There is much intrinsic value in mastering the art of self reflection.
As we grow beyond our five-sensory view of the world and begin, in earnest, a multi-sensory journey toward wholeness, we must become more introspective and resilient.
Each of us has an Internal Guidance System (IGS) that functions similar to the global positioning system in our vehicles. As we seek and find clarity of purpose, our mental maps will recalibrate accordingly, allowing us to trust in and rely on our IGS to pave the way toward spiritual maturity, authenticity, and integrity.
We experience our IGS via our emotions. They are the most precise and accurate predictors of who we are and where we are at any given point in time. When we examine our emotions honestly and with sincerity, we are better able to control the direction of our lives, shift gears, and alter the course if we don’t like what we see in ourselves.
We spend an inordinate amount of time evaluating the people around us and passing judgment on them and their circumstances; all the while going to great lengths to avoid any effort that remotely resembles self assessment or self reflection. We scurry through life, rarely pausing to evaluate our progress. There is absolutely no spiritual value in judging others. It is wasted energy that leads to an endless downward spiral.
Our path to spiritual maturity must begin with a willingness to take our eyes off others and turn them inward. We should make it a personal quest to continuously and objectively evaluate our thoughts, feelings, words, and deeds. We must accept responsibility for the inner work required to self correct. By paying careful attention to our emotions, we gain much needed insight into who we really are.
The most common strategy we employ to avoid self reflection is busy work. We clutter our days with extensive “To Do” lists, filling them with meaningless activities that have little or nothing to do with living life on purpose and on point. We skim the surface of our personalities and identities and rarely face our true feelings because, more often than not, our feelings are laced with such ugly emotions as anger, envy, and jealousy. Rather than face this stark reality, we create a complicated network of lies about someone else’s imperfections to avoid our own shortcomings.
Most of us accept the premise that we are called upon to serve humankind. At some level of our being we understand that purpose transcends personal agendas and requires us to engage in selfless pursuits. To be an effective servant, however, we must tap into the divine source within us in order to realize the extensive spiritual possibilities life offers.
Developing the habit of self reflection requires discipline and brutal honesty. Some rely on journals and diaries, others meditate, while still others pray for guidance to help them develop the skill sets required to indulge in thoughtful introspection. Personally, I like to use the drive home from work to reconstruct my day and determine how closely I came to realizing the ideals I have set for myself. I use this quiet time to take stock of the emotions I exhibited throughout the day. If I am not happy with the assessment, I seek forgiveness and pray for another opportunity to get it right.
We humans are created to expand and to be productive. We are at our absolute best when we are supportive and positive. The worst examples of our humanity stem from our negativity and judgmental attitudes. In order to empower our IGS to do what it is designed to do in our lives, we must be willing to rid ourselves of the ideologies, personality traits, patterns of behavior, and emotions that contradict our growth and development goals.