What would be an appropriate word for "A journey of self discovery and introspection" or possibly, "To discover that you are not how you conceptualized yourself"?

  • A bus trip to Fresno?
    – Oldcat
    Apr 14, 2014 at 16:54
  • Maybe you should try a thesaurus like I did.
    – KCH
    Apr 14, 2014 at 17:01

5 Answers 5


Self-actualization has this sense in it.

The term was originally introduced by the organismic theorist Kurt Goldstein for the motive to realize one's full potential.

Expressing one's creativity, quest for spiritual enlightenment, pursuit of knowledge, and the desire to give to society are examples of self-actualization.

A detailed explanation from the book "Emotional Intelligence in Action: Training and Coaching Activities for Leaders, Managers, and Teams" by By Marcia Hughes, L. Bonita Patterson, James Bradford Terrell:

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When I think of someone going through introspection, self discovery, and change the word soul-searching pops into my head. The term searching would infer a journey and soul would infer inside yourself. It is quite possible that the 100s of adults that told me I had some soul-searching to do after getting in trouble as a kid helped answer this question.


Inner Trip may describe the experience you are referring to.

Just for reference:

Inner Trip Reiyukai International (ITRI) is a progressive Non-Governmental Organization in the field of mental, physical and spiritual well being and education. The organization facilitates and implements projects in the area of value education and spiritual growth for all round growth of human personality.

  • I also thought of Vision Quest but these simply brush the outer edges of what I was thinking. Apr 14, 2014 at 16:51

Introspection is defined as:

  • Observation or examination of one's own mental and emotional state, mental processes, etc.; the act of looking within oneself."

I had the same question for AP Literature after reading heart of Darkness, and I think this hit the nail on the head.

  • Introspection is the main action that I was thinking of but not the only action. In the same sense that 'growing up' does not wholly describe a coming of age story even though the story is about a person growing up, 'Introspection' doesn't really capture the shades of meaning that come with a suggestion like 'Inner Trip'; the meaning is wider, more dependent upon the interpretation and biases of the reader. Jan 25, 2017 at 15:24

metanoia (n.) the journey of changing one's mind, heart, self, or way of life.

also (n.) spiritual conversion or awakening; fundamental change of character

and also (n.) to change one's mind or purpose

  • 2
    You need to properly attribute your source(s) by adding the name of the dictionary and (if available) a link.
    – Laurel
    Jan 22, 2018 at 17:19

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