EP 48: Making Time for Self-Reflection with Traci Scherck

Making Time for Self-Reflection

Reflection is an essential part of any leadership role. It gives us an opportunity to pause and consider observations or experiences, reviewing the things we have learned and how far we have come. However, many leaders miss this important process. So, in this episode, I will be sharing the benefit of taking the time to reflect and how to implement this process into your business.

What You’ll Learn In Today’s Episode

  • The value of taking time to reflect. (2:10)
  • What reflection requires and how to implement this process. (5:05)
  • The importance of celebrating the positive growth we’ve experienced. (11:05)

Actionable Takeaway for HR Professionals:

  • Take a step back and see what fulfillment means to you. (20:45)

Actionable Takeaway for Executives:

  • Create the time to reflect for yourself. (20:10)

Ideas Worth Sharing

“Reflection requires us to adopt a mindset of not knowing and curiosity.” - @TraciLScherck Click To Tweet

Resources In Today’s Episode

Enjoy the show? Use the Links Below to Subscribe:
















Click Here for Audio Transcript

Traci Scherck: Welcome to the talent optimization podcast my name is Tracy Scherck and i’m the chief talent officer here at elevated talent consulting and welcome to December of 2021.

Traci Scherck: We have been on a bit of a journey over the last couple of years, and one of the things that we love to do in our business every December.

Traci Scherck: is really to reflect on what that your has been, and specifically with that growth is, and you know and it’s, not just in business, but it’s also personally and what is going on right so.

Traci Scherck: I was sitting in the bleachers last night watching.

Traci Scherck: A wrestling scrimmage and I have to tell you, I have never watched wrestling before, and so, for those of you listeners out there that watch wrestling.

Traci Scherck: You know I could use some support here, I have no idea what i’m watching but anyways um but as i’m watching this i’m watching my son Ian.

Traci Scherck: As he is wrestling you know he’s been in this for a whole two weeks, this is, you know, a sport that we’ve just never known about really been involved in.

Traci Scherck: And just the strength and the determination and seeing how far he has come really since August, when he really got into and made up his mind that he was going to pursue something.

Traci Scherck: which was hey you know, he said was hey mom I want to really be involved in sports.

Traci Scherck: And not really sure what that looks like he had swim in the past and are the school that we go to doesn’t offer swimming and unfortunately they can’t do it out the other local schools so.

Traci Scherck: With That being said, the kid is hitting the weight room every morning at 515 So yes, i’m up at 515 taking him to school right.

Traci Scherck: But, but this reflection is so important because i’m seeing the strength and the determination that he has and the plan that he’s made to get up and do it now, the lesson that I had for him or the agreement that we had for 515 weightlifting was.

Traci Scherck: I must have coffee in my cup like I must have that coffee in order to you know get out of bed to take you to weightlifting at 515 in the morning and the kid has done it and it’s amazing and.

Traci Scherck: So I will segue back into kind of how we reflect on our Year and what that looks like.

Traci Scherck: But I wanted to share that with you because sometimes it’s hard for us to see our own progress for us personally when we reflect on how we’re doing or what our personal growth is but it’s really easy to see it in someone else.

Traci Scherck: So I just wanted to name that because that reflection becomes incredibly important.

Traci Scherck: So, as we chat today we’re going to talk about you know reflection what that process of reflection is, and then the next couple of weeks are going to be really fun because next week, we will chat with damon Clark and damon is.

Traci Scherck: A consultant that actually worked with our team and reflecting on our previous year.

Traci Scherck: As a team and as individuals, then you know how we went through and plan strategically how we best serve our clients and do we have the right talent to do that.

Traci Scherck: And then the third week of December we will actually walk through with you some of that specific planning as an organization and as a team and.

Traci Scherck: So with that Thank you so much for being here so as we talk about reflection and I reflect on our organization elevated talent consulting and my personal growth over 2021.

Traci Scherck: One of those things for me that has been the most fulfilling for me is i’ve gone and taken.

Traci Scherck: classes to get my coaching certification through the International coaching federation, for I cf.

Traci Scherck: And here’s the thing with coaching and you know coaching is the most useful reflection involves the conscious consideration and analysis of beliefs and actions for the purpose of learning.

Traci Scherck: And this is a quote from an hbr article by Jennifer porter and you know that’s something that’s so important is so often we don’t want to reflect.

Traci Scherck: On what’s been going on, because we see those things that are great, but we also see some of those things that are you know those.

Traci Scherck: ugly truths about ourselves, and then we look at that and go okay well do I want to play with that or don’t die right like it’s always a conscious choice.

Traci Scherck: But you know, one of the things that I hear so often with the clients that we’re working with is will Tracy tell me why this is important tell me what the business case for this is an Roi, and so there was research done by.

Traci Scherck: by a number of call centers, so this is Bradley stats and call centers demonstrated that employees who spent 15 minutes at the end of the day, reflecting about lessons learned.

Traci Scherck: performed 23% better after 10 days and those who did not reflect.

Traci Scherck: So what exactly does reflection require right reflection requires us to slow down, it requires us to adopt a mindset of not knowing and curiosity, we need to really understand that this is messy and it’s sometimes feels really inefficient.

Traci Scherck: But it is our responsibility to take that personal responsibility for what we’re specifically doing it because it can give us really valuable insights and key breakthroughs.

Traci Scherck: into what’s working what’s not working, you know, one of the things that we really look at here at elevated talent consulting is we believe every individual, has a right in a choice to be fulfilled in the work that they do.

Traci Scherck: And one of those key questions that I asked myself and that I asked my team is you know what has you fulfilled in your work and we have a standing team meeting every week and we’re starting with them are asking those key questions, what has you fulfilled in your work.

Traci Scherck: And that reflection comes out to say so often it’s the negative things that come out first right, because what we know is that we have over 50,000 thoughts per day and most of those thoughts are negative.

Traci Scherck: And 90% of those thoughts are just repeats from the day before, and that was researched on by Wood.

Traci Scherck: And you know so when we specifically look at those thoughts that we have and when we’re reflecting on them, we have a choice and what thoughts, we choose to grab on to and have that impact those feelings that we have right, so you know, one of the.

Traci Scherck: One of the mentors that i’ve had in my life is brooke castilllo and brooke has.

Traci Scherck: A model, a thought model and for thought model is essentially hey there’s a circumstance right those circumstances happen all the time.

Traci Scherck: And we can’t we may or may not be able to control those circumstances right.

Traci Scherck: And I like to say hey, we need to be the board, and when we are the board, essentially, that is, that we are responsible for everything that happens in our life so.

Traci Scherck: there’s a circumstance that happens great i’m just going to you know, accept that this thing happens because, if I fight it i’m just creating more drama right so i’m going to set that this thing happened and then.

Traci Scherck: I am going to have a thought about it i’m going to have lots of thoughts about that right.

Traci Scherck: And those thoughts that I have about that thing are going to create certain feelings those feelings are going to.

Traci Scherck: Create actions and those actions are going to create results, so this is the thought model that Brooke Castillo uses.

Traci Scherck: In teaches so again it’s their circumstances those circumstances, create feelings those feelings create actions those actions create results right.

Traci Scherck: and with That being said, those thoughts every thought you have impacts, the feeling that you have so if you look at that and say hey you know what.

Traci Scherck: Yesterday there were you know 72 different things that happened there was a number of different interruptions I can look at that and say.

Traci Scherck: Oh, my gosh yesterday was a really crappy day right the feeling that I have, then, is either crappy it’s it could be anxiousness it could be overwhelmed.

Traci Scherck: And that feeling is going to drive those actions that I take you know and those actions that I take.

Traci Scherck: Maybe that I scroll on Facebook right those actions that I take maybe i’m going to create a plan to get these things done so, but i’m not going to create a plan to get those things done.

Traci Scherck: Based on that specific thought right, so I need to choose a different thought so if the circumstances I had 87 interruptions the thought is wow I need to create stronger boundaries for what I need to protect my time to get some of those key things done.

Traci Scherck: And that is going to create a feeling of you know, ownership of empowerment of you know what I can absolutely get this done, I just have to create the plan for it.

Traci Scherck: And then that creates the action of I go and do it, and the result is that those things that I wanted to get done will absolutely get done right.

Traci Scherck: So those thoughts that we have a huge impact on the results that we get so as I circled back around to reflection, which is what we’re talking about today.

Traci Scherck: And as we reflect on that work that we’re doing and that work that we did over the last year, and if we were fulfilled in it or not really thinking about hmm what thoughts was I having about that and even you know consciously making those thoughts aware in your head as you’re reflecting.

Traci Scherck: And, knowing that it is always a choice, life is not happening to you right that’s a thought life is happening to you or life is happening for you, both those are thoughts.

Traci Scherck: It is up to us to decide which thought we’re going to grab and use right and I choose to grab the thought that says, life is happening for me and.

Traci Scherck: I can absolutely create that life that I want to today and I can create those results in my business and for my clients.

Traci Scherck: If I believe that I know that i’m halfway there now the reflection on this is looking back at what we’re actual results, because your results are always going to be.

Traci Scherck: A direct reflection of the thoughts that you were having so did you meet your results if you didn’t meet the results that you have looked for over the last year.

Traci Scherck: Why didn’t you meet them and what were those results that you did me.

Traci Scherck: and ensuring that we’re celebrating those because when we go through this reflection exercise and what I see so often happens with my coaching clients in our consulting clients here at elevated talent.

Traci Scherck: Is that we focus on the negative and when we start to focus on the negative we don’t create that plan forward and here’s the trick.

Traci Scherck: It is incredibly important to acknowledge what didn’t work well and then to determine how do I want to think about that negative result, so that I can get a different result next time, because if we don’t consciously choose a different thought we’re not going to move towards that and.

Traci Scherck: One of the other thing is that you know Jennifer porter had stated, and I love this is that as leaders, we have a bias towards action and the example that she used is that soccer goalie is.

Traci Scherck: You know soccer goalies who stay in the Center of the pool have a 33% chance of stopping the goal, yet only 6% of goalies stay in the Center of the goal.

Traci Scherck: And why is that, and the reason why that is, is because they feel like they need to be doing something.

Traci Scherck: And you know as leaders and, as you know, employees and staff etc in our organizations.

Traci Scherck: So often, we feel like we have to be doing something so we’re just doing doing doing doing that, the question is, are you hitting your business results.

Traci Scherck: Are you hitting those results that you set out to hit and if you’re not hitting those results.

Traci Scherck: you’re spinning your wheels and you’re probably overwhelmed and that’s creating anxiety and all the other things that’s right.

Traci Scherck: You know there’s been so much conversation over the last two years about mental health and how we support mental health in the workplace and it’s an absolutely needed topic.

Traci Scherck: And with that, as we reflect back think about those thoughts your having and are the thoughts, you are personally having impacting your mental health and the answer is yes So how do you create that so that you can move forward.

Traci Scherck: So how do we do this reflection thing right we’ve talked a lot about what we’ve talked about thoughts.

Traci Scherck: And I will tell you right now i’m just going to pause a second and say there’s already been a ton of content in this episode that you may need to go back and listen to this one, a couple of times take some notes on it.

Traci Scherck: You know inside of our challenge optimization foundation program we do webinars we will be doing a webinar with this specific.

Traci Scherck: content that goes into it a little bit deeper and how to get into that will be in the show notes for you.

Traci Scherck: So, as you go into how do you actually do that reflection right, so let me just name specifically what that is so, the power of reflecting on what you’ve accomplished prior to planning to see where things went so.

Traci Scherck: That is the importance of reflecting before we plan so we want to know what we accomplished, and we want to know what are we going to do.

Traci Scherck: Different next time here’s the thing our thoughts play a huge role on how we see ourselves, and what that looks like in our organizations.

Traci Scherck: And home lives as well, and that is a quote directly from Jennifer porter and I love that because it’s tying in.

Traci Scherck: Those thoughts that we have and we talked quite a bit about thoughts are ready at the beginning of this episode, so those thoughts, we have have a direct reflection on.

Traci Scherck: How we reflect and what we see as an accomplishment or not, so you know, again we have 50,000 thoughts a day guess what.

Traci Scherck: More than half of them are going to be negative, because life’s 5050 right and 90% of them are repeats from the day before.

Traci Scherck: Do we want to keep repeating the old thought patterns that don’t serve us the answer’s no.

Traci Scherck: So we really need to be aware of what those are so that we can understand ourselves and have the motivation to learn what our values are so that we’re not giving that power away, but we are creating that fulfilling.

Traci Scherck: Life for ourselves and guess what no one else can create that fulfilling life for you.

Traci Scherck: you’ve got to do it yourself, yes, as leaders inside of organizations, we will absolutely create the container for every individual to be fulfilled in their work and meet the business outcomes.

Traci Scherck: But we can’t give from an empty cup and so with That being said, this reflection piece is really going to allow us to see.

Traci Scherck: What went well over the past year, what didn’t go well, and what the heck do we want to do about it.

Traci Scherck: So we’re not on autopilot and making the same decisions over and over again, based on the same thoughts that aren’t serving us or organization and the individuals that work with us for us and that we serve.

Traci Scherck: So, as we go into kind of the the third part of our conversation today, which is i’m going to give you some questions to reflect on.

Traci Scherck: I really want you to understand that there’s a right way and there’s a wrong way to do reflection right so to help stay on the right path with your self reflection, I want you to consider asking more what questions, rather than why questions.

Traci Scherck: Because why questions can highlight our limitation and stir up negative emotion while what questions, help to keep us curious and positive about the future, and this was research done by uric.

Traci Scherck: So there’s three questions that I really have for you and i’m going to name that these are all about fulfillment because what we believe is every individual, has a right in a choice to be fulfilled in the work that they do so this first question is.

Traci Scherck: Am I fulfilled in my work and I was having a conversation with a client yesterday about are you fulfilled in your work, and the answer was no and when I dug in deeper.

Traci Scherck: You know why aren’t you fulfilled and in your work, the answer that she you know gave back to me was because all the things of all these other people around me I said, you know what i’m curious What do you do have control over.

Traci Scherck: So, are you fulfilled in your work, the answer was no is, what do you have control over here’s the thing if you’re going to choose.

Traci Scherck: To make a decision to leave something make sure you’re going towards something.

Traci Scherck: versus running away from something so are you fulfilled in your work if the answer to that question is no figure out how you can create that fulfillment in your work and then you can still make a different decision.

Traci Scherck: But know what that is first because that’s what you always bring yourself with you.

Traci Scherck: So the second question that I have for you is what created the fulfillment that I do have, in my work and in my life.

Traci Scherck: And by the way, you can swap out work for life in any of these questions right, so what fulfillment do you have again, we know that there’s 50,000 thoughts that go through our head on a daily basis, more than half of them are negative.

Traci Scherck: If we don’t naturally pull out and consciously choose to look at those positive things and not pollyanna positive right.

Traci Scherck: But if we don’t actually choose to pull out and look at those positive things we will be creating a situation.

Traci Scherck: Where we’re specifically only seeing the negative so it’s really important to consciously choose that.

Traci Scherck: we’re absolutely going to look at what those negative thoughts are because they’re can give us really unfortunate information.

Traci Scherck: But we want to look at what those positive ones are then we want to choose consciously, what are we going to do with the things that didn’t work so that we can create a plan.

Traci Scherck: and choose if we even want to focus on it right so i’m going to repeat our questions, so that you have them all together, so the first question is is Am I fulfilled in my work life, either one into both.

Traci Scherck: Second question is what created the fulfillment that I do have in my work in your life.

Traci Scherck: And then the third question is what would I change with a time turner right like if you have the ability to go back in time.

Traci Scherck: To any point throughout 2021 What would you change to create more fulfillment in this last year.

Traci Scherck: So what would you change in order to that notice that that’s just another way of saying hey, what are the negative things but i’ve turned that into how do we possibly look at this, so we can have the motivation to move that thing forward.

Traci Scherck: And then, a bonus question, and that is what don’t I know.

Traci Scherck: That would create more fulfillment in my life.

Traci Scherck: Right, so what don’t you know.

Traci Scherck: And guess what there is a ton that we don’t know.

Traci Scherck: But, yet when we put on this expert hat, or when we step into those leadership roles, sometimes we feel like we have to know it all and we absolutely don’t you know, the biggest key when we look at how do we optimize talent inside of our organization.

Traci Scherck: Is hire people that their strength is your weakness.

Traci Scherck: And then figure out how to collaborate together on that so that you are executing those key strategies in really beautiful and magnificent way is to hit those business outcomes.

Traci Scherck: And we’re going to talk so much more about that next week, when we bring on Damon so with That being said, you know we always end our podcast or what’s one key takeaway for CEOs, and that is to create the time to reflect, for yourself.

Traci Scherck: As a person, you know what would well in 2021 for you personally and what went well in 2021 for you as an organization.

Traci Scherck: You know, get some help with us, you know hiring a coach is something that will allow you to do this incredibly incredibly well.

Traci Scherck: Because they’re that thought partner that can allow your thoughts to become.

Traci Scherck: outside of your head versus in it, where it’s running the same story over and over and over again into really create that space, so that you can see it.

Traci Scherck: So what’s one key actionable takeaway for our HR listeners is take a step back and look at what fulfillment means to you.

Traci Scherck: celebrate those successes that have happened over the last year guess what this has not been an easier for HR professionals at all.

Traci Scherck: But reflect on what those great things are and remember you can’t get from an empty cup you’ve got to fill up yourself first so with That being said, I am so thrilled that you.

Traci Scherck: joined us today and our conversation about reflection.

Traci Scherck: I trust that you are going to take some time over this next week to reflect personally for yourself those questions will be in the show notes as well.

Traci Scherck: And if you are interested in the webinar that we’re doing on this it’ll be inside our talent optimization foundation program which you can also find in the show notes.

Traci Scherck: Along with our coaching programs, so thank you so much for joining us, we hope that you have a fantastic day and amazing and 2021 that has you fulfilled and excited for what 2022 will bring Thank you so much, and have a great rest of your day.