3 powerful reasons to reflect, and how to do it


Time to take a moment

It’s fast approaching the festive season and like most people you’re diligently head down focussed on putting your pressing workload to bed. When you potentially bust yourself to achieve this, you’ll feel justified to drop things and fall in a hole before the big guy in red comes.

Unfortunately, this isn’t a healthy approach that will safeguard your wellbeing or work-life satisfaction levels at all. 

Bryant and Veroff (2007) define savouring as attending, appreciating, and enhancing positive experiences that occur in one’s life.

What if you could maintain the energy levels and focus to finalise your to-dos for the year and enter the festive season already rejuvenated? Reflecting on (savouring) the positive things that you and your team have achieved in 2022, the first year mostly uninterrupted by Covid, can make this happen.

Where do you start?

Give yourself permission, and find a safe space on your own where you can reflect on the past year.

Reflecting outdoors, or in an open space, has been scientifically proven (‘The Cathedral Effect’) to be more effective.

If you’re stuck, try visualising exactly where you were 12 months ago (professionally/personally/as a business owner), and ponder the following 5 questions.

More great questions here to assist you to reflect.

Reflection Questions

3 great reasons to reflect

1. It gives you the space for insights and great ideas

It’s so easy to get caught in the trap of concern where you are always trying to problem solve and move forward. You will discover that you have experienced (positive or challenging) times throughout the year that have helped you grow as a person, both professionally and personally. 

2. It makes you happier

Positive emotions are generated when you reflect on the things you did or went well, and your successes. Reflecting allows you to realise how much you’ve achieved professionally and personally this year, the good things you’ve done in your life, and just how far you’ve come.

3. It gives you perspective. 

Often, at this time of year, we are caught up in the busy-ness of our daily lives. This can overwhelm us sometimes and negatively distort our perceptions. But if we take a minute to step back to reflect with self-compassion, and acknowledge the cool stuff we achieved during the year, it can calm us down and lower our stress levels. We gain a healthier perspective, and that’s a very healthy thing.

The power of Daily Reflection

If you find this yearly reflection beneficial, maybe see how you go doing a little daily reflection next year.

Here are some suggestions to support you to do that:

1. Start a one-sentence journal

This is a habit you’ll love and a little trick from Gretchen Rubin of ‘The Happiness Project’. She suggests if you’ve tried and failed at journaling in the past that you try the one-sentence journal. The best thing is when you get to look back on a year’s worth of entries.

2. Reflect at the same time, every day 

However you decide to reflect, take a minute or two at the end of every day to do it. Whether you write it down or not, make daily reflection a habit – no exceptions!! Create a trigger (such as, “when I walk the dog”), this will help establish the habit.

3. Exercise – an ideal time to reflect

If you don’t run or have some other form of daily exercise, consider just taking a walk and using that time for reflection. Try asking yourself a couple of the questions previously discussed. From your daily interactions, ask: what did I do well? What could I improve on? and what did I achieve today?

5. Share your reflections

This isn’t for everyone but if you post your reflections on a blog, or a forum you belong to, or just on a LiveJournal account viewable to friends … you’re holding yourself accountable to a group of people. Your reflections are shared with others, and once people start to read them and expect them, you’ll feel comfortable to keep it up.

Your mental fitness journey

We wish you every success and enjoyment from using these tools for reflection. These and so many other strategies can be used to help positively self-regulate your thinking and actions.

Keen to ramp up your mental fitness levels?

Contact us for an introduction or join our Get Mentally Fit community by joining our mailing list on the footer below.

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