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It’s easy to welcome complacency into your life. After all, it is a level of satisfaction. However, content you appear to be, devoid of self-reflection, your sense of serenity may all be a façade. Without first examining and understanding your thoughts, feelings, and actions, it is impossible to be true to yourself and others. Gazing inward will lead to growth as a human being and bring about harmony and happiness. How does this process begin? It starts with learning the benefits of introspection and how to incorporate it into your daily routine.
The first benefit of self-reflection is boosting emotional intelligence. Looking inward helps build self-awareness and self-regulation, which are necessary for emotional intelligence. Self-awareness provides you the capacity to recognize your emotions, strengths, vulnerabilities, morals, goals and aspirations and their impact on those around you. Self-regulation involves the capability to manage or redirect your troublesome feelings and impulses and adapt to varying circumstances. Building these skills will improve both your personal and professional roles.
Acting with honor, the second benefit, is often difficult to do, especially during stressful phases of life. However, once you become certain of your core values, you will strengthen your integrity and in turn make better choices. Evaluating decisions and actions using your core values as a guide will assist in your endeavor of acting with honor.
The third benefit of self-reflection is increasing one’s confidence, which can often be a daunting task. However, with the complexity of life, confidence is crucial. With introspection, this trait will become stronger and will help you navigate the chaos, communicate effectively and make better decisions. As one’s confidence builds the gaps in the areas of weakness will close.
Looking inward, however beneficial, is only truly valuable when the process is a constant element in your daily routine. Practicing self-reflection exercises daily, although challenging at first, will become easier over time with consistent practice. It is recommended that you record your thoughts, observations, and activities in a journal each day. Picking a specific small, manageable goal will help keep you from being overwhelmed with the process. Be certain it is a goal you can track or monitor, such as improving your time management skills. At the end of each day ask yourself some questions for instance:
After answering these questions, do not worry if you believe you made mistakes along the way to meeting your goal. The importance of self-reflection is not finding faults within oneself but as a journey to self-awareness. Additional questions that will help you progress toward your goal may include:
While moving on this path, there are a few things one should remember:
The outcome of this process is not measured in time, but in the positive changes one makes. There is no rush, as it is a journey, a process that will challenge you along the way.