Hello and welcome to the last edition of my mindfulness blog in this series. In this series we have looked at mindfulness in general, mindfulness and productivity, mindfulness and time off and mindfulness in terms of being present with friends and family. In this final blog today, we are going to learn how reflection can help us.

What is reflection?
Reflection is a very useful tool for life. It allows us to learn from our present and past. Being reflective helps us understand what we might need to improve on and how we can improve on it. In essence, reflection is intertwined with mindfulness.

Why I want you to be reflective?
I genuinely want to empower people to take ownership over their health and wellness. And I genuinely believe that mindfulness has enabled me to live a happier life. Why wouldn’t I want to share that with you?

During our lives we all get feedback from other people as to what we should and shouldn’t be doing. We can therefore become quite passive at decision-making. I’m not saying that others opinions are right or wrong, but I believe that reflection allows us to become self-empowered and more confident in making decisions for ourselves. When we know that we are making decisions for ourselves, we know that we are asserting control over our own lives.

How to be reflective:
There are various reflective models online but I like to use Gibbs reflective cycle. You can choose to be reflective over any aspect in your life. For instance, if you had an argument with your partner, you might want to do some reflection in terms of what went wrong and how you can go about improving this for the future. If something positive happened in your life you might want to reflect on what went right and how you can use these tools again for the future. If you want to improve on your mindfulness skills, you might want to reflect on that! There is no right or wrong answer with the reflection, rather a trust of your intuition.

So with Gibbs’ model, you normally write a description of what happened. Kind of like a brain dump e.g. I notice that when I’m sad, I comfort eat which makes me feel uncomfortable….

You then write about how this situation makes you feel e.g. I get frustrated which makes me angry leading to sadness leading to more comfort eating…

You then move on to analyse and evaluate the situation. This is looking at why you think the situation unfolded as it did e.g. I notice I get sad every time John leaves for university. I feel like a spare part and don’t know what to do with myself…

You then conclude and move to an action plan – you self-empower yourself because you’ve worked out why a situation has made you feel a certain way e.g. instead of going to the fridge every time John goes to university, I’m going to call my friends to see whether they’d like to hang out…

Try it. Reflection can be quite challenging yet rewarding at the same time. Personal development is the key to growth. This technique will help you to become more mindful and present in all that you do.

I truly hope you’ve enjoyed your mindfulness journey and I cannot wait to introduce you to our new topic next week!

Until next time,

R

(p.s. make sure you’re all caught with – Charlie’s blog it’s fascinating!)

(p.p.s. are you a U.K. registered HCPC Health Professional? If so, sign up to You Own It to empower your community!)