Key Point: Taking a meaningful pause to reflect and digest is good for our personal development system. And whether we like it or not, the end of the calendar year is a natural “bench” along our personal journey; a metaphorical place to sit, rest, and gather ourselves before continuing.
If we look at ourselves as a whole and connected “system,” the following reflection on 2015 may be helpful.
- In what ways did you advance yourself intellectually, emotionally, physically, financially and/or spiritually? How did you do that?
- What do you feel good about in building relationships with others? What relationships grew stronger? What new or renewed relationships did you develop? How did you do that?
- Overall, what personal results or outcomes where you happiest about in 2015?
- What were your biggest personal disappointments in 2015?? What did you really learn from these?
Reflection Checklist. The following may prompt your memory and assist you in your summary above:
. What were one or two of the most enjoyable and meaningful discussions you had? With who? Where?
. Who do you love to be around? How does their positive energy add to you?
. What did you read or watch that made you really think? Question some of your views or assumptions?
. What picture/image did you see that left a memorable impression? What did you feel?
. Was there a morning when you woke up feeling totally rested and peaceful? Why? What happened the evening before?
. What are a few small things you did that made you feel good about who you are and what you believe?
. What projects did you complete that gave you a sense of accomplishment? When did you do your best work?
. What’s one new skill or insight you added to yourself? How have you applied it?
. What physical activity did you do that left you physically spent and “achy good?”
. What was a time when you lost yourself in doing or creating something?
. What discussion or words exchanged made you feel miserable? When? With who? Why?
. When did you look in the mirror and feel frustrated, perhaps disgusted ? Why?
. What day did you wake up and think, “Geez… Not again. Will I ever learn?”
. What did you do that was “just putting in time;” not your best contribution? Why?
. Who around you is mostly negative and frankly sucks the life out of you? Why do you spend time with them?
. When did you get physically sick? What happened?
Would you amend your answers to the first 4 questions above after reflecting on the checklist?
- Give yourself some meaningful quiet, self-reflective time to think and respond in a written way to the above. Journal it. You owe it to yourself and others.
- Summarize your insights into a few actionable themes. In the spirit of self-accountability, ask yourself: “What will I CHOOSE to do about this? When?” (Small forward steps usually work the best). You CAN take some personal action on anything… (i.e. start doing, stop doing, do more of, less of).
- While we can always advance there are things to be grateful for regardless of our circumstances. Conclude your self-reflection with as many statements as you can to the following phrase:
” I am grateful for…”
Grateful for 2015 in The Triangle,
One Millennial View: As a Millennial, actually sitting down and voluntarily completing the checklist above in a written format seems like it would take FOREVER. Seriously. But, you know what? Maybe a long, slow, arduous checklist (the kind that causes you to literally hear the seconds tick by) isn’t only a good idea, but a necessary time out. Weeks, months and years can start to fly by, and if I don’t stop and reflect once in a while, pretty soon I’ll blink and be too old to even write this segment.
Edited and published by Garrett Rubis