By the end of the year we start reflecting on the events happened in the past months. Retrospective doesn’t mean regret because self doubts won’t bring you further in the future either. Rather reflect on what you can do better next time in order to improve and make a change for you and the things you have an impact on.
Meditation for Self Reflection
Reflection is another expression for consciousness. Meditation is a great tool to be mindful about your personal attitude towards life and others.
For this meditation take as much time as you need. Too often we just rush from one event to another without taking a pause to process the things happening to us. Todays fast life makes us believe that we have to do as many things as possible. We are constantly entertaining our selves without reflecting on the things happening to us. By this we are not only exhausting our energy ressources but also stealing the precious time we need to appreciate life in order to learn from it.
For the following meditation you need a pen, a big piece of paper, a meditation cushion (optional a seat cushion or a folded blanket to sit on). If you want to do the meditation in a lying position use a yogamat or a blanket on which you can lie comfortably without falling asleep 😉
Put on some warm clothes and socks (nothing more annoying than cold feet in meditation) and make your self comfy by burning some candles or diffusing some essential oils. You can also put on some classical piano music. You don’t need complete stillness for this meditation since it is rather a technique of self reflection anyways. If you spend your holiday in a trustful atmosphere you can do this meditation with your friends and family so you can exchange your experiences afterwards.
Take pen and paper and draw a table with three gaps. Name the first one “Past”, the second one “Present”, the third one “Future”. Put the paper aside and don’t pay any attention to it for the moment.
Start in an upright position and close your eyes. If you are not too tired or stuffed with christmas food you can also do the meditation in a lying position on your back. Stay in your pose for a couple of deep breaths to find your focus. Concentrate on your breath only. Be aware about the airflow coming in and out of your nostrils. Let your rhythm become slower and constant. After a few deep breaths you will recognize how your whole system including the mind is calming down.
Make your self conscious about the things that happened last year. Maybe you want to go through all the events chronology starting in January going through all the seasons. Let the pictures of the past months come and go like scenes of a movie playing in front of your inner eye. The things that are important for you will come up naturally so you don’t have to force anything.
As the movie ends you come back to the here and now. Become conscious about your breath again. Feel the presence of your physical body before you slowly open up your eyes and grabbing paper and pen again.
Fill in the gaps with bulletpoints of the events which were playing an important role in your movie. Leave some space between the different events. Which pictures came up? If you have written down all that is important for you go to the next gap. Where are you now? Go through the different points from gap one and ask your self how they could have had an impact on your present situation. Now go to the third gap. What do you want to integrate in the future? What are you taking with you and what are you leaving behind? How do you want to improve by learning from the past and being present in the future?
Retreat for Reflectiveness
The moment you calm down you create space for consciousness – no matter if it’s christmas or not. All in all you have 12 months each year 😉 and you can save a lot of time, nerves and energy when you regularly find the space to reflect on things by asking your self: Where have I been and where am I now? In everyday life you can integrate those practices on a cozy sunday night in order to reflect on the events of the past week or 15 minutes before you go to bed to think about the day. Take breaks from everyday hustle and retreat yourself to process the events taking place in you life.