Updated: Mar 9, 2019
"We cannot live in a world that is interpreted for us by others. An interpreted world is not hope. Part of the terror is to take back our own listening. To use our own voice. To see our own light.” -Hildegard of Bingen
Life is crazy and time waits for no man. The sun is going to continue to make its way through the sky with no thought of how much you have to complete today. Today’s society is fixated on this fast pace. Honestly, I am too. I’m a go getter. Procrastination has never been a problem for me. I find something that needs to be done and I’m going to have it finished before tomorrow, even if I have to stay up all night working on it. In a way, this is a great part of my personality, being a non-procrastinator (I’m pretty sure that’s a word) serves me well when it comes to deadlines and getting stuff done, but it also means I can push myself too hard. I’m thinking about all the things I need to get done, but not thinking about how to take care of myself so I can get those things done.
I believe there’s several different ways to replenish yourself (more on this in a future blog post) but introspection is the first step.
So, what is introspection exactly? According to Google it’s the examination or observation of one’s own mental and emotional processes. So basically, you’re thinking about how you think. A month ago, I had never thought about how important it is to think about thinking. (Ok. I’ll stop being confusing now.) In all seriousness, I didn’t even know introspection was a thing. After reading several articles, books, and blog posts on it, I decided that every single day for a month I was going to sit down for a good 10-15 minutes in silence and really seriously think.
Here’s 5 things I realized and 5 reasons why you should try introspection too.
1. You’ll realize what influencers are having an impact on you.
When you sit down quietly to observe your life, you begin to realize that you allow a lot of different things to influence you. You’re allowing that one criticising person, who you always told yourself you’d never be like, to get into your head. This realization came to me during this month and I was able to block out the negative influences that we’re bringing me down.
2. You gain insight into who you are and what you want to be.
Simply sitting down and thinking will bring you insight into what makes you happy and
what brings you fulfillment and purpose. If you’re not seriously taking time to be introspective you may never realize what your values, dreams, and passions truly are.
3. You’ll be able to focus on what really matters.
When you’re introspective you’re able to stop worrying about things that are out of your control. No matter how many times I’ve told myself not to stress out, I still stress out. (And then I get stressed out about being stressed out…) Introspection has allowed me to take a step back and detach myself from the things that I have no control over, and instead focus on the things that I can influence.
4. You’ll gain emotional independence.
One thing I’ve always struggled with is having emotional independence. Dependability on things outside of myself to bring me happiness was one of the main reasons that kept me from being the best person I could be. Emotional health could not be mine until I sat down with my thoughts and removed myself emotionally from each thing or person I was dependent on.
5. You’ll be able to get different results.
When you’re plowing through life without stopping to sit down and think, you’re going to continue to go through life the same way every day. When you do that, you’re inevitably blocking the chance of improving your life. “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” (Albert Einstein) Want different results? Try introspection.
Introspection allows me to interpret the world for myself; to use my own voice and project my own light. What I’m pursuing in life is no longer some long sought after obscurity.
So, ask yourself: is developing your worth and becoming the best person you can be, worth 10 minutes of your day?