The process of reflection and emptiness

Coach is infamous for urging us to be “a part of the process.” Your commitments to training do not end when practice does, but rather, all aspects of your life: emotional, health, academic, interpersonal, should be directed towards successful training. The athletes needs to show up, put in the training, and have faith in “the process”.

I’ve recently come to conclude that all aspects of life require some sort of process in order to arrive at success.(which, is kind of exhausting to think about). Reflection, is no different than training. You have to put in the work and struggle through the uncertainty and unpleasant feelings to end up with any kind of insight. There are goals or things you can achieve through your reflection, like finding the strengths or weakness of a paper.

Reflection, comes with a particular uncomfortable feeling when you’ve passed the stage of realizing there is a problem, and gone into the stage of uncertainty. For me, this is a stage I find particularly troubling. I sit in this low-grade anxiety of not knowing and fixate on the question at hand, until I find some sort of solution. My Dad calls this sort of experience “thinkers-angst.”

One of my favorite authors, Scott Peck, discusses the process of community-building and one of the stages a community goes through is particularly important to achieving community and that is the stage of emptiness. In this stage, member of the group must let go of their preconceived notions, prejudices,the need to control, expectations for the group, etc. and become open to the input of others. It is the process of emptying out all barriers so you can learn from another human being.

The stage of emptiness is perhaps what I struggle with when I reflect on my writing. I have to empty myself of any sort of ideas about what my paper is and how well I believe it to be written to be able to learn or think about my writing in a new way. Editing is a stage in the writing process that I need to put more effort into, because it ┬áis as important as the actual writing to the overall product. Just as in distance running, if you don’t ice and take care of your body, as training wears on, a lack of effort in even seemingly less-signifcant areas prevent you from achieving the end result.

The blogging process, for know, has come has reached a stopping point. Comment to continue the process.

One thought to “The process of reflection and emptiness”

  1. Alicia,

    I understand how that the complete loss for words really uproots my own writing process. I didn’t consider reflection a HUGE part of my writing until this class began, and perhaps it was because I’d never really have English courses that emphasized the importance of reflecting on your own work.

    It’s true for me as well that there’s a certain level of discomfort and uncertainty. I think it’s always easier to dwell in the realm of “never looking back” than actually analyzing how you (as a writer) may or may not have viewed something written.


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