Taking Time to Reflect

It’s worth taking some time to reflect on how you felt at the start of lockdown, how you’ve dealt with lockdown and how you feel about the next phase.  This will help to ground you, will help to remind you that you are in control of your thoughts and choices, that you are capable of dealing with a new and uncertain situation and that you are resilient.

What is taking time to reflect?

So, reflecting is about addressing: Where am I now?

  • What are my areas for concern?
  • Are there any areas I would like to improve on?
  • What positives can I take from this and what can I learn from them and how can I develop on them?
  • What new goals and intentions would I like to set?

Reflection should be approached in a curious, non-judgmental and solutions-focused way, in order to explore a thought, feeling or event. The aim is to help us to improve, to problem-solve and plan for the future.

What does being reflective involve?

Being reflective involves:

  • Takes a curious and questioning approach.
  • Asking what the learning in this is?
  • Being honest with yourself.
  • Being open minded.
  • Not being judgemental.

By reflecting without judgement and without blame, we can better understand problems, issues and barriers that we face and then seek better solutions.  We are undoubtedly going to be facing some new issues and barriers in the time ahead, so reflecting on who we are, what we want, what is important to us and how we want to go about overcoming any obstacles we might face and achieve our goals is an important step.

What is the cycle of reflection?

The cycle of reflection involves:

  • Identify issue(s) both positive and negative and exploring their characteristics.
  • Planning strategies for improving on the positives, learning to transfer them to other areas of your life and how to develop them to make you stronger, as well as the negatives so that you can find ways to overcome them.
  • Experimenting with possible solutions and having a go at implementing them – keep this as a learning and trial and error phase so that you are exploring and experimenting and continuing with the learning.
  • Evaluating the strategy – review the positives and negatives again and go through the cycle again.

What should you ask yourself when reflecting?

Some questions to ask yourself when reflecting include:

  • What are the positive thoughts, feelings and habits or behaviours that have helped me through this?
  • What did I enjoy the most and why?
  • What have I learned about myself?
  • What was most challenging and how did I overcome this?
  • What was positive? How do I identify this as positive?
  • What was negative? How do I identify this as negative?
  • What lead me to make the decisions I did?
  • What was of value in this for me?
  • Knowing what I know now, what will I take forward?
  • What are some thoughts/habits/behaviours I can keep, change or implement?
  • How will I do this?

So, there you have it, we might be in the middle of a global pandemic and our lives may have been turned upside down, but we still have the power and control to develop and grow from this experience. We can make some positive changes to our thought, emotional and behavioural patterns in order to make decisions in how we move forward with purpose and intention.

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About Sara Wright

Sara Wright is a confidence coach based in Leicester. She specialises in helping improve people’s mental health self-esteem. She has over 20 years’ experience, as well as a BSc and MSc to back up her practical knowledge. To find out more, check out her website and Facebook page.