Disclaimer: Self reflection is a good thing and necessary to elevate our lives, it can also be challenging and requires discipline.
I know it’s hard to find out something different from the visual and mental representation that we already have of ourselves. From my experience, once you embark on self-reflection, you either feel like a million bucks or like roadkill. You know how it is with having a crush, you get to know them and eventually you get crushed because they don’t look so iconic to you anymore. Yeah, that’s how getting to know yourself better can feel, however, it’s not always the case.
“The unexamined life is not worth living.”Socrates
What Is Self Reflection
Self reflection is one of the ways in which we can learn certain things about ourselves that would help us change and improve our lives. When we self reflect, we take off the blinders and this allows us to see ourselves for who we truly are. When we are honest with ourselves, we are able to process our thoughts, learn from past mistakes and successes, and it gives us a fighting chance as we tackle the future. Another thing is that we are able to acknowledge our feelings instead of hiding behind them and this is a great way to progress.
Is Self Reflection Good Or Bad?
Self reflection can go both ways like I said earlier. When done in a constructive manner it brings about positive changes but if haphazardly done and focused only the negative aspects, it could cause a person to spiral down.
The brain is a survival mechanism constantly alert to our needs. Simi Rayat mentioned that if the brain receives signal that we feel threatened or out of our comfort zone, it is possible for our mind to deploy hacks and shortcuts to manage such situations. This will cause the brain to tell us lies that can mess with our decisions, thinking and interpretations.
Note: It is also important to try to understand where other people’s opinion of you are coming from in other to shield against the ones that have no benefits to you.
Why Self Reflect?
#For Growth and Understanding
“By three methods we may learn wisdom: First by reflection, which is the noblest; second by imitation, which is the easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.”Confucius
Nobody that I know of has cracked the code 100% on how to elevate the way they see themselves, but a lot of positive changes can come through self reflection. This can go a long way to help you get clarity and find your purpose. It also inspires growth and a better understanding of who you are as a person. Always remember it is important that you don’t lose sight of who you are.
#Gets Rid of Insecurities
“Don’t become too preoccupied with what is happening around you, pay more attention to what is going on within you.”Mary-Francis Winters
Perhaps you are in a low place and struggling with general anxiety, one of the best thing you can do for yourself is to self reflect. To fix a problem, it is important that you have to first know where it’s coming from and tackle it at the source unless it will persist.
#Improves Your Relationships
“Before I ask you to sit with me,
I must be able to sit with myself,
Before I ask you to accept my pain,
I have to accept the pain myself,
Before I ask you to love me,
I have to be madly in love with myself.”C.Thoth
Many times we are the problem in our relationships and we are not aware of it, because how we see ourselves can be skewed and misinterpreted. We are only able to take the necessary steps towards self improvement when we become aware of our faults and flaws. Self reflection leads to self awareness, which leads to better relationships with our families, friends and colleagues.
#Promotes Self Acceptance
“Time spent in self reflection is never wasted, it is an intimate date with yourself.”Paul TP Wong
When we are able to process our emotions and thoughts, we feel a greater connection to ourselves. It opens up our mind to several possibilities to explore those ideas that we have and channel them in a positive way. For example there are times I would repeat to myself, “I’m beautiful; I’m important; I’m not pathetic,” and so on. This happens a lot when I have intrusive thoughts that target my self confidence – pretty nasty stuff – and the only way for me is to channel positive energy to tackle them. I’m aware it makes all the difference to my physical and my mental health.
Ask yourself questions, especially the hard ones – you know those ones that makes you cringe or causes your chest to tighten . Be sure to reflect on your experiences; introspection is important and can help you track the things that you did, felt and thought at certain moments. You are going through your memories like a movie reel without editing parts of it. Don’t forget to take it easy on yourself, things that are not going right can be fixed with discipline and TLC (Tender, Love and Care).
I’m off to go do some self reflection (mehn things are about to get bloody up in here), wish me all the best.
Photo Credit: Rigozo
Articles on Self Reflection
- What’s The Truth?Our perception of the truth can be distorted…but we’ll still choose to die on that hill.
- Left BehindThe abandoned church stood like a man awaiting trial.
- How To Live Like A HeroAnd the pressure keeps growing and growing and growing until you feel like you are moments away from exploding.
- The Story of How I Met Mo-IsuThe apparition introduced himself as Mo.
- Saturdays Are For WeddingsIt is an unspoken rule that Saturdays are for weddings in Nigeria.