As part of our HB journey we have been tasked to start a reflective journal to show evidence of leadership learning and applied practice. It’s NOT a diary, these are two different things. I’ve started by buying an A4 book and jotting down HB notes and experiences/thoughts throughout the odd day. It’s by no means structured or sometimes makes any sense, however it’s something that I can look back on and identify change and make me think about my practices.
“Learning without thought is labour lost; thought without learning is perilous…By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest”. – Confucius
I’m not an expert on Reflective Practice, and for that reason I’ve extracted key paragraphs from our HB document. Some more information on reflective practice
“Self-awareness is essential to being able to regulate our behaviour. It is important to be aware of the impact of our personality, behaviours, communication and work styles on those we lead. Many of the world’s most famous and impactful scientists were those who continually reflected on their personal and professional experiences to achieve their goal of finding solutions to complex problems.
Critical reflection refocuses your thinking on your existing knowledge and helps generate new knowledge and ideas. As a result, you may modify your actions, behaviour, styles, responses and learning needs. Self-reflection is a valuable yet sometimes confronting process, pushing you to think deeply about your life from a broader perspective.
The inter-section between our imagination, our insights, our possibilities-thinking, our analysis, our factual reporting, our expertise – is an important notion because it suggests that if we know our unique qualities and attributes as a leader, we can improve our professional artistry through empirical, aesthetic, personal and ethical knowing.”
(Homeward Bound Reflective Practice Document, 2019)
In addition, the HB Visibility team recommend looking at the 10 C’s of reflection which can be found here.
Journaling may soon become important to your day-to-day life. Previous HB cohort I’ve spoken to have said it’s become a daily experience now, that helps them to reflect on why and how they can change, it’s provided them insights that reveal an alternative identity to the one they see in their mind. But it’s not easy, it may be uncomfortable, confrontational or even painful for you, as sometimes, it can be very difficult to look at yourself. Just remember Reflection is a creative process, there is no definite answer. Take some time and enjoy this new experience.