How often do you look mirror? Before leaving our home for anywhere, we look at the mirror to make sure that we look good right? We spend much time and money to look physically good but we don’t give a couple of minutes to make sure that our life is going good, our behavior is good. Does our physical look, our external attire matter more than our life, our internal emotions? We immediately undress the clothes that don’t suit on us, ,but we put the behavior, weaknesses that don’t suit on our life, which makes our life harder and worst. But still we keep on doing this because we lack the knowledge of the reason and the solution.
Self-reflection also known as personal reflection or personal analysis is about taking time to think about, evaluate and give serious thought to our behaviors, weaknesses, strengths, attitudes, motivations and desires. It is the deliberate time set aside to slow down your day to day works and look back on your day, month or year in an attempt to learn from your experiences, desires and feelings. Human self-reflection is the capacity of humans to exercise their fundamental nature and essence. Many people relate self reflection with meditation and think that it is too close to the concept of Eastern meditation but it is not necessarily the case. There are many people who take self-reflection as Christian practice or spiritual aspect which is not totally true. The spiritual aspect defines it as a powerful tool for you to grow and encounter God in the inner workings of your heart. But in modern aspect, we define it as our ability to examine our own character, motives and actions in any situation.
We always keep moving, we push our life through our desires and action to look and be externally good but we don’t stop to reflect ourselves. Instead we waste our valuable time and energy judging others’ way of life. We stay in our relationships, jobs, peer groups, that are slowly killing and eventually directing us towards negativity, making us stressed, unhappy, frustrated. But still we don’t stop to give a serious thought on those things which leads the problem going deeper. We simply go through life without thinking, moving from one thing to the next without making time to evaluate whether things are actually going well. We don’t pause to think, to analyze and to determine what is going well and what isn’t working. The most unfortunate result of all these is that we often get stuck. That’s why we need to practice self-reflection which requires pause on the chaos of life simply taking the time to think and ponder about our life, which is not an easy thing for many people to do but is an incredibly valuable practice.
Some people find self reflection too difficult, some don’t understand the process, some knows but don’t like the process. The reason behind this negligence may be the lack of understanding why they need it, and what benefits they could gain out of this? It is not just about thinking process only, but helps to build emotional self-awareness. By taking time to ask yourself the important questions like who are you? What are you most grateful for? Are the people you spend the most time with support you, help you moving on or holding you back? Are they really loyal to you? What things are stopping you from pursuing your goals? you may gain a better understanding of your strengths, weaknesses, potentials, etc. It helps you to analyze your life from both macro and micro level. At a micro level, you can evaluate your responses to a particular circumstance and events while in macro level, you can evaluate the overall trajectory of your life. You can see where you’re headed, resolve whether you’re happy with the direction, and make adjustments as necessary.
There is a famous saying “insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results.” Pause here and think once, are you an insane? Are you repeating the same mistake again and again and still expecting a different result? If yes, then it’s time to have a serious thought on yourself, on your daily life, your daily routine. Slowing down and taking time to think about your life is extremely helpful in creating a better sense of who you are, who you want to be and how you will get there. Integrity increases when you take time to reflect on core values.
What if we stop thinking about our past and worrying about our unseen future and use this time by focusing on self realization and self analysis? Because unnecessary negative thoughts give nothing but mental weakness while self reflection may give us a new life which we were dreaming of since a long time. It is a definite truth that we can’t make everybody happy every time. But if we keep self analyzing, it may bring happiness not only into our lives but into others’ too. We can know our weaknesses, which helps us to realize our bad behavior because of which people are fed up with us. We spend much of our time blaming and back-biting others but hardly give time to realize our mistakes and value our worthiness. So, let’s start giving from a few minutes to ourselves, to know ourselves, to know the reason and goals of our life, our weaknesses and strengths. Let’s make our life and ourselves better. Let’s practise self reflection.