How to Write a Reflective Essay ?

A reflective essay is a piece of writing that is personal in nature and often relates to an experience or event. It’s not about what someone else has done, but rather something the writer has experienced personally. A reflective essay usually covers one specific topic, but it may also cover more than one subject if they are related to each other. Reflective essays are typically written when there is some distance between the writer and the experience they are reflecting on—perhaps many years after it happened.

A reflective essay can be used in order to help people grow as human beings by examining their past experiences in light of their current life situation, which can lead them to make changes for themselves that will benefit others around them at the same time. The goal of a reflective essay is to look back with a critical eye in order to learn something that can be applied in the future.

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As far as writing styles go, reflective essays are often written using free-form poetry in which each line relates to the one before it in some way. They are usually written in paragraph form with only a few lines per paragraph rather than an average five or six.

Reflective essays are often longer pieces of writing that can span anywhere from 500 words up to 2600 words. The exact word count will depend on the topic being covered, how much research goes into the piece, and whether or not there are any sources included throughout it.

When you sit down to write your own reflective essay , keep these tips in mind:

First of all, your reflective essay should not be more than 500-700 words in length. The introduction and the conclusion will together add up to about 500 words while each paragraph adds another 100-150 until you reach a total of 700 words for the paper as a whole.

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The topic being explored must be something that actually happened to you because reflection means that you are looking back on something that just took place rather than imagining yourself into the situation. It’s best if it’s an experience where there is still some distance between it and now so you can look back critically rather than nostalgically.

Since it needs to have taken place at least once in order for you to understand what has happened, it also needs to be universal. For example, “I failed a test” is not universal and therefore will probably not make the cut as a topic. A better candidate might be something like, “I failed my driver’s test” because failure is something that most people can relate to.

The writing style needs to be free-form poetry with each paragraph covering one significant moment during the time period you are reflecting on. If it was an important event, there may be more than one paragraph dedicated to it. The last paragraph of your reflective essay will summarize what you’ve learned and why this is so important now that you have distanced yourself from the past enough to really see everything clearly.

Write About What You Know

When writing your reflective essay , consider what type of experience you have in your past to draw on for this assignment. If you’ve never done anything significant, it’s going to be very hard for you to write about it. You should also consider how long ago the experience took place because the longer it has been since then, the easier it will be for you to distance yourself from what happened—which is an important part of reflection.

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For example, if I want to reflect on my first day of college and all that that entailed, I can go back and remember in detail almost everything that happened during those hours when I was getting myself situated. However, if I want to try finding a universal moment from my childhood in order to do a reflective essay , I’ll spend less time picking out the significant moments and more time reminiscing because it happened so long ago.

Start with a Line, Not an Outline

When you sit down to write your reflective essay , start by taking one line from each paragraph and then stringing them together into a free-verse poem. This will be your topic sentence and your thesis statement: the introduction and conclusion for this piece of writing all in one. Afterward, take another line from each paragraph and continue this pattern until you have enough material to fill the minimum 500 words needed for this paper.

Throw Away Your Thesis Statement

While it is good to have a strong thesis statement at the beginning of any type of academic writing, your reflective essay should not be structured this way. It needs to become evident as you write the first draft that the thesis statement is the focal point of everything else because it’s a poem—not an argumentative paper written from your opinion about what happened.

Avoid Losing Yourself in Details

The college-level writing instructors who created the reflective essay do not want you to get bogged down by details for this assignment. While it might seem like a good idea to include every little moment from your past, you will need to leave most of them out if you want to create a cohesive piece of writing. If the reader cannot follow the flow of your thoughts and where they are going without getting distracted by irrelevant moments, then you have failed in your task as an essay writer.

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Make It a Poem, Not a Summary

While it’s alright to summarize the moments from your experience in general terms at times throughout your reflective essay , don’t make this paper a list of brief summaries. The reader needs to follow you as you take them through the past and they cannot do that if each moment is just one sentence long because then there would be no flow or connection between all of these moments that happen during reflection.

Write About What You Have Learned

By distancing yourself from what has happened and looking back on it, you come out with more than just memories: you also gain knowledge about yourself and what transpired. This is why this assignment is so difficult for many students because it forces them to look at the past in order to gain knowledge of it. If you cannot do this, then your reflective essay will be missing an important part of what makes this writing assignment so significant.

If you are having trouble starting your reflective essay , then consider using our custom research paper writing service today! We can help you get started with any type of topic that is keeping you stuck right now!

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