Learn Writing Reflective Essays

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Reflect With Perfection in your Essay

A reflection essay is what we call ‘throwback’ in the modern times.
The phrase ‘to reflect on’ can be quoted here perfectly – that is what this type of essay is all about. The essays in which an individual ‘reflects’ on a certain incident or memory of value, are reflective essays.
The description of the incident or memory is only eligible to be categorized into a reflective essay is that it could be used to explain some valuable virtues to the readers. Only then is it a reflective essay; otherwise it’s a narrative essay.

That’s NOT Just a Narrative

There are striking similarities in a narrative essay and a reflective essay. Both of them are written in first person, both of them are the descriptions of a personal experience or memory. Both narrative and reflective essays are like telling stories. There should be a degree of descriptive abilities in your writings so that you can write either of them like they should be written.
But the one feature that separates a reflective essay from a narrative essay is – a reflective essays necessarily need to be written on something that is important for a moral lesson, life lesson, or in general, any kind of learning that can be done from a description.

Choice of Topics

A reflective essay is not just about experiences. There are many other topics that you can fit in to the structure and regulations of a reflective essay.

  • It can be a personal experience, like a trip you went on with your friends, a really bad day and how did you overcome it, a real-life nightmare that you faced and won over, and many more such ideas.
  • An imaginary experience will also go in this category of essays. Here, you get even more freedom to manipulate facts and make it even more inspiring and valuable.
  • It can be about a place or an object that is of value to you. The focus on this stream of topics should be describing how and why the said place is important to you.
  • A person (more often than not a role model) is also eligible to be described under reflective essays. But it must be remembered that just a description won’t do – otherwise it’s just a descriptive essay.
  • You can also include your reviews about something that you’ve heard (a song, a motivation speech, a quote), read (a book, a news, anything academic), or watched (a movie, a documentary). You can write about the things you found worth learning in all of these.

Explaining the Structure

A reflective essay goes in the same format as the rest of the essays – The introduction, the body, and the conclusion. Here are the points you need to keep in mind while writing your reflective essay in a proper format.

The Introduction

It goes unsaid that your introduction should be interesting and should be able to allure readers to go on with the rest of your essay. But in addition to this, you should ensure in your reflective essay that:

  • The opening line should catch the reader’s eye, obviously. But what’s even more important, is the opening line should have a relevance to the topic.
  • The introduction should make clear in the mind of the reader, the topic.
  • Do not use long and complicated words in the introduction – it just throws off a reader away from a reflective essay.

The Body

Body of an essay houses the pointers that support the author’s point of view. A reflective essay’s body is written along the same lines. The following points, however, need to be ensured:

  • The opening of every paragraph should be with the sentence line, otherwise the readers will tend to lose on the central point of the essay.
  • Every paragraph should be dedicated to one specific point. For example, if you’re writing about how a trip to the mountains changed your life, you will need to mention every aspect of that trip that contributed to the result, in a separate paragraph.
  • The paragraphs should be written in some sort of logical order, for example, chronology.

The Conclusion

Conclusion is where your essay find the end of the road, just a few metres out. To make sure that your essay has said everything before you hit the final full stop:

  • Check that your essay has drawn the final statement that you were trying to convey by the story, experience, or the description.
  • Answer all the questions that you think the reader might have after reading the text.
  • Leave a ‘food for thought’ for the readers.

Writing a reflective essay is not difficult to perfect. But it’s not a child’s play either. The main motto of the essay is to churn a piece of information that can be used as an advice or a lesson. Along with that, the description should be engaging and interesting to read.
That done, a reflective essay is no mean feat.


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