We often go through our lives focused on achievement. Focused on getting what we want. Sometimes we feel stuck. Like nothing we do is enough. Sometimes it feels like we are trying everything we possibly can yet simply aren’t seeing the outcome we would like. At any of these times, the practice of self-reflection is vital.
We often think of self-reflection as looking back on what happened, on how we reacted, on what we did well or could have done differently. This is also a huge part of what self-reflection is. There is more to it though. Everything I’ve said so far is focused on the present. Practicing self-reflection in the present moment is focused on connecting with your desires and dreams.
You see, self-reflection gives you the opportunity to check in with what it is you truly want. When you know and understand what it is you want, your desires become aligned with your thoughts, words, and actions. This is how our dreams become our reality. It is not magic, it's aligned living. Self-reflection in you checking it with what it is you truly want. Here is why you need to practise self-reflection.
What you want will keep changing as you keep growing.
We often think we know what we want but it takes a lot of conscious work to be sure that what you want is based solely on your desires and not outside influences.
In a busy world that is constantly moving, the practice of self-reflection requires you to slow down.
Through self-reflection, you start tuning in your own desires and tuning out of the pressure, expectations, and preconceived notions of what your life is ‘supposed' to look like.
The issue I see a lot with people who are frustrated with why they aren’t achieving certain things that they want in life is that their desires simply aren’t aligned with their actions. This can happen for many reasons. A common one is often fear. Imagine this, you want to travel the world and run your own business. You are constantly working on business ideas, saving money so that you can travel, and everything else you think you need to make your dream your reality. At the same time, your dream also scares you. The thought of being self-employed seems risky. Constantly travelling seems expensive and scary. Consciously or subconsciously your fear is alive and sabotaging your dream because somewhere in the back of your mind you believe that given how scary your dream is and all the way you could fail, maybe it’ll be okay, even better, if it doesn't work out.
Now, if you take the time to reflect you can start to understand that fear. Spend time feeling it, moving through it, understanding why it is present. The fear could be there for many different reasons. Maybe it’s there to ask you to be brave. Maybe it’s there because deep down you aren’t sure if this is something you want or something you are focused on because someone said it is a good dream. Maybe this fear is asking you to love yourself more.
Whatever the reason for the fear is, you can only begin to decipher it if you take the time to reflect on it. This is how we make our dreams come through. It’s a mixture of hard work, reflection, and aligned living. If you are feeling lost, stuck, or frustrated, here are 4 ways to practise self-reflection: Journal, Meditate, Spend some time in nature, and Focus on your breath.
[The writer is a Transformational Mindset and Empowerment Mentor, Business Coach for Women, and Host of the podcast Live Inspired; Please contact the author for details about ‘HEALTHY HABITS | THE MINDSET RESET’, an 8-day transformation. vanessaseymour.com, email@example.com; Instagram: @vanessa.seymour]