Episode 22 – Reflecting Techniques

In a fast paced world, it’s hard to take a few moments to reflect. But, reflection may be exactly what is needed to improve your work and avoid repeating the same behaviors and habits that have gotten you the results you don’t want. Tune in to listen to reflection techniques that can help you become your most powerful teacher in the quest to offer up your best work.

Episode 22 – Show Notes

  • Journals
  • Thought Downloads + Mind Framework
  • Thought Downloads + Lessons Learned Reflection
  • Notebook Prayers/Reflections

Episode 22 – Show Script

This is Rebecca Clark. Episode 22 Reflecting on the reflections This’ll Podcast is for anyone that knows they haven’t yet found and offered up their best work but are compelled to seek it out and do it. Are you ready to move your desk flow, my friends today we’re going to talk about reflecting upon our reflections, and that might not sound like an interesting topic to some of you. But stick with me here for a few minutes because I think there could be some nuggets that would provide value for you, especially if you are compelled to do your best work and thio keep moving your desk.

I started writing in a journal when I was about nine years old, and I’m very lucky, I think, because my parents had a couple come to our home and talk to us about the importance of writing about our lives. And at the end of that experience, my parents pulled out a small stack of books. I call them a small stack of books because only one of them officially said journal on it, and it was black with white pages that were lined and it had a red ribbon for a bookmark, and at first glance, that was the journal I wanted.

And I think that’s the journal that my sister’s wanted as well. And the other books were empty books my parents had found in their belongings that they were going to count as journals and one was a small ledger and one was a very tall, long ledger. This thing was pretty much the size of legal paper. If you think about that size and I’ll try to take a picture and put it in the notes because I ended up sacrificing the journal, I wanted and chose the very unique tall ledger to be my first journal.

And I will tell you it is the coolest journal in the world because I decorated it with marker Inside. I put the stickers that were popular back in the day, and there I had postcards from trips. I have different weeks where I kept track of the weather. I don’t know if I did that on my own or for school, but I did it. And so I should put some screen shots for you because I just love opening up that journal. It’s very cool. All the journals after that are not so cool.

You know, they’re really journals. And I just wrote about the woes and the experiences of childhood until I hit about 22 or 23. And that’s where I switched to typing in the computer. And then in the last few years I had this strategy where typing in the old journals and the computer. Then I was like, You know what? Wait a second, let me look at this differently. And now I’m not doing that. There’s no reason to type thes. At some point, I may even throw them away because I am taking a totally different approach, and I’m actually using my own.

Start with a chart model that you’ll soon see a website for. And I am approaching my life story from a chart model because it’s given me a great way to frame how I look at my life. And it’s an easier way to start collecting the memories and experiences that are important, and later I will go pull specific examples from journals, and I start this off by talking about journals because that is one of the ways that we can reflect on the experiences in our lives, and it kind of helps us get it out of our mind whether we’re typing it or writing it, and in a way helps us look at our own thoughts if we bother to look back at them.

And I have been reading a lot of these journals over the last couple of years, and I was really surprised a few months ago when I took some time one day to read some things and realized something that I hadn’t realized before. And that is that I am someone that meets about 80% of the yearly goals I make for myself. But what was fascinating is to see that every year there’s about 20% of the goals that I do not meet or 15% or whatever percentage it is, and it’s the same goals.

So it’s the goals, you know, to get healthy or to lose weight. It’s the goal to become an entrepreneur like you can see this pattern as you look back over my charts over the years because I use a chart fiercely coals as well. Ah, which will be a different start with a chart to share with you But I use this chart and I looked back and all the charts and like, you’ve got to be kidding me. It’s that same percentage. That doesn’t change, and that’s because I think those air very personal and very hard to work on.

I find a lot of other goals easier to accomplish. So this year I paid attention to those goals and said, Why are these still areas that I need to improve on after 30 40 years? Why? Why do these keep following me? And I was able to see that pattern because I was reflecting upon my own reflections, my own goals and desires when deceived that they were out of whack. And so that was another trigger of how important it was to keep a record of how we think and what we experience.

Because at the end of the day, it may be something that we need to read and learn from at a later point, regardless of anyone else that we may need our own words at a later time. There are other reasons as well to reflect with a fast moving life. Nowadays, it’s very easy to get into a daily routine of nothingness. I don’t mean nothingness, but we can get into this daily routine of I’ve got to get up. I’ve got to get ready for work or school. I’ve got to get out the door.

I’ve got to show up to meetings. I’ve gotta think about this solution, or I’ve got to go shop for this and just kind of get into routine. And quite honestly, it’s much easier to go shop or goto work or go do some of these things than to think about what we really want to be and to become because really thinking about that and reflecting on that and trying to make changes requires a lot more work in the conscious part of our brain than the subconscious. And we often can’t check off something on a list on a daily basis.

That shows that we are changing direction and moving to wear and who we want to become. So all of that to say that I wanted to share a couple of techniques that I use and have been introduced to toward making the most of my reflections and truly making improvements in my life and work and hopefully improvements in how I approach and show up for others in my life besides the obvious recording your thoughts, you know in a journal or reflection. Recently, I’ve been introduced to an idea called Thought.

Downloads from broadcast Studio at the Life Coach School and as part of training for a coach each day were to write down what we’re thinking, and we sit down and we have a thought download. So you write down all of your thoughts, and often this turned into some kind of experience you’ve had that day or that week that you’re struggling with and just different circumstances going on in life. The thought download helps you get it all out of your brain, and then you’re supposed to re look at it and look at what you’re thinking.

And take one of the thoughts that in most cases that you actually want to deal with, that you actually want to think differently about or you’re not liking the results related to that thought and to just kind of pull that thought out of all of the other thoughts that you’ve downloaded and to work through a mental model on that thought. Now I will call it a mind framework in an upcoming episode. But essentially what you’re doing is you’re taking that thought and saying, OK, I’ve thought that thought, and you can ask why you’re thinking that thought and what you’re making that thought mean and then really thinking about okay when I think that what kind of feeling?

Um I having inside. I’m excited. Am I angry and my betrayed? Am I frustrated and my anxious? What’s the feeling that I get when I think about that thought? And when I have that feeling, what do I do? What kind of actions do I take or do I stop taking action? Do I become incapacitated? And of course, once we take those actions, what’s the result? That happens? And that’s a point where we can ask ourselves, Do we like that result? Do we want that result? And if we don’t, then we can start working on okay, what kind of thought do we need to have in order to feel a certain way toe act a certain way and to get the results that I want?

And this is a very valuable technique is to start a day with a thought download or end today whichever part of day designated to take 15 minutes and just allow yourself to get everything out of your brain. So it is kind of a journal entry, But it’s it has a twist, right? You’re getting it all out. Whatever experiences you had, whatever you’re thinking, whatever happened and then choosing to look at one of those thoughts that you’ve written down and to work through a little model on yourself to figure out what’s going on in your brain Now.

I’ve just been doing that recently, and I’m hit or miss, and I’m trying to get better doing that daily as I work through lots of different challenges in my life. But one thing I know I’ve done the last couple of years at my work is on the way home. I did the equivalent of a thought download, and I recorded it because I was driving. I’d put on my earphones and just talk into my phone, and I downloaded a particular app, which was wonderful, because it would transcribe what I spoke.

But as I did the thought download, I would then translate those thoughts into what lessons that I learned that day from everything that happened, and it was almost like I was giving a speech in my car to a naughty inside of one about Okay, so all of this happened. All this craziness happened, and all of my experiences and decisions and situations that occurred happened. And what did I learn from it? What were lessons that could be shared with others from that? What could I change is a result of it is a very powerful exercise because it’s a thought download but combined with an immediate reflection to determine what lessons could be learned from those experiences.

And if anything, I found it extremely valuable to process all of those thoughts. And it was a very cheap way to get counseling, too, because I’m talking to myself and getting it out of me and then getting to really listen to it if I wanted to, to discover what was learned, and also to discover if I was thinking in ways that later I thought, Wait a second. There’s a better way to deal with this situation or this way of thinking. I would call that a technique that is valuable toward offering up your best work at work because you are deciding to process what’s happened in a way that will serve you as you embark on whatever you’ll experience the next day at work.

And it’s a way of not just getting caught in a loop of negative reactions to work. It’s like Wait a second, that might have felt negative what happened. But I need to turn this into a lessons learned so that I can better apply different techniques and approaches because this is going to come up again in other work situations. There’s another technique that I use periodically that I started doing years ago, and I started doing this as a missionary, and I call it notebook prayers, and you can call it notebook meditations or notebook reflections or whatever you want.

I called it that because as a missionary, you have certain responsibilities, and you are trying to work hard, too. No, Who needs your help? Who needs to be taught? Ah, where you should put your efforts? I started this practice, then rise, knelt down to pray and then pulled over a notebook because I started getting impressions on people to write a note to or people to call or we should plan this activity or we really need to talk to so and so because we happen in a while and I feel like I need to catch up with them.

And I just decided to sit there and just allow whatever thought came to my mind to be written down as an action item for myself. And there are three or four pages of notes the first time I did this. Now some of these reflections could be insights for yourself or realization of a priority that you need to pursue that you were kind of putting on the back burner. Or it might be all of these inspirations on how to help and serve others. And I realize really quickly this is not something I could do every day.

There were other to do list, and there are other things in life to do. But it was something that’s a valuable technique toe look at maybe once a month or once every three or four months to just sit down with the notebook and to reflect our prey and just sit there and take notes on whatever comes to your mind whom ever you should help or do something for and then decide to act on it, because the action of acting upon all these inspirations seems to open the door to more inspiration and more opportunities to learn and grow and connect with other people.

Even though this may seem strange to some people listening to bring this up in a podcast about doing your best work, many people from many faiths and many belief systems are recognizing this importance to take time to stop focus, pay attention to the mind and write down what comes to it and start acting upon those things. Visit there for a reason and can guide you in your work in your interactions with other people. And I don’t know if I’ve ever completely finished one of those notebook prayer lists.

But I’ve made attempts, and in the process it’s led me in different directions that I may have not gone otherwise. And so don’t get frustrated if you don’t fully complete any of these things, because the act of starting them will lead you down a path where you may find a technique that works for you. That’s completely different but powerful in your life. And I know right now as I continue to make changes in my life. I keep encountering more barriers and new obstacles. And I’m remembering most of the time to write these down because they will be valuable for me at some point.

And they will be valuable to someone else who goes through this same desire to change and improve and finds out that no matter what happens often we can look back at our own reflections and see where we need to adjust or get a new idea from something that we have already reflected on. And I am realizing the importance again of hand writing these things. I had gone almost completely paperless in life except for my to do list, and now I’m rethinking that and saying, Oh, you know what?

I think I’m just gonna put all these reflections on paper, and there’s something in the handwriting of it that is different than how the brain processes it. It’s also very accessible, no batteries required as we enter a new year soon. This is often a great time of reflection anyway. And so I wanted to offer up these techniques as something to look at as you embark on that process, because maybe you’ll discover something for yourself that will help you on your journey. Have a great day and get yourself a journal if you don’t already have one or just a notebook and start writing down all of those thoughts, thank you for listening to another episode of the move your desk shows.

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