There are 2 times of the year when I am mst reflective; September (my birthday month) and December (the pre-amble to the new year).
While most folks are planning vacations, travelling, attending events, and celebrating the holidays, I recently thought about how much time I spend in an intentional reflective process going through my year, during the month of December.
To me, reflection is so important if you want to consider how you can become a better version of yourself, as well as acknoweldging how you did live a life of satisfaction.
I utilize my journals, photo gallery, and current vision board to assess what my year has been like. Merely going thru my journals, and re-reading my expressions is a great time machine for me. As a person who takes a lot pictures of my day to day, going back thru my photos allows me to reconnect with emotions and experiences that come along with each still shot. Lastly, every year, I create a visualization tool to set goals for the year. Its not meant to add pressure, but to keep my mind and intentions set on moving towards something. Eveything doesn't always get "checked off" so to speak, but its great to look at what did, whats in the pipeline, and whether anything remaining, would be important enough to shoot for the next year.
Below are examples of areas I make sure to reflect on each December:
-I take note of any positive experiences such as events attended, goals checked off, fears overcome, and strides made.
- I reflect on times of trial that were the catalyst of any type of compromise to my wellness and self love practice.
-I take note of goals written down that I didn't necessarily complete and assess the reasoning.
- I examine my major realtionships, taking note of which got stronger, weaker and which ones I may need to naturally let go of; as well as the reasoing behind each category.
- I take note of accomplishments that are aligned with my 5 Commandments of Self Love: honor Thyself, honor thy mind, honor thy body, honor thy spirit and forgiveness.
- I take note of new or re-confirmed insights about my character, motivations and limiting thinking
When it comes to "how I reflect", my main tool I use is a journal. I try to capture my emotions and thoughts as often as possible via written word. Its cathartic, and lays out everything plain for you to re-read. I also make sure to keep my journals, so that at any time of reflection, I can go back.
I know some people believe that "bringing up" or thinking about your past, gets in the way of you living in the future but I disagree. The field of History exists for a reason. To learn about a person, place or things, it i rather important to take note of its history. Its the same for ourselves and our lives. Reflection is a tool for growth and transformation.
There is a difference of using reflection as a tool of growth as opposed to an excuse to ruminate in an old narrative, The past matters. We are a collection of our experiences. We are shaped, not defined, by our experiences. Reflect to determine what you need to walk away with vs. what you need to walk away from. Refoect to assess how you've grown and how you've stumbled. Reflect to take gratitude with you into one more day.