Dtlls Reflective Practice

Introducing Reflective Practice
Reflective Practice is the active process of ‘witnessing’ our own experiences in order to take a closer look at them. This can be done in the midst of an activity or as an activity in itself. The key to reflective practice is learning how to take a ‘third person’ perspective on our actions and experience, i.e. examine actions and experiences from the outside looking in. By developing the ability to explore our own experience and actions in this way, we open up the possibilities of purposeful learning — derived not from books or experts, but from our everyday work and lives.
Certain kinds of experiences create particularly powerful opportunities for learning through reflection. Difficult challenges often provide a rich source of material for our reflective practice. Some challenges embody a dilemma, which may shine a light on a clash between our values and our approach to getting something done.
Positive experiences can also offer powerful sources of learning. For example, breakthroughs in action or thinking are helpful in revealing what was learned and what our model of success looks like. Breakthroughs can also instruct on an emotional level. By locating when and why we have felt excited or fulfilled by an experience we gain insight into the conditions that allow our creativity to flourish.
Reflective Practice in Action
To become effective reflective practitioners we need create the habit or establish the routine of examining our experiences. The practice for reflection can vary in terms of how often, how much, and why reflection gets done. At one end of the spectrum, a work group could go on an extended retreat after a long period and spend a great deal of time documenting and analyzing the learning that has emerged since it last took the time to stop and examine its work. At the other end of the spectrum, a person could reflect frequently, bringing high levels of awareness to their thoughts and actions in real time. This...