As we head into this week of giving thanks, I wanted to talk about an important topic, and that’s taking time for reflection. It’s something we’re prompted to do at this time of year as we think of what we’re thankful for, reflect on all our blessings at Christmas, and think about what has gone on this year as we move into a new year. But it’s also something that we should be doing on a regular basis to make sure that we’re in touch with ourselves, our feelings and what’s going on in our lives. Why? Because taking time for reflection means that we’re able to recognize and celebrate more of the good that goes on in our lives and we’re able to catch the stuff that in the past has ended up being serious and huge mistakes or issues before they get that way.
It’s not always easy to find the motivation to do reflection, perhaps because it echoes our days of education and grades and we didn’t have great experiences then, or perhaps because we don’t want to add another thing to all we do. But reflection is one of the healthiest and safest ways to grow and make sure that you’re on the path that’s most fulfilling, interesting, supportive and healthy for you. But if you make a point of always reflecting on both the positive as well as the need-to-be-worked-on, and not just the issues, it does become easier.
Reflection time doesn’t have to be complicated, drawn out or a really big deal, it can just be 5 minutes you take at the beginning and/or end of your day each day. Yes, sometimes it is a little more complicated like when you go over the bank statements or spending with your partner. But on a daily basis? It can be simply reviewing your to-do list. It can be a journal entry. It can be just you sitting with a beverage and just thinking, with a note pad or your favorite device close at hand in case you come up with something that is important to remember or is a breakthrough.
Try it out this week as we head into Thanksgiving and make regular time for reflection, and see how it works for you and what it can positively add to your life. You may be surprised at how much you can think of that you’re thankful for.