Last Updated on December 27, 2019
When was the last time you took a moment to reflect on your life? Maybe it was at the end of December when you were getting ready to welcome the new year (we all love a little end-of-the-year reflecting, right?). Other than that, there aren’t many times when we might feel compelled to spend time in self-reflection.
The truth is that many of us are so busy trying to move forward with our lives that we rarely take a moment to slow down and be at one with our thoughts. Plus, we often don’t recognize the importance of self-reflection and the impact it can have on our lives.
What if we made self-reflection part of our everyday routine instead of a yearly thing?
In my opinion, self-reflection is one of the best ways that you can shift your mindset, increase positivity in your life, and discover a greater connection to yourself.
Self-reflection has helped me to understand more about the way that I respond to situations, to not be completely oblivious to my faults, and to find ways that I can deal with situations positively instead of letting them consume me.
Today, I want to share the importance of self-reflection and why being a reflective person is so important for a positive mindset.
What is self-reflection?
Self-reflection is the process of bringing your attention to what’s happening in your life in a mindful and open-minded way.
Self-reflection is all about creating self-awareness. So many of us focus on getting ahead that we don’t necessarily take time to reflect on what’s going on within us.
There are many ways to practice self-reflection, but I’ve always used writing as a way to process my thoughts and feelings. Journaling has helped me to learn more about myself by identifying patterns, habits, and regular themes that come up in my life. If I never took the time to get my thoughts out of my head, I probably would not be the positive person that I am today.
Why is self-reflection important?
Self-reflection is one of the best things you can do to create a positive mindset and discover a greater connection to yourself. Here are seven reasons why you should make self-reflection a priority in your life:
1. To make sense of things
“There is no greater journey than the one that you must take to discover all of the mysteries that lie within you.” – Michelle Sandlin
Self-reflection can help you process your thoughts and feelings. When we keep our thoughts floating around in our heads, we only confuse or frustrate ourselves more. Getting your thoughts on paper can help you understand why you’re feeling a certain way and make those feelings a little easier to navigate.
Read This Next: A Simple Mindset Shift To Calm Anxious Thoughts
2. To uncover breakthroughs
“The soul usually knows what to do to heal itself. The challenge is to silence the mind.” – Caroline Myss
Whenever I write, I end up with some sort of solution to my problems. I recognize what I need to do next because everything is laid out in front of me. When we keep thinking the same thoughts over and over without taking action, we see our problems as bigger than they really are. By taking a moment to pause, reflect, and look within, you’ll find that you actually have many of the answers you’ve been seeking for so long.
Read This Next: 25 Self-Reflection Quotes for Harnessing Your Inner Power from Jen at Healing Brave
3. To challenge your thoughts
“Don’t believe everything you think.” – Byron Katie
Self-reflection offers us the opportunity to challenge our ways of thinking. Most of us have a tendency to ruminate on the bad things; for example, our perceived weaknesses, mistakes we’ve made, or embarrassing moments. When you actually take the time to reflect and write these things down, it’s important to ask yourself if you really believe them. Eventually, you’ll start to realize that the things you tell yourself about yourself are not always true.
Read This Next: How To Move Past Self-Doubt And Do That Thing Anyway
4. To recognize change & track progress
“Self-reflection is so healthy. When I record the details of what I’m going through, whether it’s a relationship issue or negative thoughts, I can look back and see how far I’ve come. It makes me proud to see my progress and how I got through a bad situation.” – Kelly Rowland
Self-reflection allows us to look back and see where we’ve come from. If you take the time to write down a few thoughts about your day, you can look back on it in weeks, months, or years later and see how much has changed. This can help you recognize that the things you were so worried about before were perhaps not so significant.
5. To increase self-awareness
“Change requires two things: a goal, and an awareness of where one currently is in order to assess the discrepancy between the two.” – Psychology Today
If you’re on your own self-improvement journey, you need to know both where you’re going and where you are right now. Without self-awareness, we can’t fully understand our emotions, values, goals, or strengths. I’ve learned so much about myself simply by reflecting on the place I’m at right now and considering how it will help me get to where I want to be.
Read This Next: Why Self-Awareness Is Your Greatest Asset
6. To inspire self-acceptance
“The journey into self-love and self-acceptance must begin with self-examination… until you take the journey of self-reflection, it is almost impossible to grow or learn in life.” – Iyanla Vanzant
I’m all about POSITIVE self-reflection and making sure that if I ever say or write something negative about myself, I follow it up with something good. This has helped me to increase my self-acceptance and keep going even when I doubt myself.
For example, I was having one of those days when I kept comparing myself to everyone. In my mind, I was telling myself that I wasn’t beautiful or pretty enough. I started to write because I knew this was something I needed to let go of. As I started to write down my feelings, I began to wonder WHY I needed to believe I was *pretty*. What importance did that have in my life? It seemed so inconsequential to who I am as a person. I started to write, “I just have to be confident in myself and know that I AM beautiful, inside and out.”
Read This Next: 5 Tips For Dealing With Your Inner Critic
7. To live with more intention
“When you’re living deliberately, you’re living from a position of responsibility; you’re making choices with greater awareness.” – Lauren Mackler
Reflecting on what’s going on in your life can simply serve as a reminder of what you do on a daily basis. Most of our days end up blending into one another, so regular reflection can be an opportunity to show you that the days are different. On the other hand, it can encourage you to think about how you can add more joy and fun into your daily life.
Read This Next: How To Add More Mindfulness Into Your Everyday
How Do You Practice Self-Reflection?
I hope this post has encouraged you to make self-reflection a bigger part of your life Remember that reflection is not about overthinking or focusing on the past – this is a time to connect with yourself and uncover your hidden depths!
I’ve never really been active with self-reflection except when I think about my year at the end. This year, I’ve started a gratitude journal which helps me reflect on the day and has helped me feel more positive.
A gratitude journal is a great way to make self-reflection happen, Steph!
This was such an insightful post and SO true. Why do we limit self-reflection to the beginning of each year instead of the end of each day? Journaling is definitely my go-to form of self-reflection as well. It helps me become more self-aware, track my growth, and sometimes find solutions to my problems like you said! I would encourage everyone to journal– it’s so beneficial!
Mia | https://www.verymuchmia.com/
Sounds like we’re on the same wavelength, Mia! Yay for self-reflection :)
Completely agree, it has helped me alot.
I started practicing self-reflection sometime last year and it has helped a lot in all aspects of my life. I have gotten to know my self a lot better, my relationship with others have improved and I am content. Please, check out my blog at http://mylifeingreens.com
That’s so amazing to hear, Zayn!
I’ve been practicing self reflection for almost a year, with journaling and meditation daily. This has changed my life in so many ways and everything you wrote in your post is so needed for everyone! Thank you for sharing it so beautifully!
Love hearing that! Thanks so much, Juanita!
Silly question, but I have been searching for a great pair of ankle boots, What kind are you wearing in the picture?
Hey, Jamie! They are from the brand Sole Society :) I don’t think they make this exact style anymore, but they have some other great options.
Self-reflection and journaling were my top 2 reasons why I made so much personal progress in 2017 – it’s important to take time and reflect because it not only allows you to learn from your experiences but it also gives you space and time to process LIFE!!
Seppy | http://www.elleisforlove.com
I LOVE hearing that, Seppy! It’s amazing how much you can learn and grow from yourself if you take the time to look inwards.
This was interesting to read because I never practice self reflection until I accomplish a certain goal. Then thats when I look back on my life and discover things I had to go through to get to that point. Things I learned, things that I should’ve done differently and of course the good in those situations. I guess I will have to get better with self reflection and not just pay attention to it when I am completing a goal.
It’s an interesting article. I guess I will start following your blogs to get more insight. I believe self-reflection is definetily important for all of us.
Thanks for the great blog.
I have started to write about mindfulness. Do share your thoughts
Self reflection is a powerful skill as it can help to change the narrative of our story so that they find personal growth. However, it does require that one be honest , and non-judgmental with themselves.
Thanks for the great read!
Absolutely – honesty and non-judgment are so important
Self reflection is very necessary and should definitely be apart of our daily routine. It would help us to slow down, evaluate our selves and also to congratulate ourselves, examine ourselves and be able to achieve our goals.
Self reflection can help you learn and understand yourself. It helps with accepting the person you are and also gives you a reason to live with more intention.