Harvard Business Review did a study that found that a person could increase their productivity by up to 23% if they reflected at the end of the day for just 15 minutes. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t want to increase their productivity. As I asked my clients what that would mean for them, one of them stated, “It means I could work less!” I agree. If I could increase my output by 23% I probably wouldn’t have to work as much, I would get more done, and I think the research shows that I would work more confidently.
Reflection isn’t just looking at what I did today, it is looking at how I did what I did. I started a 21-day practice with my clients who have an accountability partner and are checking in at the end of each day with accounts of their reflection. It is very powerful to think about what happened and how I responded or reacted, identifying the good and the bad. If I miss the mark of “role-model” words and actions, then acknowledging it and identifying what I would like it to look like in the future helps to plant that new way in my mind. When I do knock it out of the park, celebrating that so that I can repeat it and gain confidence is grounding the good behavior.
If you make this a practice, and you start to do the things you want more naturally and easily, and you stop doing the things that make you cringe inside, how much more could you accomplish? Better yet, how much less time will it take to accomplish what you need so you can focus on something fun. If you could have 2 extra hours a day, or an extra day off each week, what would you do with it? In a 40 hour week, 23% is a little more than 9 hours.
My wish for you is peace. You can gain it by reflecting on your day and grounding the behavior you prefer.