Sometimes, you can be under too much pressure due to professional and personal responsibilities. In such situations, it is important that you pause for some time and carefully analyze the issues that trouble us. If you do not self-reflect, you will blindly keep moving ahead, increasingly pushing yourself into an unhappy, stressful, and frustrating life.
“We keep running on the treadmill of life thinking we don’t have time to waste. So we keep moving in order to keep up. But too often, we just crash and burn. That’s because the only way to keep up with the pace of life is to STOP. To hop off the treadmill. To reflect on what’s working and what’s not. To identify what to keep and what needs to change,” according to Life Hack. So how do we self-reflect? Here are some tips to get you started.
Measure up to standards
There will be occasions when you have to make a decision regarding something important and are unsure exactly how to make that decision. The longer you think about it, the more difficult it might become to choose a path. What you need to do is to pause and self-reflect on what values you need to measure up to so that you can make a choice that aligns with such values. These values can be personal standards, professional standards, or standards that people you look up to follow.
For instance, say you have to decide on whether to lay off employees to save some money due to low sales during the pandemic. These employees might have been working for you for a long time. As such, you could feel conflicted as to what to do. If you continue paying salaries, your business might end up losing money. But if you terminate them from employment, these people and their families will have to suffer. To choose from either of the two options, you need to reflect on what values you want to uphold — a business that squarely focuses on profits or a business that makes certain sacrifices to make sure that its employees are taken care of to the best extent possible.
Self-reflection can sometimes lead you to nowhere. You might get lost in some complex choices and be unable to make sense of them. What you need to do is to have a crystal clear understanding of the subject. And the best way to do so is to write down everything you are thinking. Prepare a few flowcharts to create a cause-effect link of your thoughts, a pros and cons analysis to determine which choices will benefit or harm you to what extent, and so on. Once you finish writing out your thoughts in such a manner, it will become easier to understand the core issue that you are troubled with and how to solve it.
Listen to others
Self-reflection is about thinking on your own. But what do you do when this does not help? You may need to think in a different way. A good solution would be to listen to the opinions of colleagues and peers whom you respect. They can give you a fresh perspective on the topic troubling your mind. And when you gather enough opinions, you can once again self-reflect on the issues, this time comparing the viewpoints of your peers against yours. It is possible that you might find fault with your line of thinking through this exercise. If so, correct your thinking process and you might potentially resolve the problem troubling your mind.