Chinmay, regarding your request for ‘some practical methods/techniques by which one can attend to the self’, being self-attentive (or at least trying to be so) is itself the practical method or technique, so no other method or technique is required to be self-attentive.
Is there any method or technique to see whatever is in front of you? Just looking at it is the method or technique. To look at it and thereby see it no other method or technique is required. Likewise to see what we actually are we just need to look at ourself. Just looking at ourself is the method or technique. To look at ourself and thereby see what we actually are no other method or technique is required.
Of course, what we actually are is not anything physical, so we cannot see ourself with our physical eyes or any of our other physical senses, so when it is said that we should just look at ourself and thereby see what we actually are, the terms ‘look at’ and ‘see’ are used in a metaphorical sense, not a literal one. Though we cannot look at or see ourself with our physical eyes, we can do so with our mental eye, which is our power of attention, so what is meant in this context by ‘look at’ and ‘see’ is just ‘attend to’ and ‘be aware of’.
We are always aware of ourself, but we are generally not attentively aware of ourself, because we tend to be more interested in being aware of other things, so we devote all or most of our attention in waking and dream to things other than ourself, and hence we neglect to attend to ourself. This self-negligence is what is called pramāda, which is the root of all our problems, so the solution to it is only sadā-apramāda — perpetual non-negligence — which means constant self-vigilance or self-attentiveness.
However, when we start this practice we will not be able to be self-attentive perpetually, but we can at least be so intermittently, and by persevering in our attempts to be self-attentive as much as possible we will gradually cultivate the skill to hold on to being so even while we are engaged in other activities. So to get started all we need to try to do is just draw our attention back to ourself whenever we notice that it has been diverted away towards anything else.
Now we are aware of many things, but whatever else we may be aware of we are always aware of ourself. Even when we are aware of nothing else, as in sleep, we are aware of ourself, so self-awareness is our fundamental experience, and the background or screen on which awareness of other things appears and disappears. Therefore what is this fundamental self-awareness that we always experience? We just need to look at it — attend to it — and see.
This fundamental self-awareness is what we actually are, so it is not an object, and hence being self-attentive does not entail attending to any object. It is just a matter of being attentively self-aware — that is, being attentively aware of the awareness that we actually are.
How to do so, you may ask, to which the only practical answer is: just try. Just as the only way to learn how to ride a bicycle is to persistently try to do so, the only way to learn how to be attentively self-aware is to persistently try to do so. Only by persistent practice can we learn any art, whether it be a physical art such as riding a bicycle, a mental art such as understanding a foreign language, or this subtlest art of all: the art of just being attentively self-aware.
In your second comment you describe other practices that you have done in the past, but all such practices entail attending to and being aware of something other than yourself. But who is the one who is aware of all those other things? That is what you need to see. Whatever else you may be aware of, you just need turn your attention back towards yourself, the one who is aware.
Being attentively self-aware is an extremely subtle practice, so it may seem too difficult or abstract if you have not tried it, but if you persevere in trying it will become increasingly clear to you what it actually is, and how easy it actually is.
Of course how easy or difficult it will seem to be depends on how much love we have to be aware of ourself alone, and conversely how much desire we have to be aware of anything else. So long as our desires to be aware of any other things are strong, they will tend to draw our attention away from ourself towards those other things, so we will experience an inner resistance to our attempts to be self-attentive, and hence being steadily self-attentive will seem to us to be difficult.
However, even though it may be difficult for us to hold on to being steadily self-attentive, if we persevere in trying it will become increasingly clear to us that being self-attentive is itself very easy, and that what make it seem difficult is only our own reluctance to be perpetually self-attentive and hence aware of nothing other than ourself, which is what we should be aiming for. Nevertheless, no matter how strong our desires to experience other things may be, if we persevere in our attempts to be steadily self-attentive, or at least intermittently self-attentive for brief moments here and there, our desires for other things will be gradually weakened, and thus we will eventually succeed in our efforts to be aware of ourself alone, to the complete exclusion of everything else.
Therefore if you really want to know how to attend to yourself, the only way is to try to do so, and to persevere in trying until you succeed. There is no other way, and there are no shortcuts. This is the direct path back to ourself, so it entails nothing other than just attending to ourself alone. Any other method or technique would involve attending to something other than ourself, so it would be an unnecessary distraction. Let us therefore be bold and embark on this path with single-minded determination to try as much as possible to attend to ourself alone.
As Bhagavan advised us in tenth paragraph of Nāṉ Yār?:
தொன்றுதொட்டு வருகின்ற விஷயவாசனைகள் அளவற்றனவாய்க் கடலலைகள் போற் றோன்றினும் அவையாவும் சொரூபத்யானம் கிளம்பக் கிளம்ப அழிந்துவிடும். அத்தனை வாசனைகளு மொடுங்கி, சொரூபமாத்திரமா யிருக்க முடியுமா வென்னும் சந்தேக நினைவுக்கு மிடங்கொடாமல், சொரூபத்யானத்தை விடாப்பிடியாய்ப் பிடிக்க வேண்டும். [...]Let us therefore follow his advice by tenaciously trying to cling fast to being self-attentive and thereby avoid being distracted by any thoughts about our own inability, because our inability is not real, but seems real only because we imagine it to be so, and we imagine it to be so only because we still have lingering viṣaya-vāsanās — desires to be aware of things other than ourself. The only way to vanquish such desires is by clinging tenaciously to self-attentiveness, as he advises us here.
toṉḏṟutoṭṭu varugiṉḏṟa viṣaya-vāsaṉaigaḷ aḷavaṯṟaṉavāy-k kaḍal-alaigaḷ pōl tōṉḏṟiṉum avai-yāvum sorūpa-dhyāṉam kiḷamba-k kiḷamba aṙindu-viḍum. attaṉai vāsaṉaigaḷum oḍuṅgi, sorūpa-māttiram-āy irukka muḍiyumā v-eṉṉum sandēha niṉaivukkum iḍam koḍāmal, sorūpa-dhyāṉattai viḍā-p-piḍiyāy-p piḍikka vēṇḍum. [...]
Even though viṣaya-vāsanās [inclinations or desires to be aware of things other than oneself], which come from time immemorial, rise in countless numbers like ocean-waves, they will all be destroyed when svarūpa-dhyāna [self-attentiveness] increases and increases. Without giving room even to the doubting thought ‘Is it possible to dissolve so many vāsanās and remain only as svarūpa [my own actual self]?’ it is necessary to cling tenaciously to svarūpa-dhyāna. [...]