31 Self-Reflection Quotes to Help You Grow & Transform

Reflection is a hot topic in social work.

Because of that, I have thought about putting together some quotes about self-reflection which can help with managing mental health and overall wellbeing.

I am a huge fan of motivational quotes–check out my PINS HERE.  

You can read my articles on Inspirational Quotes for Social Workers and Inspirational Quotes About Living Life to the Fullest

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Self-Reflection Quotes to Help You Grow & Transform

self-reflection quotes


What is reflection?

Reflection is purposely thinking about an experience or action, identifying how you felt, interpreting and critically analysing them in order to learn from them. And……

What is self-reflection?

Self-reflection is a process of engaging in personal reflection about yourself.

You are able to dig deeper and question your actions or inactions.

Self-reflection quotes can inspire you as a social worker to assess yourself and help with self-awareness.

What is another word for self-reflection? 

Another word for self-reflection may be self-awareness, self – contemplation or self recognition.

It is about having a conscious knowledge of your actions, thoughts, emotions and involves the ability to focus on yourself. 

What is the significance of self-reflection?

Self-reflection will help you put yourself first.

It is about taking the time to understand who you are, what works well for you, what does not work so well and how you may make improvements should you wish. 

As a social worker, self-reflection will help you perform better in your role as you can think about your choices and actions.

Studies have also shown students have achieved improved academic results when they incorporate self reflection in their lives.

Through self-reflection we can develop an awareness of self, and this helps us reflect on our plans and goals in life.

We become happier and more productive through this. 

How do I become more self reflective?

A person does not become self reflective over night. 

It takes practice and consistency to develop the skill of self-reflection.

To work towards becoming self reflective, you can engage in self-reflective practices such as meditation, journaling, scribing, affirmations and gratitude journaling. 

With practice and consistency, self-reflection soon becomes second to nature.

How do you reflect on yourself?

self-reflection quotes

1. Allocate time for self-reflection in the morning

I have always thought organising your thoughts and yourself in the morning is a great way to kick-start your day!

Allocate some time in the morning to engage in some self-reflection and it will surprise you how well organised you can be for the rest of the day.

2. Identify important questions to ask yourself?

Before reflecting on yourself, you should first identify some important questions. For example;

  • Who am I?
  • How do I feel?
  • What is do I want in life?
  • What are my goals in life?
  • What values do I have?
  • What values would I like to have?
  • What am I interested in?
  • What am I proud about?
  • What changes do I need to make in my life?
  • How do I treat others?

3. Find a quiet place away from any distractions

Getting away from distractions will help you focus and learn about your purpose and essence.

You can think about the past, and what you did well or not so well. This will enable you to think about ways of improving.

4. Focus on you

Select a reflective process that aligns with your lifestyle.

For example, if you have children, it will not be a good idea to engage in self-reflection just before dropping the kids off at school.

5. Do this daily

Take action and do this daily.

Committing to self-reflection daily will help improve your perspective on life, values, experiences, and help you gain insight into key issues you may have identified through self-reflection.

You will be able to reflect on your thoughts, feelings and ideas to challenge them and test how they are affecting you.

Why are self-reflections important?

reflection in social work

The benefits of self-reflection cannot be underestimated.

Self-reflection can help with your personal growth.

Check out this article on Ultimate Personal Development Tips to Uplevel Your Life.

How do you practice self-reflection?

We spend much of our time thinking about our imperfections. If we spent that same time thinking about what is right about ourselves, our ideas, visions, and plans might then have the space they need to crystallise.

Set a timer and spend 20 minutes writing about your best self and worst self. List all your positive and negative traits. Keep writing until the time goes off.

Then, spend 10 minutes writing about the traits you would like to embody which do not appear in your positive traits section (example patience) and speak them out loud in first person “I am” statements “I am patient”

What are the benefits of self-reflection?

There are several benefits of self-reflection, but here are a few of my favourite:

  • Challenging your feelings, thoughts and ideas
  • Improved perspective on life
  • Improved insight into key issues in your life
  • Increased self-awareness
  • Taking action on your personal development plans
  • Generate new perspectives
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Improved resilience
  • Having positive energy
  • Less spontaneity
  • Making decisions that align with your values
  • Improved thought process
  • More analytical

How to use self-reflection quotes

self reflection in social work

There are several ways you can use self-reflection quotes, but here are a few of my favourite:

  • Make one into your desktop background
  • Write them on post-it notes on your computer
  • Turn them into a collage
  • Make a picture frame full of self-reflection quotes
  • Write your favourite self-reflection quotes in a journal
  • Start journaling 
  • Buy a book on self-reflection
  • Make your computer screen saver about reflective quotes
  • Turn your phone screen saver into a reflective quote
  • Change your alarm into an inspiring music–one with quotes
  • Listen to self-reflection quotes before getting out of bed
  • Listen to self-reflection quotes on your way to work
  • Have your favourite quote embedded in the footer of your email

Daily prompts for self-reflection

  • My goal in life is _____ and I am doing _____ to achieve it
  • My values are _____ and I would like to have _____ and _____
  • I will work on changing _____ and _____
  • My biggest strength is _____ and I would like to use it to _____
  • My weaknesses are _____ and _____ and _____ I will do _____ to improve upon it
  • I am grateful for _____ and _____ in my life
  • I will continue to work on _____ and _____
  • _____ and _____ brings me happiness and I will continue to work on it daily
  • Do I want to change anything about myself? If so, it is _____ and _____
  • I will do _____ and _____ daily to make sure I am reaching my goals
  • My perception about _____ is poor and I will _____ to change it over the next coming months.
  • I have the following fears and anxieties _________
  • I will do ________ and _____ to eliminate these fears and anxieties. 
  • I want to achieve _____ in ______ and will ______ in order to achieve this.
  • I have ______ and ____ to help me achieve my goals.

Why is self-reflection so important?

Quotes about self-reflection and growth helps us process our thoughts and feelings.

When our thoughts are not organised, it feels chaotic and we have no clarity in life.

I will recommend you read this article on Signs that You Lack Clarity in Life.

Engaging in self-reflective writing helps you develop your skills as a social worker and you can review your life. 

Self-reflection allows social workers to gain perspective.

Sometimes our emotions can cloud our judgement and we can lose sight of what truly matters.

Situations can seem even bigger than they actually are in certain circumstances.

They may even appear out of hands!

With self-reflection, you can take a step back to think through the issue, process events and achieve clarity on them. 

That way you can respond more effectively in your social work practice and your personal life.

When you take a step back, you can think of the impact your actions or inactions can have on a service user or client. 

daily self-reflection prompts

  1. “Surround yourself with really good people. I think that’s an important thing. Because the people you surround yourself with are a reflection of you”. Aaron Rodgers.
  2. “Without reflection, we go blindly on our way, creating more unintended consequences, and failing to achieve anything useful” M. J. Wheatley
  3. “I thank God for my failures. Maybe not at the time, but after some reflection. I never feel like a failure just because something I tried has failed”. Dolly Parton
  4. “It is a most mortifying reflection for a man to consider what he has done, compared to what he might have done”. S. Johnson
  5. “Be a reflection of what you’d like to receive. If you want love, give love. If you want truth, be truthful. What you give out will always return.” Kristen Butler
  6. “By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest”. Confucius
  7. “It is not by muscle, speed, or physical dexterity that great things are achieved, but by reflection, force of character, and judgement”. M.T. Cicero
  8. “It’s up to you today to start making healthy choices. Not choices that are just healthy for your body, but healthy for your mind.”- Steve Maraboli
  9. “Don’t let yesterday take up too much of today” – C. Spiegel
  10. “There is no one else as good at being you than you are. Be open to receiving advice but also trust that you know yourself better than anyone. You are an expert in your own experiences: own that. Boldly accept what makes you different. Believe in your abilities. Trust your intuition. Stand up for your ideas and know that you are exactly who you should be” – C. Spiegel

self reflection quote

  1. “Sometimes the people around you won’t understand your journey. They don’t need to, it’s not for them.” -Joubert Botha
  2. “There is always a risk when you commit to authentically being who you are. You will be judged, and some people may not like you. As scary as that may see, don’t allow yourself to become complacent in an effort to be liked by everyone else. You will be judged anyway, so why not be judged based on who you truly are?” – C. Spiegel
  3. “You are capable than you know, more brilliant than you comprehend, and more powerful than you can even begin to understand” – unknown
  4. “You are stronger than your shame. Whatever you are most ashamed of can also be the source of great resilience and ultimately, strength. You are stronger than your shame. Always remember this.” – unknown
  5. “I visualise where I wanted to be, what kind of player I wanted to become. I knew exactly where I wanted to go, and I focused on getting there.” –Michael Jordan
  6. “Remind yourself that you cannot fail at being yourself.” – Wayne Dyer
  7. “The quieter you become, the more you can hear.” – Ram Dass
  8. “Make each day count by setting specific goals to succeed, then putting forth every effort to exceed your own expectations.”– Les Brown
  9. “This above all; to thine own self be true.” – William Shakespeare
  10. “Before I ask you to sit with me, I must be able to sit with myself. Before I ask you to accept my pain, I have to accept the pain myself. Before I ask you to love me, I have to be madly in love with myself.” – C. Thoth

self-reflection quotes

What does it mean to reflect on yourself?

To reflect on yourself means assessing yourself. It is like looking in the mirror and describing what you see.

Taking time to reflect can help you in so many ways,

You can tell what is working well and what needs to change by reflecting on yourself. 

  1. “People who have had little self-reflection live life in a huge reality blind-spot.” – Bryant McGill
  2. “The purpose of our spiritual journey is not to replace the darkness with light, rather it’s to integrate and honour all the parts of ourselves… all of life’s energies.” – Deb Blum
  3. “Do not fear change for change is your friend, not your foe; change is a good opportunity to grow and shine” – S. Bailey
  4. “You learn from your experiences and realise that people are sent into our lives to teach us things that we need to learn about ourselves.” — Mandy Hale
  5. “Speak positive words into your existence for words are, in my not so humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic,” – J.K.Rowling
  6. “Allow positive and not negative people to fill your life; for growth is actually contagious, so if you want to reach your goals, you’ve got to get around people who are going in the same direction you want to be going, and you will catch the success.” — Dr. Henry Cloud
  7. “Do not shrink to fit into boxes that are too small to contain all your magnificence and excellence”- C. Spiegel
  8. “You are more enough than you can even conceive in this moment. You are brilliant. Every day, you are brighter and more resilient than you were yesterday. Remind yourself often that exactly as you are, you are enough”–unknown
  9. “Change your life for the better. Get out of the lane of ‘want to’ into the lane of ‘got to’
  10. “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” – Anais Nin
  11. “Knowledge of the self is the mother of all knowledge. So, it is incumbent on me to know myself, to know it completely.”-Kahlil Gibran
  1. “The biggest wall you have to climb is the one you build in your mind: Never let your mind talk you out of your dreams, trick you into giving up. Never let your mind become the greatest obstacle to success. To get your mind on the right track, the rest will follow.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  2. “We all make mistakes, have struggles, and even regret things in our past. But you are not your mistakes, you are not your struggles, and you are here NOW with the power to shape your day and your future.” 
    ― Steve Maraboli
  3. “Never stop dreaming, 
    never stop believing, 
    never give up, 
    never stop trying, and 
    never stop learning.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  4. “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” 
    ― Viktor E. Frankl
  5. “Letting go means to come to the realization that some people are a part of your history, but not a part of your destiny.” 
    ― Steve Maraboli
  6. “Success is not how high you have climbed, but how you make a positive difference to the world.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  7. “Never lose hope. Storms make people stronger and never last forever.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  8. “The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.” 
    ― Confucius
  9. “Sometimes life knocks you on your ass… get up, get up, get up!!! Happiness is not the absence of problems, it’s the ability to deal with them.” 
    ― Steve Maraboli
  10. “Do not let the memories of your past limit the potential of your future. There are no limits to what you can achieve on your journey through life, except in your mind.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  11. “Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four-hour days.” 
    ― Zig Ziglar
  12. “Never lose hope. Storms make people stronger and never last forever.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  13. “Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over what you don’t.” 
    ― Steve Maraboli
  14. “Surround Yourself with People Who Believe in Your Dreams:
    Surround yourself with people who believe in your dreams, encourage your ideas, support your ambitions, and bring out the best in you.” 
    ― Roy T. Bennett
  15. “Make a pact with yourself today to not be defined by your past. Sometimes the greatest thing to come out of all your hard work isn’t what you get for it, but what you become for it. Shake things up today! Be You…Be Free…Share.” 
    ― Steve Maraboli

More self reflection quotes 

  1. “The world is a looking glass and gives back to every man the reflection of his own face.”–William Makepeace Thackeray
  2. “You cannot have a meaningful life without self-reflection” – Oprah Winfrey
  3. “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” – Helen Schucman
  4. “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” – Helen Keller
  5. “It’s easier to demand a lot from yourself when you’re giving a lot to yourself,” – Gretchen Rubin
  6. “How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them!” – Benjamin Franklin
  7. “Progress is not achieved by luck or accident, but by working on yourself daily,” – Epictetus
  8. “Go back and take care of yourself. Your body needs you, your feelings need you, your perceptions need you. Your suffering needs you to acknowledge it. Go home and be there for all these things.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
  9. “We must see scars as beauty. Okay? This will be our secret. Because take it from me, a scar does not form on the dying. A scar means I survived” – Chris Cleave. 
  10. “Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your heart. Whoever looks outside dreams, whoever looks inside awakes.” – Carl Jung
  11. “Our self-image, strongly held, essentially determines what we become.” — Maxwell Maltz
  12. “Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we will ever do” – Brene Brown

Funny self reflection quote

  1. I look into the mirror and all I see is me! – socialworkhaven.com
  2. “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” Zig Ziglar
  3. “Work until your bank account looks like a phone number.” Unknown.
  4. Bad ideas, poor decisions, bad experiences make wonderful stories – socialworkhaven.com

Before you go

I hope these quotes about self-reflection, self-awareness and progress have inspired you to put yourself first and make more time for yourself.

Ultimately, you want a work-life balance!

Let me know:

Which of these self-reflection quotes is your favourite?

Tell me in the comments. I would love to share them with my readers!

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