The Key of Reflection
By: Jessica Manuel
Self discovery is uncomfortable, but if you’re not following your progression how are you going to celebrate the small victories? How are you going to be proud of yourself?
Reflection is not only necessary, it is non-negotiable.
If you want to be your best, then find out where you can improve. There is no better way to be proud of where you are than to reflect on where you’ve been. Think about it, if you reading your journal entry from when you were sixteen (assuming that you’re older now) it would be easy to relive those thoughts, emotions and experiences – perhaps laugh and say “man, how things have changed…”
There is something valuable that comes with reflection, and that is wisdom. People always say wisdom comes with age, but I disagree. I believe wisdom comes with time, so generally it comes with age because we don’t TAKE the time to reflect. It is an opportunity to dig deeper; an opportunity to fall in love with yourself; it is an opportunity to see and celebrate the big picture.
Why don’t people do it? Speaking from personal experience, I find that the commitment tied to reflection is MASSIVE, if you do it correctly. There are times when writing down your thoughts, feelings and future plans may seem like wasted energy but its not. The fear of commitment comes from knowing there is always something you can work on.
There is beauty in that self-discovery whether we like to admit it or not.
The truth is, it is uncomfortable to sit in your own silence. That’s one of the reasons why we distract ourselves with social media, relationships, work or dependancies like alcohol and drugs. We do not reflect because we are scared of our imperfections.
A switch the perspective….
Instead of chaining yourself with regret, take time to notice the beauty behind your imperfections. Those qualities are what make you authentic. Why strive for a version of someone else’s ‘perfect’ when you can focus on your version of ‘perfect’? Understand that you will never be perfect.
It is healthy to be unsatisfied so that you continue improving… Don’t be discouraged.
We all are imperfect, it’s the only thing we all have in common. How you chose to react to those imperfections will dictate your level of success; are you going to let it motivate you or chain you down?
Reading the most painful entries in my journal brings me the most joy today. It reminds me of where I was and what it took to accomplish the life I have today.
The step-by-step journey of failure, brokenness and discontentment are the same things that contribute to making me a strong, courageous and content person today. It’s impossible to enjoy the journey if I didn’t write it down, reflect, and take time to understand the beauty in it.
If you haven’t started writing your story or taking five minutes to write a paragraph of events each day, in ten years you may miss out on the beautiful “ah-ha” moments; moments that will bring laugher, tears or clarity to your imperfections.
Remember, there is no progression to perfection without the art of reflection.