Self-reflection: A Gift Everyone Should Give Themselves

As we begin the countdown to 2015, I would like to encourage all readers to give themselves the gift of time to reflect, refresh and reveal. Celebrating personal achievements, acknowledging challenges undertaken and recognizing our inner strengths serves us well as a prime motivator for personal change and advancement in the future.

I realize that engaging a mindfulness approach of listening to one’s own journey is not an easy task. It requires personal commitment and a level of courage, openness and acceptance some may not be prepared to undertake. I have found that successful friends, colleagues and mentors in my life have all embraced this gift of reflection as a natural dose of self-respect that has enhanced their personal and professional well-being.

As my coauthors and I continue our work with leading organizations and the highly skilled professionals that serve those organizations on applying the principles of the Seven Rs (Relevance, Relationships, Rigor, Rhythm, Responsibility, Resilience and Respect), I have been privileged to learn through their experience the strength of self-reflection and the mindfulness approach to leadership growth and advancement.

So during this holiday period I am sending out a grand challenge to embrace and adopt the gift of time to reflect, refresh and reveal. In accepting this challenge I would ask you that you do so not only as a year-end renewal tradition but one that you will incorporate as a recurring activity – fully recognizing that taking time for yourself is as important as any other commitments you will make to others.

Nick Gaich retired in 2012 as Assistant Dean of Clinical and Translational Research Operations, Stanford Center for Clinical and Translational Research and Education at Stanford University School of Medicine. He now helps healthcare providers through executive coaching, leadership development, strategic planning and operational performance.

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