Reflection is a necessary component in learning in order to understand our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Reflection helps link experience and knowledge by providing an opportunity to critically reflect on our own experiences in order to make adjustments and improve the way we perform.
As a healthcare professional, reflective practice is necessary to ensure ongoing improvement in the quality of care I provide and to help integrate theory into practice.
The PIDP program introduced the Focused Conversation model as a means to deepen reflective practice by encouraging four levels of progressive reflection. Objective to Reflective to Interpretive to Decisional. The structure and sequencing of this model has been really helpful when trying to make sense of new concepts and to expand my learning. I particularly found the reflective level most effective as it seems to be when I make that emotional/personal connection to the concept that my greatest learning has taken place. The following provides recommended components to consider at each level:
- Objective: Focus on the facts, the objective data.
- Reflective: Personal reactions, emotions, and associations.
- Interpretive: Meaning, values, significance, purpose and implications.
- Decisional: Resolution, clarify action and impact on future practice.
Stanfield, B. (2000). The art of focused conversation: 100 ways to access group wisdom in the workplace. Toronto, ON:ICA The Institute for Cultural Affairs.
In further research on reflective practice many healthcare professionals use Gibbs Reflective Cycle Model (1988), and I can see the value it would have in the delivery of healthcare and would like to explore its use in my current work. While it is still new to me, I can see the value in asking myself – what else could you have done? There is always more or a different way things can be done and this cycle encourages the evaluation of just that. Gibbs reflective cycle is a process involving six looped steps:
- Description– What happened?
- Feelings– What did you think and feel about it?
- Evaluation– What were the positives and negatives?
- Analysis– What sense can you make of it?
- Conclusion– What else could you have done?
- Action Plan– What will you do next time?