Reflecting on your life and your work is always useful. Even as I find answers to some things in reflecting, I’m often surprised by how many more questions it raises. I don’t know why that still surprises me after so many years of doing this, but it does. One of the questions that always comes up, without fail, is “Where to now?”
I’m starting to write another book. I can’t help myself. I really enjoyed the process for the last one, and, well, apparently, I have more things to say.
More questions than answers
I sat down this weekend to do some mind mapping. The exercise had been touted by my book coach as a cathartic process that would help empty my brain. Spoiler alert: it didn’t. It just left me more confused about where this book will go, what its core purpose is, and how it might help people.
Feeling frustrated, I sat back and looked at what I’d produced. I reflected on the mind map process. On the bigger concept of the book with which I’d started. On my overall journey which had led me to want to write it in the first place. I reflected on many levels, over many time periods. And each level of reflection gave me insight.
But I was still left with the core question. Where to now?
Where to now?
In the case of my book, the answer is to just start writing. I feel compelled to write about my experience of going through my mother’s dementia journey with her. I want to look at all the things I learned from the experts about how to change my communication with her. And all the ways I simply was unable to follow the simple but extremely difficult advice. I want to see if I can figure out additional communication strategies for caregivers that take the unique struggles of being a caregiver into consideration.
But I don’t know how any of it will unfold until I write it. So, that’s what I started doing this weekend after realizing the mind mapping had not really helped me.
Where do your reflections take you? What questions do your reflections help you answer? What questions does the process raise? And where to now?