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Supercharge Your Professional Development with Self-Reflection

Don't wait for professional development to just happen. Take control of your growth. You can start by setting aside time for self-reflection. Learn more from coach DeAnna Busby-Rast.


DeAnna Busby-Rast


Professional development isn't just a buzzword—it's the backbone of our personal and career advancement. Whether you're a business owner, a top-level executive, or a frontline worker, I believe that everyone has an opportunity to learn and grow. That growth requires us to take responsibility and commit to ourselves. 


Don’t wait for your company to pave the way. 


In the corporate world, companies play a crucial role in fostering employee growth. Smart organizations understand that investing in their people pays off in terms of morale, retention, and overall effectiveness. And the stats back it up—most employees crave structured development programs and personalized coaching. 


But while companies can provide resources, it's up to individuals to take the initiative. Whether it's signing up for training, seeking out a mentor, or asking for coaching, the onus is on you to seize growth opportunities actively.


Growth starts with reflection.


A fantastic leader once told me about the importance of scheduling time for introspection every year. "Put it on your calendar," he said. His point was simple yet profound: over time, we evolve, learn, and mature. We need to give ourselves the space to reflect so that we can celebrate our successes, pinpoint areas for improvement, and chart a course for future growth. 


Self-awareness is key. 


Taking time to reflect on where you are and where you’re going builds self-awareness. As you sit with yourself, you can assess your strengths and weaknesses, set targeted goals for improvement, and develop a strategy for growth. 


Throughout my career, I have ritually taken time every quarter to evaluate and celebrate my successes. It allows me to gauge where I am and realign what I’m doing to serve my goals.  


Let me give you an example. 


In June of 2023, shortly after receiving my coaching certification, I sat back and reflected on the previous six months. 


I made significant steps towards starting a new career, and I was proud of myself. During this reflection, I realized that in order to grow my business in the way I wanted to, I needed to reimagine myself in a new field. It was time for me to put the throttle in high gear. I needed to find my path, get my voice heard, and share my story with people. 


As a result, I created a networking strategy that allowed me to connect with people face-to-face as well as online. Those relationships enabled me to leave my 9-5 and focus solely on my career coaching business. The change has brought me so much joy and fulfillment. Reflection helped me identify short-term goals that lead to long-term gains.  


Here are some quick tips to help you reflect and build your professional development strategy:


1. Set aside dedicated time.

Don’t just rely on motivation for this. Commit time weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually. Put it on your calendar and color code it so that time is allocated as “must attend”! 

I like to schedule this meeting with myself at the time of day when my creative energy is highest. For me, that’s right after my cup of coffee.


2. Create a list of guiding questions.  

These questions will be your starting point. Ask yourself things like: What am I grateful for? What have I achieved? What could I have done better?


3. Celebrate your successes and identify areas of improvement. 

Be honest with yourself. If you’re having a hard time doing that, ask colleagues, friends, and clients for feedback to help you. What you learn will help you set actionable goals for personal and professional growth. You’ll have a clear idea of where you are and how you can get better moving forward.


4. Look back at your resume and update it regularly.

Your resume is a snapshot of where you are professionally. Looking at your resume regularly will help you gauge how you have grown. Based on what you see there, you’ll be able to tell whether you’re making progress or remaining stagnant. Take the insights you gain from looking at your resume to craft your goals.


By incorporating reflection into our routine, we kickstart a cycle of self-improvement. So, as we navigate our careers and pursue our business goals, let's stay dedicated to our personal growth. After all, that's the road to lasting success.

If you're seeking to sustain your momentum and drive your growth, consider engaging a seasoned career and professional development coach. The individuals who derive the greatest benefit from coaching are typically those that are committed to self-improvement, ready to venture beyond their comfort zones, and receptive to seeking guidance and support. 


Learn more about how I can help you on your professional development journey here.