What happened when I started reflecting, everyday
You may do it without knowing it, it’s just another name for it, it’s just another name for thinking about something or looking at something from different angles. I’m talking about reflection and reflecting upon something.
I’ve always been a person with thoughts all over the place, when I was young I had short attention span and hard to sit still for more than 30 minutes. As I grew older my attention span got longer and I could sit still for more than 30 minutes, but one thing stuck with me — the thoughts that were everywhere all the time. This haven’t been problem, although it feels good to know what I feel and why. I’ve gone to school for 16 years, read different courses within media science, gone to university, done sports, have different roles in companies, worked with telemarketing, worked as digital producer. During these different times in my life I had my thoughts all over the place, thinking a lot on: Is this the right place for me? How did I do at work today, should I do something else etcetera etcetera. And now you thinking, but you’re reflecting!! Yes, I were reflecting but what has changed?
In 2013 something happened, someone or someones introduced me about a tool, a tool they called Reflecting. With this tool you could know what you’d done throughout a work day, how it felt for you and what you could have done better in order to feel even better with your day, powerful right? Well, for me it was a way of collecting all of my thoughts into three simple sentences and then save these, learn from them and go back to them at any time. I started doing this day out and day in but nothing really happened. I reflected upon my days and then left and did other stuff. Early in 2014 I started a new work (my current) and this is where the magic of reflection began.
This was quite a new role for me within a company. All of my previous knowledge from educations, internships and previous work where put together in one single title but hundreds of different obligations — like work is right. So my thoughts were going all over the place from day one, did I do the right thing, who did this other thing, who the heck is Michael and what’s his role within the company and why should I talk to him, wtf is car rental really (I work within the car rental business, or travel business if you want) and this is where reflection really came in handy. I asked one my friends (who where aspiring to be a coach) to help me get started and we found a methodology that I could work with in order to start reflecting at the end of everyday. Here’s the question we came up with that worked for me:
- With bullets answer in short what you’ve done today
This can seem easy but you’ll be surprised, it isn’t that simple to remember an eight hour work day because you do so much and work with many different tasks due a day(hopefully). You start working, then you have to speak to two persons, you go into a meeting, you go back and continue working, you have lunch, you continue working, someone interrupts you, you get a phone call, you continue working and lastly you check your email and then ends the work day — how will you ever know what you’ve accomplished? For me it was to basically take 10 minutes before I left work in the evening and answer the question above — what have I done today?
I’ve done this for more than a year now more or less and it’s really fullfilling to know what you’ve done and also accomplished from day to day. I plan my week and days by writing down I need to do in order to accomplish something, but that doesn’t matter at all if you in the end don’t accomplish it. You may know that you haven’t done the things you planned to do, that’s fine but the really interesting stories and thoughts rises when you start asking yourself Why you didn’t accomplished what you intended and how you could work in order to accomplish them the next day. By reflecting you reveal for yourself that Why and if you know the Why of something you can change it (if you want). By reflecting everyday I know Why I did something and Why it happened, so I can answer the follow up questions from the bullet above which are:
- How did that make you feel?
- Why did that make you feel that way?
- What can/will you do in order to keep feeling that way or change?
By asking myself these questions I’ve optimized my way of working more than ten times in order for me to feel better of what I do everyday (at work) and know that the things I’ve done were the right things that day, week, month and year. By simply reflect for ten minutes before you leave work and bullet down your achievements you could feel proud of yourself and your accomplishments and who doesn’t want to have those feelings? And simply by reflecting upon all of these questions I’ve optimized my way of working and have become more satisfied with my work, my style of working, better at planning what to do and in the end more effective — do more of the right tasks in the same time, and time is money right? (No, time is much more valuable than money) and happy — by simply have my thoughts where I want them.
Have a great one!
If you want to know more about my reflecting techniques and what I do with the information please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.