Pause, breathe, reflect, repeat…

“To live a life fulfilled reflect on the things you have with gratitude.”

Jaren L. Davis

One of the greatest benefits of pausing to be grateful is that it shifts the mind from focusing on what we perceive to be absent to what is actually present. To be aware of the present, and understand what a gift each moment is, is what cultivates a spirit of further gratitude.

Take a moment to pause and appreciate the most simple thing such as the beauty of a long deep breath. We can’t live without breathing but only rarely do we even notice the breath. Take a deep breath, let it out, ask yourself this question, “what is the thing that I am most grateful for right now?” Answer the question and carry that spirit of gratefulness into your day. It will change your life.

Reflection = Learning

“Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action.”

Peter Drucker

I might amend this quote to say “follow action with quiet reflection.” There is just so much value that comes from taking the time to simply think about what happened and what one can learn from any action, whether it was successful or not.

I had a rare and wonderful privilege today to take time and sit and think about leader ship, growth, and ways to become a more effective leader. It was time that was wonderfully well spent and very enlightening.

I would highly encourage anyone to be very intentional with the practice of active reflection and intentional learning. It will not happen by accident or simply through desire it must be intentional. This means that it must be scheduled and followed through on with the same discipline that one would treat any other meeting.

If you don’t practice reflection then growth and learning is left to chance and circumstance. That doesn’t seem like a very good deal to me.

New Year’s Eve Reflection…

“There we both sat and rested for a while, facing the rising sun the way we’d climbed, for looking back can sometimes help you on.”

Dante

On December 31st of each year I like to sit, preferably by a fire, and simply reflect on the year that is just ending and contemplate what is coming in the new year. I find that thinking through the goals and objectives I have for the coming year framed through the lens of the year just ending provides remarkable clarity and insight.

One of my favorite exercises on New Year’s Eve is to think about what I would like to be thinking about and reflecting on as a key success next year on 12/31The question I specifically like to reflect on is: “What specific things must I accomplish in the next 12 months to make the year a success?  “Next year on 12/31 what do I want to have accomplished or completed?”

I hope everyone has a very safe, happy and prosperous New Year!

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