Welcome to winter where the days are shorter and it is cold outside. Winter is a time between finishing and starting over. Harvest has ended and the fall planting is complete. The earth is recovering from the growth and harvesting of crops. Nothing is happening on the surface. There are no leafs on the trees. The earth is frozen and dormant. It is a time of rest.
Most people tend to stay indoors when the weather turns cold and snowy. And just as the earth has slowed down and taken a rest, so should we. This is a great time to be still, remember and reflect. It is time for inward activity.
Self reflection is defined as: meditation or serious thought about character, actions and motives. Reflecting where you came from, where you are and where you are going can assist you in moving forward after your loss. Do not worry if you do not know where you are going. That is part of the discovery.
Why is it important to take time for reflection? It helps you to clarify your thoughts. You get a better understanding of yourself, your experiences and your relationships. Reflection will lead you to self awareness, valuable insights and breakthroughs. You will find areas where you need to take responsibility and it will help you to release emotional attachments in other areas. Reflection helps you focus on what is important so that you can create meaning in your life.
Self reflection is not easy. In fact it is messy and uncomfortable. You may become irritable and defensive. It will reveal your faults, weaknesses, insecurities, mistakes and failures. Reflection requires effort, openness and honesty. Allow yourself to be vulnerable during this process. You may discover just how wonderful, kind, compassionate, strong, funny, gifted and talented you are during this process. The rewards are worth it!
Let’s get started!
Use the photo albums, scrapbooks, journals or dairies and mementos as a guide. There is no right or wrong way to reflect on your life. You may want to start off by asking yourself the following:
- Who am I? That may not be a very easy question to answer after you have been through a loss. Look at you photos of yourself. What describing words come to mind when you look at the photos? What age are you in the photo?
- What are your accomplishments? They can be big or small accomplishments. It can be anything that you have achieved. Maybe you quit smoking, lost weight, wrote a book, got your degree or anything that you set out to do. Are they personal or professional accomplishments?
- What are my gifts and talents? Most people do not think that they have gifts or talents. We all have certain things that we do well. These are your gifts and talents. It is not just about being musical or artsy.
- Who are the people in the photos with you? Describe the people who are in the photos. What relationship do you have with them? Are they still in your life?
- What are you doing in the photos? Looking at the context of the photo will tell you a lot about yourself, your beliefs and what you value. Do you notice a theme?
Keep digging and asking yourself questions about your life. Record the answers to you questions so you can examine your life. Take your time with this exercise. You don’t want to rush through it. You want to get as much from it as you can.
Reflection is not meant to be a one time thing. You can reflect daily, weekly, monthly or yearly. You may do a combination of those listed. Reflection keeps you moving forward in life.
You are not alone, I am here to walk along side of you.
I would love to hear from you. Let me know if this content is helpful or just say hello. I look forward to reading your comments.
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