“The truth is that many of us are so busy trying to move forward with our lives that we rarely take a moment to slow down and be at one with our thoughts.”Catherine beard, The blissful mind
Self-reflection is the process of bringing your attention to what’s happening in your life in a mindful and open-minded way. There are many ways to practice self-reflection, however, journaling and therapy have been the most effective way for me to process my thoughts and feelings. Slow down, be still, and give yourself grace on the journey.
Today, I wanted to share a few things I have learned over the past few months that have been helpful in providing me with a greater sense of peace and clarity.
1. You have permission to change your mind.
If something no longer serves the purpose it originally intended — whether it be a job, relationship, or career path — you are allowed to pivot. Your are not wishy washy if you change your mind rather you are simply human. Self-reflection allows us to slow down and focus on not only what is happening around us but within us. People grow and change. Acknowledge it, breathe through it; the tides of change will pass. If something is no longer in alignment with where you are in life. You can bow out gracefully. Let it go. Be free. Change should not be feared and ultimately has the ability to mold us in the best of ways.
2. Live with intentionality daily.
Are you making decisions or are you allowing life to make decisions for you? You do not have to wait to begin living life fully and abundantly. Earlier this year, my father passed away at the age of 56 from a heart attack. I often hear people say they cannot wait for retirement so they can “live”, “have fun”, or “be stress free”. My dad worked for the same company for over 25 years and lived only 9 months after retirement. He strived to live life every day with intentionality; his time just ended before I was ready. I no longer wait when it comes to living my life fully. There will never be another day like the present so consider each day an opportunity to begin anew. It took me 10 years to muster up the courage to create this blog but I finally took the leap. Do not put limits on yourself. Your gifts and talents cannot wait. That being said, take the trip, make the move, do the thing. I would rather try and fail than wrestle with the “what if”.
3. Honor your boundaries.
For me, honoring my boundaries looks like saying no to opportunities when I no longer have the energy to give. It means prioritizing my physical and mental health. It means letting loved ones know when I have reached my emotional capacity. It means managing my anxiety by taking time for deep breaths and remaining hydrated. Just because you can endure things, does not mean you should. In this technological world, we are connected to people like never before. I honor my boundaries by protecting my time— just because I am available does not mean you have access to me. My therapist recently said, “you are allowed to take a break from solving other people’s problems. You can can focus on yourself and still feel loved.” Rest friends. There is no award for overworked person of the year. Our bodies need to recharge just as much as our smart phones. Slow down. Be still. Reflect.