but this classic personality test can tell you truths about the size of your ego and even how many children you’ll have!

11. Use social media to discover new interests and sources of inspiration.

Scrolling through Facebook and Snapchat can make anxiety spiral out of control — hello, FOMO and jealousy — but it can also help you figure out new passions. If Instagram is your platform of choice, for example, head over to the “Explore” tab and see what shows up. Often, the algorithm will surface photos and accounts that mirror things you’ve liked or looked at. So if you’ve recently admired an artist’s gorgeous watercolor videos, it may show you tons of similar accounts…or it may show a bunch of accounts that turn out to be the exact thing your life was missing. Follow them — and unfollow the ones that don’t make you feel awesome — and before you know it, your feed will calm, inspire, and maybe even educate you.

12. Get your aura read and photographed to better know the ~vibe~ you give off — and what you attract.

Your aura is invisible, but its field of energy affects everything around you — or so its believers say. Find out if you’re one of them by visiting a reader (Radiant Human is a mobile lab that travels around the U.S.) and getting a special Polaroid taken and read.

13. Visit your local natural history museum to get in touch with how it all got to be this way.

So many explanations for the world, for humanity, for history, for you, and everything else are packed into those buildings, and they’re fun to visit, too! The American Museum of Natural History in New York City, for example, has a hall of human origins that shows evolution right before your own eyes. What better way to grasp a sense of appreciation for how you even came to exist?

14. And when all else fails, sit back, relax, and put on Planet Earth so you can learn more about the world around you.

BBC / Via hercampus.com

The award-winning series, now in its third iteration, is a gorgeous look at nature and animals and your place in the world, all narrated by David Attenborough’s dulcet tones. All of Season 1 is streaming on Netflix, and it might just chill you out for once.

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