3 reasons why each of us should take the time out for personal reflection

All of us are always so busy busy busy with our schedules jam-packed full from back to back. (At least we think we are and that’s what we tell others anyway) We are constantly rushing to and fro from one schedule to the next, trying to make it in time for the next appointment. Much too often, I find myself guilty of the fact that I do things mindlessly without taking the time out to stop and reflect. I don’t ask myself often enough “Why am I doing this? What is my purpose? What are its benefits? Will it help me achieve my goal or bring me closer to it in any way?” I’m not trying to say that we should be overly focused just on doing things that benefit us. No way! That’s not the right attitude.

Here are 3 reasons why I think all of us could benefit by taking time out for personal reflection.

  1. You achieve things at a higher standard and become more productive. When you keep thinking through and are constantly reminded about something many times, the reason why you started something in the first place gets reinforced. The concept gets drilled into your head and as such, you will definitely become more familiar with the intricate ins and outs of the process, and may even find yourself getting more passionate about what you’re doing! I have also noticed that when I ask myself these questions and am constantly questioning my schedule and mindset, this personal reflection time often aids me greatly in making conscious decisions that better help me achieve what I originally set out to do. Without this, I tend to stray from my original intention, end up forgetting the main reason and lose the fiery passion that got me started in the first place! There are so many distractions in today’s day and age, and I for one, get side-tracked very easily. By reflecting more, we are likely to make mental test-runs of the process, which will help identify potential mistakes, enabling us to do what we can to prevent or reduce the likelihood of a mishap. We will also not be as rash and thus make lesser careless mistakes.
  2. You make a better impression on others. We may not always notice it, but people can gauge a person’s level of maturity and their character solely based off what they say, which reveals their train-of-thought. Many should be able to answer these questions following a short 20-30 minute conversation with somebody. It would be good to ask yourself these questions too. Are they someone who thinks and reflects? Are they an organised person who plans for the future and knows what they are doing in life, or just fumbling around and hoping to strike gold someday? Are they somebody who says things just because it happened to pop into their mind at that moment/they heard it somewhere, or are they actually able to substantiate it with facts and reliable evidence? Of course such questions cannot be answered for sure with 100% certainty because getting to know a person well takes time. But what i’m trying to say is that just with a short conversation, we reveal much more than we think we do and say, and if we’re not careful, may not reflect well on us.
  • You worry way less because you understand what is going on and feel more at peace. By understanding what is going on and the things happening around us, we are able to have somewhat of an expectation of things and what could happen. This helps us feel more in “control” of our lives. What about stress levels? Isn’t that something all of us could always do with way less?? Constantly stressing and preoccupying your mind, bombarding yourself about deadlines, future plans and aspirations, worrying about things that may or may not even happen etc. I’m sure we all could take a break from such. When you stress and worry less, there are significant health benefits to it! Check out this article on how stress and worry affects our health! It provides really good scientific information and tips on how to handle and manage stress that may seem to have a vice-like grip over our lives. Notice how one of the tips is to be “Conscious of our worries” and you might want to set aside 15 minutes of your time to do what you want to worry and think about during that period, but after that, drop and leave it when the time is up. (https://www.webmd.com/balance/how-worrying-affects-your-body)

Overall, I strongly recommend you guys to try and put a conscious effort into taking time out for personal reflection. I’m sure you’ll find it surprisingly refreshing and notice many other benefits I may have missed out on! Let me know what you think 🙂

As always, thanks for reading guys!

Paul Chong