ReflectionMar 29, 2021
When was the last time you reflected on your day?
This is a fairly new part of my evening ritual, and it can really make a difference.
A lot of people have a morning pages or journaling practice to start their day, but I haven’t heard a lot of people talk about ending your day with something similar. One of my friends and a fantastic coach, @carolelizabethcoaching led a call I was on a couple of weeks ago that was all about establish an evening routine, and I learned a few things.
First, I already have several things I do every evening, but I hadn’t formalized them in my head to be part of my official evening routine. So…I did that the very same evening as the callJ, and that required zero effort on my part!
Second, I was right. Very few people talk about an evening routing, and even fewer actually have one. Since I have experienced the impact a morning routine has on the rest of my day, I had no doubt that an evening ritual would add to my attitude of gratitude and set up tomorrow to be a great day!
Of course, you can call your reflection time anything you want. The purpose of it is simply to reflect on the day. Carol spends the last 30 minutes of her workday asking herself what went well today, what didn’t go so well, and what she could’ve done differently. I do my reflecting a little closer to bedtime. I start with listing the things I am grateful for from the day, which can be things that went well or not. Yes, I can be grateful for something not going well, because there is always a lesson to be learned. Rather than allow self-judgment to rear its ugly head, I look for the lesson, because I know that thing that didn’t go so well is here to serve me.
Reflection is an opportunity to appreciate whatever happened in your day, and it can even identify new dreams or desires. It’s another way that change can come into your life, and it can be a lot less stressful than other ways🙂.
And, there’s something else here. You know I love Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, and reflection is what you see in the looking glass — the mirror. More importantly, a reflection almost always says more about the reflector than what is being reflected. That’s right, it’s all about you, my friend. If you reflect on an argument you had, your thoughts are telling you something about you – NOT the other person. So, there’s the lesson, right?
In Through the Looking Glass, we are reminded that when you look at a reflection in the mirror, you’re seeing the opposite of what you see in this world. So, maybe, just maybe, we need to take a different perspective. Can you make that shift? For me, sometimes it’s easy to do, and sometimes…not so much.
Because I love journaling, and I know the power of the written word, I like to write out my reflections, but like I said, this is a relatively new practice to me. I’m not all that disciplined about writing my reflections, but when I do, they almost always point something else out to me, or even come up again in a day or two. That’s when I appreciate that I wrote it down, because I can go back and read what I was thinking at that time. Then, I can see if I successfully shifted my perspective, and either try again or choose to return to my original belief.
I know for me to get more disciplined about writing my reflections, I have to schedule it. I have “morning pages” as an entry in my planner every single day, so as I do my weekly planning today, I’m adding “reflection” to my schedule – you guessed it – in writing🙂. While I was scheduling my reflections for the week, it occurred to me that reflection is not only a great thing to do before reviewing and updating my plan for tomorrow, but also for the coming week, the coming month, the coming quarter, and even the coming year. In other words, before you plan your next block of time, reflect on how the last block went. I’m now adding reflecting to all my planning blocks. I challenge you to do the same.
Do you have a reflection practice? If you do, do you write it out? How has it helped you?
All my life, no matter what change I’ve experienced, I’ve been able to use journaling to remember who I am, begin to understand what I can learn from this change, and how my experience can help other people going through something similar. Get my free prompts, “Journaling for Answers,” and start finding your own answers within.
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