Start with writing the first draft. Describe your reflective essay project. How did it contribute to your self development? Evaluate the quality of your work within your reflective essay. Did you achieve your goals? Tell how you might have made your project better. Revise your first draft. Be complete when telling “what happened” and use descriptive details to describe your actions. Stick to the point. Concentrate on your reflective essay project as a whole and include the details that really affected the final outcome of the project. Tell about your experiences while working on your essay. Answer the question: “What did you learn?” Write in a clear style that your reader can understand. Show your essay to a friend for helpful feedback.
Some Helpful Tips:
What to Include
When writing a reflection paper on literature or another experience, the point is to include your thoughts and reactions to the reading or experience. You can present your feelings upon reading what you read and why. You can also use a reflection paper to analyze what you have read. Just like in any other paper or essay, be cohesive, refer to the specific passage or quote the material that drew this feeling, reflection or analysis from you and why. It is okay to include personal experience in a reflection paper, but do not depend on it; base your reactions and reflections in the material that is your subject.
What to Leave Out
Do not use a reflection paper to simply summarize what you have read or done. It is also recommended not to use a reflection paper as a free flow of ideas and thoughts. Again, the idea of a reflection paper is to write an essay describing your reactions and analysis to a reading or other experience; however, it is more formal than a journal entry, so leave out informal language and form.
How to Organize Your Thoughts
A reflection paper should be organized as you would another formal essay. Be sure to include an introduction, perhaps that suggests what your expectations were on the reading or experience beforehand. You may also want to summarize the conclusions you came to in the introduction. Then move on to the body of your paper, explain separately the conclusions you have come to and why, basing your conclusions in concrete details from your reading and experience. End the paper with a conclusion that sums up what you got from the reading. You might want to refer back to what your conclusions are in relation to your expectations or come to some other conclusion or analysis about the text or experience in light of your feelings and reactions.