Scott’s Thoughts: In Reflection

“We look at the present through a rear-view mirror. We march backwards into the future.”

Marshall McLuhan, Canadian professor and media theorist

Side view mirror on Golden Gate BridgeHave you spent time yet this January looking back on 2017? Have you taken stock of where things went well and when they went off the rails? If not, don’t neglect to reflect on your experiences in 2017. According to a recent Harvard Business School study, reflection is essential to the learning process.

Reflection is a tool which helps us see our blindspots and reveals patterns of behavior we miss in the moment. Without it, we charge blindly on, missing crucial opportunities to self-correct or gain deeper insight into our motives and desires.

Reflection isn’t just a tool for your own “end of year review.” Putting yourself under the microscope for a few minutes every day can yield significant benefits. Entrepreneur Joris Toonders encourages everyone to ask themselves four questions every day. They break down this way:

In the morning:
1. What are my goals today?
2. What are my challenges today?

In the evening:
3. Have I reached my goals for the day?
4. What have I learned today?

Journaling on this topic–even if it’s a private video diary you shoot of yourself with your phone–can engage your mind with productive reflection. The record itself is great to look back on to remind yourself of goals, challenges, and all that you learn along the way. This, in turn, can drive you towards a more productive and more satisfying 2018.

Don’t neglect to reflect!

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