Taking Time to Reflect


There are magical times of the day when our lake transforms into a looking glass. A mirror image of clouds, sky, and trees is painted on the silky smooth water, doubling the ethereal beauty. Dawn and dusk are the enchanted hours, when all of nature whispers, “It’s time for reflection.”

Have you ever reached the end of a week, a month, or a year, and wondered where the days went? They all run together, and experiences and lessons from one day are smothered by the next.

We need time for reflection.

When my children were young, I asked them nearly every evening the best and worst thing about their day. It was a way to stay close to them, but I also hoped it helped them reflect on their day, celebrate the good, and grow from the challenges.

As a literature teacher, I discovered my students needed encouragement to process what they read. Discussion and reflection allowed them to personally connect with a story or poem and apply the theme to their own lives.

I must admit, my own reflection time is often in front of a mirror where I scrutinize superficial bits I fully know don’t define my worth. That’s not the kind of self-reflection we need. We learned that cautionary tale from Narcissus, who stared at his own reflection until he withered away.

Self-reflection refers to serious thought about our character, actions, and motives. The beginning or end of the day seems the best time for clear reflection. You may prefer to journal, walk, pray, or simply ponder.

I would not be so bold as to tell you what questions you should ask in daily self-reflection, but I will share mine as a springboard for your own ~

  1. What are my three core values? (Yes, this requires intense contemplation.)
  2. Today, how well did my thoughts, words, actions, and interactions align with my core values?
  3. Tomorrow, how can I better live in alignment with my core values?

“Self-reflection is the school of wisdom.” ~17th century writer Baltasar Gracian


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