The Basics of Writing a Reflective Essay

A reflective essay, at its core, is very simple. It is what its name implies – an essay in which you reflect on life experience. However, when you start one, it can prove to be more difficult than you might have initially thought. But if you follow this guide – written by professional essay writers critically analysing your thoughts will definitely be easy!

The Format

In reflective essay writing, the writer typically uses their own life experiences. The purpose of the essay is for allowing the writer to be able to ‘ reflect ‘ on one of their own life experiences and be able to examine how they grew from it and what lessons were imparted unto them. The format of the reflective essay can change based on how the author wants to convey their message to the audience. It can be presented in the form of a diary entry or as a log entry too.

Depending on the audience, the author may change the format, reflective essays can be academic or for a newspaper. However, the purpose of one does not change.

How to Choose Your Topic!

When choosing the topic for your essay, it is important to think about what meaningful events happened in your life. The aim of this essay is not simply to tell the readers about a story from your life – there must be many! But the essence of it is to show the readers what you learned from a certain experience, how you grew and how going through what you did helped develop you into who you are today.

Some points that may help you come with a topic are; choosing an experience such as a valuable life lesson from a friend or your parents. An experience which impacted you negatively or positively, the time you got your first pet, something that you saw in a movie or read in a book. The topic can be anything, what is important is the experience of going through that event.

Now You Reflect

It’s easy to think that a reflective essay is going to be amount reflection, but some people underestimate the importance of reflecting properly. It’s important you fully recount how the experience you have chosen has affected you. This entails that you use your memories and feelings of the event to describe how you felt when the event occurred and how you felt after too.

Then you need to sit down and really dive deep into your mind the intricate details of the event. It’s important that you describe the event fully to the reader so the reader also understands what you went through. A good suggestion is to write stuff down so that you don’t forget it again.
When you start writing those memories down, it can be helpful to use adjectives in order to describe them more vividly. This way, not only can you paint a better picture for the reader, but also for yourself.

Plan of Action!

This one is extremely important! Do not simply just sit down and begin writing your essay. This is the first mistake people make and can often lead them to get lesser marks in their essays. Before you start your essay, come up with a plan of how you are going to structure your essay. The plan is just another name for an outline, the outline is what assists you in keeping a well-formed structure in your essay. Especially when recalling memories while writing, there is a chance that you will get a bit disorganised or lost in your thoughts and this can affect the overall message your essay is trying to convey.

The Essay Itself

As with any other essay, this one consists of 3 main parts. The Introduction, main body, and the conclusion.

The purpose of the introduction is to provide a compelling hook in order to garner the interest of the reader. Make them want to keep reading, this can be done by introducing suspense or by asking a question.

In the main body, try keeping the order of events chronological. This means that you describe the events of your experience one after the other and not the ending before the beginning!

The conclusion serves as your method to tie everything together. Expand a bit on how you grew as a person because of how the experience affected you.

Help?

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