The Optimalist
The Optimalist Podcast
Podcast Ep 35: What is the Potential of Reflection?

Podcast Ep 35: What is the Potential of Reflection?

In today's mini-episode of The Optimalist podcast, Sara reflects on the approaching year-end and the power of reflective practice. The focus isn't on traditional year-end recaps but on the potential inherent in reflective thinking. With a shift towards embracing reflective practice, the discussion delves into how this mindset can foster individual growth, aid educators, and benefit society as a whole. The episode emphasizes moving away from seeing the year's end as a closure, instead viewing it as a springboard to new opportunities, growth, and potential.

Sara reads from a narrative that touches on the significance of structured reflection, highlighting its transformative capacity when integrated into daily routines or educational experiences. She acknowledges the challenges in implementing structured reflection due to time constraints and the perception of it being unenjoyable. However, it is proposed that making reflection more automated and enjoyable, perhaps through tools like the Mirror or Reflectivity, could revolutionize its integration into education and society.

Furthermore, the episode explores the multifaceted potential of enhancing reflective skills. This includes accelerating learning, redefining assessment methods to address the challenges of AI-driven education, rethinking grading systems to foster intrinsic motivation, addressing the mental health crisis through reflection's integration with social and emotional development, achieving goal alignment, and fostering adaptability in a rapidly changing society. The podcast concludes with a sneak peek into upcoming leadership panels designed to support educational leaders in navigating change effectively in the modern world.

Key reflection: How do you currently integrate reflection in your organization, classroom, or individual professional development? How can it be transformed into a practice, rather than be seen as an occasional activity? 


(0:05:10) The Power of Reflective Practice

(0:06:14) Challenges in Implementing Structured Reflection

(0:07:10) The Potential Benefits of Enhancing Reflective Skills

(0:07:21) Maximizing Reflection's Potential in Education

(0:08:46) Reflection as the Future of Grading and Assessment

(0:09:39) Reflection and Mental Health Crisis

(0:11:31) The Importance of Adaptability and Optimism

(0:12:52) Building Adaptable Organizations and Future Work Skills

(0:14:37) Thriving in a Post-Job World: Reflection as a Mechanism

(0:18:07) Sneak Peek: Leadership Panels Coming in the New Year


Links Mentioned:

Original Optimalist Post: What is the Potential of Reflection? 

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The Optimalist Podcast is brought to you by Swivl. At Swivl, we understand that the biggest challenge in education is the rate of change. Policy revisions, technological advancements (accelerated by AI), evolving job markets, and ongoing research constantly identifying new best practices are only some of the factors affecting the rate of change in education. To learn how Swivl can help you be more reflective, engaged, and adaptable - including Mirror, our newest tool for complete transformation - visit You can also follow us on Twitter. 

We are SO EXCITED to introduce Mirror by Swivl - a new tool made to recognize the potential of reflection in classrooms. We built Mirror to thrive with AI, reflect easier, and partner with teachers. I think Mirror is where you and your students are going to meet your potential self.

Click here to sign up to try Mirror for FREE as part of our unique demo program starting in January 2024.

  • Follow Swivl on Twitter at @Swivl 

  • Follow Swivl on Instagram at @goswivl 


  • Music: “Goodnight, Shapeshifter” by MusicForNothing, used under Creative Commons BY-ND 3.0.

Audio Editing & Production: Tim Belmont (@tbelmontedu)