As one year ends and another begins, it’s natural to reflect on both the past and the future — who we were, who we are, and who we want to become.
My guest today offers three questions that can help make that self-reflection truly fruitful, insightful, and possibly even life-changing. His name is Gregg Krech, he’s executive director of the ToDo Institute, which promotes principles of psychology based on Eastern traditions, and the author of Naikan: Gratitude, Grace, and the Japanese Art of Self-Reflection. Gregg and I begin our conversation with what Naikan is, and how this structured method of self-reflection can hold up a mirror to your life, helping you gain greater self-awareness, and see reality, and the way people perceive you, more clearly. Gregg then walks us through Naikan’s three rich, incisive questions and how to use them to help you discover how you really show up and operate in the world. We end our conversation with how to incorporate these reflections into your daily routine, and even make it a special ritual with which to ring in the new year.
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- What is naikan? What’s its history?
- How naikan fits into the idea of morita (action oriented) therapy
- The value of self-reflection
- Why we often miss how much other people are doing for us
- Moving from a complaint-based life to one of gratitude
- The power of asking yourself what you’ve received in the last year
- How to work reflection into your daily routine
- Why it’s important to look at what you’ve given to others
- The hardest question of all: what are the difficulties I’ve caused?
- Turning naikan into a regular ritual
Resources/People/Articles Mentioned in Podcast
- My first interview with Gregg
- 30 Prompts for Reflection on Your Integrity
- The Real Virtue of Thankfulness
- AoM series on spiritual disciplines
- Gut Check: Are You a Contemptible Person?
- Never Complain; Never Explain
- Ego Is the Enemy
Connect With Gregg
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Read the Transcript