Reflection is a powerful but vastly under utilised tool that we can use to solve problems and achieve the outcomes we seek.
Whether you run your own business or are an employee, the pace of life can be frenetic. Even if you love what you do, there never seems enough time to do everything that is needed!
This is why the Festive Season is a great time to slow down and reflect.
Why Reflection is Important!
When we are rushing around, striving to meet deadlines it is hard to take the time out – to pause and reflect on our business and lives in general.
For most of the year we operate in “solution” mode. Often, we are reactive and buffered by events as they occur in our business or lives. Sometimes things work, on other occasions they fall apart.
We rise to the challenge. Pursue our targets. See a problem and find a solution!
The pace of life means we rarely find time to slow down and reflect on what is working, changes that may be needed, and to explore potential solutions.
The busyness of our lives impedes creativity and stops us reaching that space where insights occur. Where solutions and the true gold can be found!
Working on the Problem Isn’t Reflection!
Reflection isn’t about working on a problem or undertaking analysis. This is great to define a problem and gather information – but it is not where insights or breakthroughs occur!
In fact, the more we “work” on a problem – the further away from a solution we seem to be.
Analysis has its role, but it isn’t reflection!
What is Reflection?
Reflection is about slowing down. Allowing thoughts to drift through your mind, like clouds in the sky.
It is about being guided by your feelings, your intuition. What feels right.
It is not about the “how” – it is about the what. You can address the how when you get back to work
Where to Reflect
Everyone is different. Some people can just find a quiet space and reflect. For some it will be whilst walking in the bush, a garden or at the beach.
Others it will be sitting at a café watching the passing parade or doing something enjoyable (Einstein liked to paint or play the piano)
It is what works for you!
Start With What’s Working!
Mindset plays a critical role when it comes to reflection. So rather than focusing on what you want to change, slow down and first reflect on what is working in your life or business.
While we all have things that we want to achieve or change – we also have much to be grateful for in our lives. Both large and small.
Too often we don’t take the time to acknowledge this – or if we do it is diminished by – Yes but, I still want to…….. or Yes but, I am not happy about…….
Reflecting on what’s working – with a sense of gratitude will put you in a great place to find the solutions you are seeking
Look for the Feeling!
Our logical part of the brain is great for analysis – but it can get in the way of insights and solutions.
The key when reflecting is to go with the feeling. If it feels right it is invariably right. Even if the “how” isn’t yet apparent.
Occasionally, an idea or solution will pop into our mind fully formed – but this is the exception rather than the rule.
More often we have a sense of what needs to be done – but without all the details. That is okay. In fact, it is how reflection works!
Once you have planted the seed, the idea, the how will evolve – often when you are doing something completely different!
Reflection is a powerful tool that sets human beings apart – it is simple and powerful. But in the hectic world we live, it is vastly under-utilised.
Reflection is also more something you experience – than do!
At worst if you take time out to reflect as we suggest, you will slow down and feel better about your life!
You are more likely to take the first steps towards the outcomes you seek!