Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Quote-A-Day: Day 289

#Reflection is meaningless if you don't change your #practice. #QuoteADay #Day289 #edchat #edu #Reflect #Act

It is never enough just to reflect.

Rather, we need to make sure that we use what we have learned from reflecting to actually improve our practice.

It is certainly true that we don’t spend enough time reflecting in general.  But, what is even more true is that often, when we do take the time to reflect, we don’t do enough with what we have learned.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that anyone who has a few free minutes can reflect.  But, not everyone who has reflected on a learning or leadership action can truly learn from his/her work.

If we are going to invest the time into reflecting on what has transpired, then we should be willing to make changes to our practice, if for no other reason than to support the time we take to reflect.

Moving from reflection to action can be challenging.  Here are three ideas to keep in mind to help you move in that direction.

Make a promise to yourself.  When we tend to promise ourselves we will do something, it makes it harder to walk away from.  Reflect on work completed and then make a promise to yourself that you’ll change your work in the future.

Make a promise to someone else.  Once we tell others about what we hope to do, we’ve set the change process in stone.  Tell a spouse or partner, one of your kids, students, or colleagues.  But, tell someone that you’ve reflected and will now change your practice.  Then explain how.  Now there are two people counting on you to make the change (you and the person you’ve told).

Make the change realistic.  Setting realistic goals is tied to our ability to meet them.  The same is true for changes.  After you’ve reflected and have committed to change, make sure that your modification in practice is one that you can implement.  Nothing stifles change like a change that can’t be made.

Regardless of what steps you take, remember that reflection doesn’t end just with reflecting.  We have to actually change what we do.

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