Self Awareness: How to Build Self Awareness Skills & Discover Who You Are

We get it — planning for the future is stressful.

With changes in technology, expanded career options, and more competitive application and interview processes, Gen Z life is a tad more complicated than it was for your parents.

The good news? You can be and do ANYTHING — which is super liberating, but also a bit overwhelming.

You’re also a teenager, having to answer huge life questions, like:

  • What do I want to study?
  • What school is the best fit for me?
  • What will make me truly happy in life?
  • What are my career aspirations?
self awareness meaning

We have an approach that will help you unpack this. It all starts by building self awareness.

You might be asking what the meaning of self awareness is and why self awareness is important.

Put simply, self awareness is the ability to see yourself clearly and objectively. It’s about focusing on yourself, rather than everything going on around you.

Most students look very similar on applications because they take the same classes, extracurriculars, part-time jobs, etc. 

This makes it hard to stand out or demonstrate emotional maturity on common admissions essay questions like:

  • “Tell us about who you are.” (Queen’s Commerce)
  • “What virtues are the most difficult for you to find balance in?” (McMaster BHSc)
  • “Tell us about yourself.” (Waterloo, UofT, Schulich & UBC Video Interviews)
  • “What is your ultimate life goal?” (Waterloo Engineering)
  • “What do you think has had the biggest impact on who you are today? (Waterloo Engineering)

If you really want to stand out from the crowd, being more self-aware will help you make better decisions about your future, form a unique identity, and improve your performance in school and other extracurricular activities.

What is the Student Identity Blueprint™?

We’ve developed a unique way to help you build your self awareness and learn more about who you are. We call it the Student Identity Blueprint™.

The Student Identity Blueprint™ is part of Discover: the first phase in our youth coaching process. It’s designed to help you enhance your self awareness and form your own unique identity. It helps you and your coach really understand who you are, what you’re interested in, and what makes you, you. 

Every student we work with completes the Blueprint because it sets the foundation for everything you work on during your coaching journey.

Every goal you set, interview you do, and essay you write, will leverage the work you’ve done on the Blueprint. 

It’s that much of a game-changer. 

The Student Identity Blueprint™ is based on the 6 pillars of our holistic, ‘full student’ coaching methodology:

self awareness skills

These are all your achievements across our 6 areas of ‘full student’ development. By being as detailed as possible in your Blueprint, you’ll give your coach a better picture of what you’ve done so far in your life, and you can work with them to expand these experiences into larger goals.

COACH’S TIP: We believe ‘Achievements’ are SO MUCH MORE than just grades…and so do admissions committees, employers, and scholarship reviewers! That’s why we want to know about all areas of your life, like what you’ve learned about life so far, how you improve your mental wellness, your favourite past-times, and more. Keep these sections up to date as you accomplish your goals across all 6 of these pillars.

If you aren’t already, connect with a Youth Coach™ to get started on your Blueprint and start your journey of self discovery.

Table of Contents 

  1. Getting Started: Self-Aware Student Assessment; Accessing your Student Identity Blueprint™; and More.
  2. Writing Your Student Identity Blueprint™: Filling Out the Youth Development Pillars in Your Blueprint; and More.
  3. Next Steps: Setting up a Discovery Call; Moving into the Design Phase; and More.

Self Awareness Skills: Getting Started

The Self-Aware Student Assessment

The first step if to complete these two Self-Aware Student Assessments:

  1. Natural Skills
  2. Nurtured Values

Make sure you complete both. They are important for your Blueprint (and we’ll talk about them more later in this guide). 

In each Assessment, you’ll be asked to answer a series of questions. 

Here’s what the Natural Skills Assessment looks like:

self awareness skills

For this Assessment, you will see 4 answer choices from ‘Strongly Disagree’ to ‘Strongly Agree’. Under each question, simply choose the answer that you think best describes you.

Here’s an example of what the Values Assessment looks like:

self awareness skills

For these questions, you must rate each response on a scale of 1-6 with 1 being your top answer and 6 being your last choice answer.

For example, in the question above, if you are most interested in school assignments that are challenging in some way, you would label this as a 1. And then if you really don’t like group projects, you would give that a 6.

Here’s what a finished answer looks like using this scale:

self awareness skills

COACH’S TIP: Read each question fully, and take the time to think about what it’s asking you. Don’t be afraid to answer honestly — this Assessment is confidential and the only person who will see your answers is your coach. 🙂

Self Awareness Assessment URL 

Once you’ve completed the Self-Aware Student Assessment, click the “Save My Results” button and enter your email address.

You’ll get an email that has a unique URL with your results.

The email looks like this:

self awareness

REMEMBER: Forward this email to your coach and/or simply copy and paste the URL onto the first section at the top of your Blueprint, where it says “Assessment Results URL” like this:

self awareness skills

Accessing Your Student Identity Blueprint™

After the Self-Aware Student Assessment, it’s time to fill in your Student Identity Blueprint™. 

You’ll get a link from your coach to access the Blueprint template in your Tracker

There are two places in the Tracker where you can access your Blueprint. 

You will also see a task under Actions that says ‘Complete the Student Identity Blueprint Template’ under Actions, and you can simply click the ‘Doc/Link’ attachment to be taken directly to the Blueprint. Or, you can click on it under the ‘Document & Link’ section at the bottom.

It looks like this in the Tracker: 

self awareness skills youthfully tracker

This link will take you to a Google doc. Once you open it, click File > Make a Copy and then share it with your coach.

REMEMBER: Keep your Student Identity Blueprint™ in Google Docs rather than as a Word doc so you and your coach can work on it together after you’ve filled out as much as you can.

Here’s a Student Identity Blueprint™ example that you can refer to for inspiration as you write your own (don’t worry, we also have a bunch of examples to help you below).  

Remember that your first draft of the Student Identity Blueprint™ doesn’t have to be perfect. Give yourself a couple of days, and fill in as much as you can. You and your coach will go over the rest on your Discovery call.

Keep reading this guide to learn about each section and get some helpful examples.

In this guide, we will use Amara’s Student Identity Blueprint™ as an example.

Meet Amara, one of Youthfully’s students:

self awareness meaning

If you ever have questions as you write, don’t hesitate to reach out to your coach for help. If you haven’t started your Blueprint, connect with a coach now to get your copy.

In this section, we’ll go through the 6 youth development pillars and talk a bit about what each of them are and how you can fill them our in your Blueprint.

Self-Awareness Skills: Awareness & Development

Natural Skills vs. Nurtured Values: What’s the Difference?

After years and years of the ‘nature vs. nurture’ debate, psychologists have concluded that approximately 50% of your personality is based on your nature and 50% on nurture

What does this mean?

Have your parents ever described a part of your personality by saying, “You were like that since you were a baby.” That’s your nature — the raw talents you’re naturally given at birth. 

That’s why we call it Natural Skills.

Your nurture, on the other hand, are the aspects of your personality that shape what you find important in your life. For example, your family probably instilled certain values in you, such as working hard or giving back to your community.

That’s why we call it Nurtured Values.

self awareness meaning

Each of the six Natural Skills and six Nurtured Values relate to one another (e.g. Executing Skill = Advancer Value). Some people may have overlapping Natural Skills and Nurtured Values, while others do not.

That’s why we’ve designed the Assessment to explore your nurture and nature independently, so we can see what distinctly drives your thoughts, feelings, and behaviours.

Almost every single essay or interview question can be answered through the lens of your Natural Skills and Nurtured Values — that’s why this section is so important.

Self Awareness: Natural Skills 


Every person has a unique mix of six Natural Skills:

  • Communicating: naturally concise, clear, and observant with information.
  • Collaborating: naturally good at generating original ideas and working with others.
  • Influencing: naturally good at selling people on ideas and motivating them to get there. 
  • Strategizing: naturally future-oriented and able to think ‘big-picture’.
  • Solving: naturally good at analyzing complex problems and concepts independently.
  • Executing: naturally detail-oriented, organized, methodical, and efficient.

These skills are mapped across two opposing axes: practical versus imaginable; and logical versus social. If you’re natural at one skill, you’re not natural at the opposing skill. That’s just how our brains work.

For example, because Amara ranks High in Solving, her Collaborating skills are going to be Low because that’s the opposing skill. Your brain can’t be naturally hardwired with skills that oppose one another.


Notice your skills are ranked as High, Medium, and Low.

Here’s what Amara’s Natural Skills Assessment page looks like:

self awareness

In the Top Skills section of your Student Identity Blueprint™, write your top 3 Natural Skills. If you don’t rank High in 3, you can add ones that rank as Medium. 

Here’s what Amara’s Top Skills section looks like in her Blueprint (check out another complete Blueprint example here):  

Top Skills
Solving (High)
Strategizing (High)
Influencing (Medium)

Your coach will discuss what your mix means during your Discovery call.

This doesn’t mean you’re good at your High Natural Skills, and it also doesn’t mean you’re bad at your Low Natural Skills.

It simply means that you aren’t naturally oriented towards it. For example:

  • High Communicating individuals will find it easier to write a 300-word essay, but that doesn’t mean Strategizing individuals can’t be good writers too (it’s just a bit more difficult for them).
  • High Solving/Executing individuals will find math comes easier to them, but that doesn’t mean Influencing/Collaborating individuals can’t be good at math (it just takes more work).

Understanding your Top Skills will help you pinpoint a future role you pursue in your career. For example, if you’re a high Influencing individual, it’s likely this skill will be central to the career path/industry you choose (because we tend to be drawn to roles/activities that we’re good at). 

Therefore, you could be drawn to a role as a salesperson or a consultant, for example. You’ll see a list of possible activities/roles each skill connects to in the Detailed Natural Skills pages.


People apply Natural Skills through specific roles and/or activities they do. 

For example, Influencing skills are applied through coaching and mentoring, among other roles and activities.

Under your Top Skills, tell us the roles/activities you do that let you apply your Natural Skills.

If you need some inspiration, or to get a deeper understanding of each skill, click on the Skill within the dashboard and you’ll be taken to a detailed description page.

You can pick out some keywords from each description and use them to create 2-4 statements under the “Roles/Activities” section.

For example, if you rank High in Solving, you’ll notice on the Solving Skill Description page some keywords, such as logic, analysis, and insights. 

Amara ranks High in Solving and Strategizing and Medium in Influencing, and she’s listed the ways that she applies these skills in the roles/ activities in her life. This section in her Blueprint looks like this (check another full example here): 

Top Skills
Solving (High) Strategizing (High)
Influencing (Medium)
How do you seek to apply these skills?
  • Clarifying problems to ensure the ‘right’ problem is being solved (e.g. in debate club, I always spend ample time defining the problem)
  • Synthesizing ideas from different domains or generating original ideas (e.g. I created a ping pong club and competition against other schools)
  • Coaching and mentoring others (e.g. kids basketball team)

“What is your biggest strength?” — you’ve probably been asked this question a few times if you’ve interviewed for a position at your school’s club or for a part-time job. 

This is exactly what the Skills Statement is asking you to answer.

Your Skills Statement is a short description of your unique mix of skills, and how you apply them in your everyday life.

You can start your Skills Statement with a phrase like, “I have a unique ability to…” or “I am particularly good at…”. Or create one yourself!

Here’s an example of Amara’s Skills Statement:

Skills Statement

I have a unique ability to combine insights, topics, or ideas from different areas to create unique products, programs, or events that improve people’s lives in some way.

For example, I noticed our school spirit was quite low, but me and my friends were continuously playing ping pong in our free time, which was very entertaining (and funny) to watch. I combined both of these insights to create the idea to start the first High School Ping Pong Club and coordinated with other high school’s to do the same, ultimately running two tournaments with sold out attendance.

Self Awareness: Nurtured Values 

What are Nurtured Values?

Nurtured Values are things that are important to you and what motivates you. 

There’s an important distinction here. 

Natural Skills are what you’re good at; Nurtured Values are what you care about. Those two things aren’t always the same.

For example, you could be good at working in teams (Skill = Collaborating), but you actually prefer to focus on your own self-growth and development, and you don’t care much about expanding your relationships (Value ≠ Connecting).

Separating skills and values gives us the full picture of who you are.

Your Nurtured Values are established through your upbringing, surroundings, and environment. For example, if your parents place a heavy importance on self-development and life-long learning, their Top Value is likely as a Grower (and it’s likely yours will be too).

Everyone has a mix of these 6 Universal Values:

  • Equalizer: caring about stability, balance, and certainty in your life and career.
  • Connector: caring about building meaningful relationships with people.
  • Impacter: caring about leaving a legacy and making a difference.
  • Innovator: caring about using disruption, change, and variety to try something new.
  • Grower: caring about taking on new challenges outside of your comfort zone.
  • Advancer: caring about being world-class at what you do.

Understanding what your Nurtured Values are will help you discover your interests and what you are uniquely passionate about. 

This will be key as you write your university supplementary essays, job cover letters, and scholarship applications because many questions are looking to understand what you care about and why.

Your Nurtured Values also help you understand what industry or career path you should pursue. For example, if you’re an Impacter, you likely want a career where you can make a difference to the world by contributing to a cause or issue you care about, like starting a business that supports the climate crisis (if that’s what you care about). 

Or, if you’re an Advancer you might want to go into investment banking because that industry is known for linking compensation to your performance and offering accelerated career advancement. We will discuss this more in the Aspirations section.


Your Assessment dashboard will list the Nurtured Values ranked as High, Medium, and Low. 

Here’s what Amara’s Nurtured Values Assessment page looks like:

self awareness

In your Student Identity Blueprint™, write the highest 2-3 Values like the below. If you don’t rank ‘High’ in 2-3, you can add ones that rank as ‘Medium’ as well. 

Here’s how Amara filled in her Blueprint with her top High and Medium Nurtured Values (check out another complete Blueprint example here):

Top Values
Innovator (High)
Impacter (High)
Grower (High)

REMEMBER: Like your Natural Skills, if you rank Low in a Nurtured Value, that doesn’t mean you don’t care about this Nurtured Value, it just means it doesn’t matter to you as much as the others.

There are no ‘Good’ or ‘Bad’ Nurtured Values, just as there are no ‘Good’ or ‘Bad’ Natural Skills. At the end of the day, the world needs a mix of all of these different Values and Skills so we can all balance each other out.


People apply Nurtured Values through specific passions and/or interests. Not only that — the reason why people are passionate about things differs by person.

For example, if you’re passionate about playing sports, it might be because you see sports as a way of applying your Connector Value, because you can work with a team. 

Someone else might be passionate about playing sports because they can apply their Advancer Value and score goals, win games, and earn awards.

Similarly, one person might be interested in pursuing a career in Engineering because they know it’s a stable/secure profession (Equalizer), while another person might love Engineering because they can build and create new things (Innovator).

Either way, your Nurtured Values drive your passions and interests. We want to know how.

Under your Top Values, describe how you apply (or want to apply) your biggest alues through your passions and interests during your everyday life.

If you need some inspiration, or to get a deeper understanding of each value, you can read more in the Detailed Values Description page.Try to pick out some keywords from each description and use them to create 2-4 statements. 

Then, think about how this applies to your interests and passions (i.e. what you enjoy doing) or goals that you’re thinking about for the future. 

Here’s an example from Amara’s Student Identity Blueprint™ (see another complete Blueprint example here):  

Top Values
Grower (High)
Impacter (High)
Innovator (High)
How do you seek to apply these values?
  • Constantly learning new hands-on ‘blue collar’ skills so I can become a better real estate investor and developer (e.g. I saw a significant shortage of carpenters in my community, so I learned how to lay wood floors and have contracted for ten houses so far).
  • Real estate is a way I want to apply my Impacter value because it’s an easily measurable and tangible asset and it almost always goes up in price (e.g. I bought one of the cheapest houses in Canada, located in northern New Brunswick for $10,000, and have travelled up once to self-renovate with the ultimate goal of renting it out and refinancing to buy another house). I would like to make an impact in the world by raising awarenss and helping those who cannot afford a home in my community.
  • Question why things are done certain ways and challenge the status quo to constantly innovate (e.g. as a breaststroke swimmer, nearly everyone breathes after each stroke but I took another approach, breathing only four times in a 50m length).

Your Values Statement is a short description of what’s most important to you, and how you apply it in your everyday life. 

You can start your Values Statement with a phrase like, “I care most about…” or “I am highly motivated by…”. Or create one yourself!

Go a step further and briefly state how you apply your Nurtured Values in your daily roles/activities. 

Here’s what Amara wrote using her Grower, Advancer, and Innovator Values and how she applies it in her life (see another complete Blueprint example here):

Values Statement

I am highly motivated by learning hands-on ‘trades skills’ that, for some reason, are ignored by the wealthiest members of society, yet are also the most in-demand services they pay for. Then, I care about using these skills to advance myself in the world and grow my assets at an accelerated pace.

I see myself most applying this motivation through real estate development and management. I want to invest in residential and commercial real estate and manage an international portfolio of real estate assets, using my mechanical, hands-on knowledge to my advantage.


We have areas in our life that we want to work on, like starting a school project the night before it’s due or not being able to focus on something for too long before moving on to something else. 

Put simply, a susceptibility is a habit, behaviour, or mindset that’s holding you back from being the best you can be. 

Each skill can turn into a susceptibility if it’s used in the wrong situation or is overused. If you’ve heard the term “Achilles’ heel’, that’s what we mean — it’s that one weakness (despite all your other strengths) that could lead to your downfall. 

Understanding these potentially negative aspects of your Natural Skills (and your Nurtured Values) will help you avoid making common mistakes and work to use them only in a positive way.

For example, because Amara ranks High in Solving, sometimes she finds herself taking it to the extreme when she over analyzes and over complicates things too much. She remembers one time during a math test when she obsessed over the little details and made the question way more difficult than it had to be. And, because of that, she didn’t have enough time to answer all the questions and she got a lower grade than she wanted. So, even though she is good at Solving, she took it to the extreme and that led to a negative result. 

The detailed Skills Description pages have a section that specifically highlights susceptibilities for each skill, which is worth reading if you’re stuck.

Here’s Amara’s Susceptibilities section in her Blueprint. As you can see, it’s helpful to provide an example of how this susceptibility has occurred in her life (check out another example of a complete Blueprint here):  

self awareness skills

Every person in the world has a remarkably unique story

Your story gives your coach insight into WHY you are who you are.

In this section, we want to know about the most influential people, moments, challenges, and every other experience in your life that GREATLY impacted you in some way.

We all have different experiences, we all come from different places, and we were all brought up differently. All of this impacts the way we see the world and make meaning of things.

Why is this important? 

Imagine a student who spent the first five years of their life in Syria, then sought asylum in Canada. 

If this student didn’t mention this experience and its impact on them anywhere on their university/scholarship/job applications, it would miss a massive part of who they are. This is an extreme example to drive home the point. 

Most young people don’t think their story is unique, but trust us it REALLY is. 

Your coach can really help draw out those experiences in your life that shaped who you are today and give you perspective on what elements truly are special.

self awareness
Identifying Influential Factors In Your Story 

In your Student Identity Blueprint™, there are two columns: Influential Factor and Story

An Influential Factor is simply a 1-2 word summary of impactful events, interests, people, learning outcomes, and/or experiences that have happened thus far in your life. These are all the things that have shaped who you are, and provide the inspiration for where you want to go in the future (and why). It’s basically anything that has influenced you. 

Then, in the Story column, you simply describe this experience and give some details about how it influenced you in the moment and going forward.

For example, if you started a small side hustle business or worked on a cool new invention after watching Dragon’s Den, the Influential Factor might be “Entrepreneurship”. Then, in the Story section, you could say that one of the reasons it influenced you so deeply was because your Dad started his own business to sell one of his own inventions when your family immigrated to Canada and you remember that this was one of the things that first sparked your interest in business. 

An Influential Factor doesn’t have to have multiple stories attached to it. All it needs is one.

Try to think back as early as you can for some of these stories. Many of them will be from your childhood and it’s useful to get your parents’ help brainstorming as they might remember more.

It’s also helpful to think about your life chronologically, starting with your first memories.

Your Influential Factors can be broad. Just write down some rough point form notes for each and your coach will help pull more stories from your life. Your coach will find those hidden details of your life that you may have not otherwise thought were important.

Here’s an example from Amara’s Blueprint. Here she identified a few themes from memories, experiences, interests, etc. and then wrote a few lines about each of them (see the complete Blueprint here):

Influential Factor
Real Estate
  • My mom is a real estate agent and starting when I was seven years old I would help her prepare for, and host, open houses for clients. 
  • I remember walking into every house and being so interested to explore the house. 
  • Over time, listening in on hundreds of questions my mom’s clients would ask, I began to learn more about why certain houses were designed in particular ways and why ones were more expensive (or appealing) than others.
  • Over the past ten years, I’ve kept very much in touch with the price increases we’ve seen in real estate since the 2008 Financial Crisis and how unaffordable homes are for Gen Z. 
  • I became determined to buy a home before I turned 18 and used my savings to buy a house in northern New Brunswick for $10,000 (which I found online).
Idea Girl
  • I never understood why breaststroke swimmers would breathe after every stroke, if this added half a second to their stroke; so I learned how to hold my breath for a very long period of time and largely took out the breath from my stroke. Today, I’m a top 30 ranked breastroker in the province.
  • I noticed our school spirit was quite low, but me and my friends were continuously playing ping pong in our free time, which was very entertaining (and funny) to watch. I combined both of these insights to create the idea to start the first High School Ping Pong Club and coordinated with other high school’s to do the same, ultimately running two tournaments with sold out attendance.
Building Things
  • Ever since I was a very young child, I’ve been building things. It started with Lego when I was two. I built a dog house that was featured in my local newspaper when I was five. 
  • Some kids love watching cooking shows whereas I really love watching Holmes on Homes. From that show, I would carefully observe their renovation techniques and with the help of YouTube I started learning different trades skills.
  • My local town is in dire need of tradespeople, so they are able to charge nearly whatever they want; therefore, I’ve started my own carpentry business laying wood floors for clients and slowly expanding my services. I am also renovating my house.

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Self-Awareness: Academics & Post-Secondary

In your Student Identity Blueprint™, you will see two sections:

  1. Current Education
  2. Continued Studies 

Here, you will outline your academic progress until now, as well as tell your coach about the hopes you have for the future, such as a specific university program you want to attend or more generally about a specific field of study that interests you (e.g. business, engineering, etc.).

In the Current Education section, list the academic courses you’ve taken over the past year and ones that you’re planning to take in the future (Grades 11 and 12 are usually enough here).

If you run out of rows, right click, and press ‘Insert Row Below’ and add as many as you need.

List the course name/code, your final or expected grade, and any additional information you think your coach might need to know about that specific course.

Here’s what Amara’s Current Education section looks like in her Blueprint (check out another complete Blueprint example here):

Course Name
Final (or Expected) Grade
Comments (e.g. Prereq)
Gr 11 English (ENG3U)
88% (final)
Gr 11 Functions (MCR3U)
98% (final)
Gr 11 Accounting (BAF3U)
88% (final)
Gr 11 French (FSF3U)
87% (final)
Gr 11 Biology (SBI3U)
85% (final)
Gr 12 English (ENG4U)
94% (expected)
Prereq, Took Online
Gr 12 Functions (MHF4U)
89% (expected)
Gr 12 Calc/Vectors (MCV4U)
96% (expected)

Next, turn your attention to the future in the Continued Studies section. Detail any post-secondary programs or certifications that are of interest to you and ones that you plan on applying to. In the Reasons section, briefly state why this program/school is of interest to you.

Here’s what Amara’s Continued Studies section looks like in her Blueprint: 

Reason: Briefly discuss why and how you will explore this interest.
Waterloo University
Accounting & Financial Management
I am interested in exploring ways that we can make housing more accessible to lower income households. I would like to learn about accounting and financial management as a way to inform my efforts to solve this important issue, and perhaps start my own real estate brokerage one day.
Queen's University
Smith Commerce
I am interested in learning more about starting and maintaining a successful business, and I believe that Queen’s would help me achieve that goal. I am also interested in applying to Western Ivey and U of T Rotman.

Self Awareness Skills: Extracurriculars & Initiatives 

Use the Extracurriculars & Initiatives section to talk about the activities you’re involved in (both in the past and present), as well any awards and/or certifications you’ve received during high school.  


Your extracurricular activities can be anything you’re involved in outside the classroom, like school clubs, volunteer activities, conferences you’ve presented at, places you’ve volunteered, small businesses you’ve started, a summer part-time job, etc. 

REMEMBER: No activity is too small! 

List the name of the activity, your role/main responsibilities, how long you did it for, and whether or not you plan to continue it in the future.  

In the ‘Outcomes & Impact’ section, tell us the results of all your hard work. This can be a certain amount of money you raised for a fundraiser, skills you builded because of this activity, etc.

Here is Amara’s Extracurriculars Activities section in her Blueprint (check out another complete Blueprint example here):

Extracurricular/Initiative Name
Your Role
Outcomes & Impact
Markham Aquatic Club
Competitive Swimmer
Travelled, trained, and raced five days per week with competitive racing club at provincial-level meets
Student Council
Head of Events
Manage a $30k+ budget for major school events; effectively executed ten events across school year with a 20% increase in year-over-year attendance
Ping Pong Club
Recruited team of 15 active and motivated players; Co-ordinated launch of charity tournament, featured on local news, raising over $5k in ticket sales to Sick Kids
Markham Builds Abroad
Founder and President
Started non-profit group service trip building houses and schools in less fortunate towns abroad; held one trip in Ometepe, Nicaragua and in 2021 in Beresford, New Brunswick

Use this section to tell us more about awards you’ve received or certifications you’ve earned (and ones that you plan to get in the future).

These don’t have to just be school-related. You could list a safety certification you got for babysitting or an award you received in a photography contest. 

Please also list awards that you received beyond just yourself, like an award you won with your cheerleading team or a trophy you got for a basketball tournament.

Write the name of the certification/award, who awarded it, and when you received it. 

In the ‘Outcomes & Impact’ section, tell us what you achieved with this award/certification. This can either be a specific amount of money you won, where you ranked in a competition, or successfully completing a course for a certification. 

Here’s Amara’s Award & Certifications section in her Blueprint (check out another complete Blueprint example here): 

Scholarship/Award Name
Received By
Year(s) Received
Outcomes & Impact
Academic Excellence Award
Gr 11 Functions
Highest mark in class of 20+ students (98%)
National Lifeguard Service (NLS)
Lifesaving Society
Completed after first attempt
7th Place
Skills Canada Virtual National Competition
Top 20 placement in Carpentry competition against over 250 students. Top-placed female.
Socially-Responsible Real Estate Development Certification
Completed 5-week online course taught by Dr. Susskind from Harvard/MIT
MVP & League Championship Team
Markham Hockey Society
Top 5 in the league for total points

Self Awareness Skills: Employment & Volunteering 

Use this section to tell us a bit more about other opportunities you’ve had in the last 3-4 years. 

These can be unpaid/internship opportunities, part-time jobs, or volunteering experiences. 

Having these all mapped out will really help you later as you’re writing your essays because you’ll have a full view of all the amazing things you did to develop skills that university application reviewers want to see, like leadership, teamwork, problem solving, etc.  

Fill out the columns with the organization name, your role in this business/opportunity, and how long you did it for.

In the ‘Outcomes & Impact’ section, tell us more about exactly what you achieved during this experience. This can be how much money you earned during your summer job, doors that your internship opened for you when it was done, or volunteer hours you did at your local museum. Anything positive that came out of this experience is what we’re looking for here.

Here is Amara’s Employment/Internships section in her Blueprint (check out another complete Blueprint example here):  

Organization Name
Your Role
Outcomes & Impact
Competitive Carpentry
Earned $7.5k in revenue in the first summer with seven clients
Lifeguard Business
Earned over $500 last summer
Hovercraft Real Estate
Founder & CEO
Started real estate holdings company with initial purchase made in northern New Brunswick
Markham Hockey Association
Assistant Coach
Over 100 volunteer hours earned
Bryan's Bakery
Customer Service Rep
10% rate increase; Maintained a 5/5 TripAdvisor rating

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Self Awareness Skills: Health & Wellness

Taking time to focus on yourself and doing things that get rid of stress, anxiety, and negative thoughts is super important for your overall well-being. 

Universities and employers want to know you are maintaining strong mental health and wellness as well, so you’re not at risk of burnout.

We’ve broken this down into 3 sections: 

  1. Mental/Emotional: Tell us how you take care of your mind and how you’re feeling on a daily basis. This can be activities like reading a book at night, doing breathing exercises on your iPhone app, or having a no-phone policy after 8pm.
  2. Physical/Nutritional: Tell us how you take care of your body. This can be doing an epic spin class every Tuesday, making a delicious protein shake every morning, or taking your dog for a walk every night. 
  3. Social/Relational: Tell us about your relationships and how they make you a happier person. These can be activities like binge watching Outer Banks on Netflix, going out with your friends for dinner every Friday, or having monthly Zoom parties with your cousins.

In each section, list 2-3 helpful habits — or habits that contribute positively to your overall health and wellness in those particular areas.

Then, list 2-3 unhelpful habits — or habits that might distract you from keeping up with your helpful habits. These can be not-so-great habits that you hope to change or work on in the future. 

Here’s Amara’s Health & Wellness section in her Blueprint (check out another complete Blueprint example here):

self awareness skills

Self Awareness Skills: Finances & Scholarships

Having a good sense of your income/expenses and creating a financial plan can help you feel more confident that you’re planning for all aspects of your future.

In this section, tell us about any money habits and practices you currently have. 

First, list your funding and income. Here, describe ways you generate income, like a weekly allowance from your parents, a part time job, a summer lawn mowing business, etc. — basically anything that lets you get some extra cash. In the ‘Snapshot Today’ column, tell us how much each source of income and how much you get per month.

Next, provide a brief breakdown of your expenses and things you regularly spend money on, like your phone bill, entertainment (e.g. restaurants, going to the movies, etc.), your car if you have one. In the ‘Snapshot Today’ column, write how much each expense is per month

Finally, in the savings and investments section, tell us about any money you’ve saved over the years, as well as how much you try to save per month. 

Give yourself a rating for each of these 3 sections on a “Bad, Okay, or Good” scale. You and your coach will go through these on your Discovery call and talk about areas where you want to improve and they can help you make a plan for financial goals you have, like buying a house, paying off student loans, buying a car, etc.  

Here’s what Amara’s Finances & Scholarships section looks like in her Blueprint (check out an example of another complete Blueprint here): 

self awareness skills

Self Awareness Skills: Next Steps 

Once you’ve completed as much of your Student Identity Blueprint™ as you can, share it with your coach. 

The next actions you will need to complete can be found in your Tracker. 

During your Discovery call, your coach will go through this document with you and come up with a plan to help you be the best version of yourself in the future.

The next step is Design, where you will work with your coach to identify and execute BIG goals that are aligned with your interests and skills, and then come up with a comprehensive plan for achieving them. 

We’ve called this goal Set Audacious Yet Authentic Future Goals & Actions. Jump straight to that guide here.

Your Student Identity Blueprint™ is a summary of you. Use it as a living document — refer back to it throughout your coaching journey (and throughout your life). 

Add to it, make changes, read it before a big interview, or when writing your resume.

This document will be key as you write your university applications, apply to scholarships, prepare for job interviews, and so much more. It is a brief snapshot of how far you’ve come and captures your big plans for your future — and we can’t wait to see all the awesome things you’ll accomplish!

You’ve Got a Dedicated Coach in Your Corner

For over a decade, we have successfully helped thousands of students achieve more than they ever thought possible.

Our 1-on-1 Youth Coaching fills that gap that most high schools miss. We can help you build self-awareness through probing questions and assessments, set bigger goals to elevate your extracurriculars and future career plans, and improve skills that matter on supplementary applications, such as interviewing, communication, critical thinking, and creativity.

We use a coaching methodology, called ‘full student’ development, that’s been proven to increase your chances of admission to top-tier universities and obtaining competitive jobs/internships.

So, what are you waiting for? Fulfill your post-secondary potential with the mentorship and coaching you’ve always wanted! 🙂

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