Essay About Reflection: Top 5 Examples and 8 Prompts

If you want to write a reflective essay for your next writing project, here are examples of an essay about reflection and helpful prompts to get started.

Because writing helps us explore and organize our thoughts better, it’s the best way to express our reflection. However, not everyone finds it easy to convey what’s in their mind through words. 

Essays about reflections are personal, and you must know how to communicate through words effectively. Below are essay examples and writing prompts to help you create an eye-catching essay about reflection:

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1. My Portfolio by Andrew Duffy

“Writing is not something that you leave behind after leaving school, so it is important that I take these skills… for the rest of my life. If I succeed in doing that, then I will always be prepared for any assignment that my field of interest throws at me.” 

In this essay, the author talks about his love for writing and how he improves his skills by taking different courses. Duffy reflects on how writing helped him develop critical thinking, comprehension, and grammar. It also taught him practical ways of drafting topics.

2. A Community Learning Reflection by Celeste Angeles

“…I learned that it is important to give back to our community… I learned that I enjoyed volunteering and missed doing something that I feel helps make a difference.”

Angeles shares how community services impacted her life. She mentions that it didn’t matter how much time she had to give up on volunteering. Instead, she sees volunteering as both fun and fulfilling. She says that if we love what we are doing, we always look for time to make it happen, even if it isn’t in our field of work.

3. Self Reflection by Lamar Walton

“More people have to stand up and say that something has to be done. More have to come forth and show their support and cures. It was sad to read some of the things I read and saw, but one day all this will soon go to someone’s heart, causing them to either do something or make better choices.”

Walton discusses how sad he is for poor orphans with HIV/AIDS whose lives could be saved. However, since antiretrovirals are too expensive, most orphanages can’t afford the drug. He wrote the essay hoping that someday, someone would stand up to do something about this problem, and hopefully, people would at least try to prevent the spread of the disease.

4. Self-Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson

“It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own, but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”

Emerson believes that we have to rely on ourselves instead of depending on others. To achieve freedom and independence, people must reflect on their thoughts and trust what is true to them.

5. What is Value of Life by Jake Johnson

“For decades, society has based the value of somebody’s life around the amount of money that person has and how popular the person is. That is wrong because the value of one’s life should be determined by how happy they are, the experiences they’ve had, and the relationships they’ve acquired.”

Johnson considers different viewpoints from famous individuals and literary works such as Steve Jobs and Shakespeare’s Hamlet. He concludes that the essential thing in life is attitude and thinking positively since the value of life is so much more than our social status and financial situation.

8 Writing Prompts on Essay About Reflection

Since reflective essays can seem a daunting task, we’ve compiled interesting essay prompts to create a piece that can grab your reader’s attention. 

Read our best essay writing tips to write excellent essays. 

1. Your Role Model and Their Effect on Your Decisions

Essay About Reflection: Your role model and their effect on your decisions
Discuss your role model and the characteristics or traits you respect and admire

Writing an essay about a person you look up to is an excellent subject when writing a reflective essay. First, discuss your role model and the characteristics or traits you respect and admire. Then, explain why you hope to have those unique characteristics and how the individual influenced your decision-making and who you are today.

2. Experiences You Want to Relive

Sometimes we make mistakes, and hopefully, we can rewind time to correct our wrongs. On the other hand, some experiences make us so happy that we want to experience them over and over. 

Reflect on those thoughts and relay them through writing. Doing so can help lessen your guilt over your mistakes and help you reminisce great memories. Picking this topic may also persuade your readers to create unforgettable memories of their own or deal with the faults they’ve made.

3. Things You Are Grateful For

Writing about the things you’re grateful for is therapeutic and makes you realize the positive things in your life. Incorporating it in your essay will also sway your readers to think about what they should appreciate in their life.

The things you’re grateful for can be small or big, already happened or still happening. Share your experience and why you consider these things important to who you are today.

4. Your Failures and How You Picked Yourself Up 

Everyone faces and has experienced failures. This is why writing about it will help you immediately build a connection with your readers. First, be transparent about the failure, why it happened, what you felt, how it affected your life, and what you did to move on. Then, incorporate the lessons you’ve learned. 

5. Memory You Cherish the Most

Our memories are part of us and play a vital role in shaping our identity. Write about a core memory you will never forget, one you cherish, and why. It can be as simple as coming home to your mother cooking dinner or a time you visited a place you’ve always dreamt of. 

It can also be a sad memory that makes you realize a life lesson, such as falling out with someone who used to be your best friend or attending a funeral. Each individual’s experience has different meanings.

6. The Best Advice Someone Has Given You

In dealing with life, we handle situations the way we see fit. Sometimes, we don’t know how to handle them at all. Write about a particular time in your life when you realize you’re in that very situation. 

During those challenging times, you might have received a piece of advice that helped you overcome the difficulties that you’re using to this day. Sharing the advice can even help your readers as well.

7. One Thing You Wish Others Knew About You

Some experiences help us be better people, while others ruin us. But, we must always learn from life experiences, whether good or bad.

In this essay topic, you can share one great experience, practice, or something that made you who you are now. You can also focus on a trait you want to be more prominent so people can stop a notion or assumption about you.

8. Your Biggest Personal Success

You cannot aim for success if you don’t look for it. So, reflect on what you consider your most significant personal success and why. You can also give tips on how you achieved that success. Your essay may even inspire and motivate your readers.

Are you feeling intimidated by the thought of writing essays? Then you can start with a 5-paragraph essay first.

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  • Maria Caballero is a freelance writer who has been writing since high school. She believes that to be a writer doesn't only refer to excellent syntax and semantics but also knowing how to weave words together to communicate to any reader effectively.