What is self-awareness and how can you cultivate it?

The buzzword “self-awareness” is really unnecessary. Awareness in and of itself will suffice. Awareness comes solely from being present. In the moment. From there you can see everything around you and in you. You are able to listen to your thoughts. You are able to see how you are interacting with the situation. By just being present, you can respond to every stimuli rather than react. And in most cases, you can see issues coming before they occur.
Awareness isn’t just about the moment. It is also about piecing moments together for a long period of time. In the world today we take what is given to us from our surroundings. Just like opening a puzzle box. It’s all in there. But until you put all of the pieces together in the right place, will you have the full picture.
In essence, awareness is having the whole picture. Self-awareness is knowing yourself completely.
One way to really learn about yourself is to practice the art of improv. Improv requires focus and presence every moment. As soon as you aren’t present, you lose focus and the whole thing falls apart. Improv is great practice for living in the moment and thus learning about yourself, your environment, and how they all intertwine.