Personal Development: Why Self reflection is so Important
Self reflection is the ability of a person to exercise self-examination and to attempt to learn more about his fundamental nature and essence. Personal development and self-reflection are two of the keys to your emotional well-being. Self-reflection is an essential part of personality development. As you learn to reflect on the things and situations you start to grow in life.
“Mistakes increase your experience and experience decreases your mistakes. If you learn from your mistakes then others learn from your SUCCESS”. Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
The Importance of Self reflection:
Practicing self reflection is an important part of personal development. In addition, research shows that experience is one of the best things to grow in life.
In fact, mistakes are committed by all of us however learning from mistakes is an ability that few of us can get. The fact is that experience can have different consequences for each person: not everyone will perceive the facts in the same way. Without an active thought process about what we live or without questioning the meaning of those experiences, learning, in many cases, will not occur. In other words, what takes us from simple experience to learning is self-reflection.
Self reflection will allow us to learn more deeply by seeing situations from different perspectives and by favoring challenging questions that will lead us to question our own beliefs about the world. If the reflection is accurate, it will help us to continue our path in personal development.
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. Gratitude can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.” Melody Beattie
Self-Reflection and Emotions: Walking Towards Well-being
The development of self-control refers to an improvement in impulse management, emotional self-regulation, self-awareness, planning, and social adaptation, which are absolutely essential for human well-being and are fully consistent with learning meaningful experiences for professional and personal life. Obtaining good self-control requires a higher level of internal reflection, so the connection between self-reflection and well-being seems apparent.
Here the word well-being refers to “being in the place I want to be”, and implies achieving balance and harmony in our daily life; in the relationship with ourselves and in the interaction with others. Moreover, personal and social well-being is not a constant rather it is a dynamic component, which is built throughout life and can change at any time.
Furthermore, well-being can become a relatively stable characteristic if we succeed to attain a good relationship with ourselves. It is beneficial for both personal lives and for dealing with other human beings. By achieving an acceptable level of well-being, we will be able to handle various experiences that are presented to us throughout our day-to-day. That’s what personal development and self-reflection are all about.
Personal Development and Self-reflection: Interest and Pain
Personal development and self-reflection bring us to a level where we love to face the situations and problems of our daily life. To reach this level it will be necessary to take risks, assume a position or a certain point of view and decide the best choice. In order to reach a stable level in life, we will have to ask ourselves the question from time to time: “Is this where I wanted to be?”
This question will allow us to know if we really are in the place we want to be (our job, our partner, our standard, etc.). If the answer is yes, we will be in a state of satisfaction and everything will seem to go in harmony where we can ignore many hardships of our lives. And if the answer is no, then we will be in a state of embarrassment and discomfiture. Here we will only have a choice to get back to comfort and happiness which is self-reflection: the way towards personal development.
Therefore, the path of personal development is just like the path to personal well-being, to the place where I want to be, but this does not mean that we are constantly reflecting.
Mindfulness requires self-reflection and emotional awareness, to later accept ourselves as what we are. In addition, the present will also tell us if we are comfortable or not, since there are two paths that will lead us to self-reflection: These are curiosity and pain.
The Problems of Avoiding Reflection:
Reflection is necessary at every change in life. Living continuously away from the present, whether in the past, or in the future, or in the excessive self-demands that we set for ourselves, does not tend to full self-knowledge, but leads to an unbalanced and not very objective image of ourselves. This generates low self-esteem, feelings of discomfort, feelings of inadequacy, social withdrawal, little assertiveness, continues stress and anxiety, psychological problems and deprived emotional well-being.
Although the reflection towards personal development might seem easy at first glance, there are many people who turn to coach professionals to be able to unblock themselves in the long run. The coach, as personal development, gets the client to reflect through disciplined questions, which allow a client to grow as a developed person. The coach helps to connect with feelings and emotions emotionally: detachment plays a determining role when it comes to growing as individuals.
In fact, avoiding self-reflection is common. When it is curiosity that leads us to reflect and we avoid it, rigidity appears. If we consider that there are other ways of doing things, but we are afraid of that possibility, we will surely never leave our comfort zone. On the contrary, if it is the pain that leads us to reflect, but we do not attack that detachment, sadness will surely appear. If this state continues in the long run of life, sadness will convert into depression and we will continue to think that the past was always better.
The 5 Reasons to Self-Reflection:
Self-Reflection is vital in many different perspectives of a persons’ life. Because we live in a society, that has endured insightful changes in the past few decades. It is not easy to look within when society wants us to constantly look outside, to be more successful, to compare ourselves, etc. In the midst of so much information (infobesity or Information overload), we stick to old certainties to feel safe, unable to describe reality as it is.
Thus, we deny our emotions and live in a mindless psychic-emotional state. Our courage only seems to have value in the approval of others to our own wishes. In order not to spare, you need to have designed clothes, a beautiful girl as your life partner, a successful profession, a good position in your job, a nice looking car, etc… building a path of suffering, away from a true sense of personal development and emotional well-being.
Fortunately, we have the reflective ability to detach ourselves from certainties, connect with ourselves, and self-reflect. In the personal dimension, our arguments and actions are always guided by our emotions, so it is important to understand and accept them. We do not know what will happen in the future, but whatever happens will be different if it happens from the emotion of expectation, superficiality, and hypocrisy, or if it happens from the emotion of self-respect, gratitude, self-acceptance, trust, and tenderness.
At the end of the article, we have 5 fundamental things for self reflection. Here are the five reasons for self-reflection that will lead you on the path of self-reflection and personal development:
- Helps you learn from mistakes
- Helps you have good ideas
- Makes you happier
- Helps you relate to others
- Helps you see your perspective on things
Recommended books for Self-reflection:
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
- Self-aware: A Guide for Success in Work and Life by Robert S Pasick
- The Power of Now Journal (El Poder del Ahora) by Eckhart Tolle
- Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
- Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman
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