Reflection: Lessons you didn’t expect to learn

After my website turned one year last month, I decided that it is time for some reflection. I have done reflections before on this website, but today I will take a closer look at the education I got, that I wasen’t expecting.

Bold tree

I started this day with photographing heathland and also got to do some black and white photography!

In my role as an IT consultant, I try to deliver an additional value to my clients, rather than just the value they expect me to deliver. When clients select us to deliver a project to structure information in order to help business analysts and sales do their jobs, we are always happy if our solutions helps procurement too.

Delivering value for money is my job, but the extra value is what makes a project a great success. In photography I do little projects for myself where I focus on things I want to learn or improve. And often, I find I learned more than I intended to learn, delivering added value to myself.

A while ago, I wrote a blog in which I compared two lenses, a 50 mm and 35 mm lens. My goal was to find out which lens I preferred in what situation. While playing around with these lenses, I also got to know them better. I experienced how the 50 mm compresses the scene more than the 35 mm lens, and I took photos I wouldn’t have taken if it wasn’t for this project.

Still Life from above

Still Life shot from from above.

If it wasn’t for this project, I would not have taken the photo above. As I usually try to shoot a still life at “eye level”, I know decided it would be fun to photograph it from above.

A much bigger project is this blog. My goal is to learn more about photography and share it with you people. The added value? I enjoy photography more than ever, and truly live and breathe photography every day. And not only that, I met some wonderful people to share photos with, and I draw a lot of inspiration from other bloggers I meet here. It added value, to the value I expected. And it is not limited to above. I also learned a little about painting, Improv and other arts too by writing about it. Also very inspiring! And I even topped it off with a publication!

Blogging also improved my English and writing skills. Another lesson learned that was not a primary goal.

One more project I did, were the posts about asking feedback on some of my photos. As a result I got what I wanted, feedback. But when I went back to take some photos and apply you feedback to them, the sky treated me to a light show the way only nature can do! Not necessarily a lesson learned (besides to take your camera everywhere), but a big added value!

Summer sunset at Hoorneboegse Heide

If it wasn’t for my little feedback project, I would have never taken this picture!

So how do you recognize the lessons you did not define? It is all about reflection. Define your goals, chase them, and periodically reflect. Ask yourself, without looking at your goals: What did I learn? Did I get what I wanted? Did I get what I didn’t want? Sometimes you will come to the conclusion you did not reach your goal, but reached another goal. And sometimes you will even come to the conclusion that you didn’t get anything out of your project at all. The lesson you did not expect to learn here is: Never give up!

I would strongly encourage you to blog about your goals and the lessons you have learned, as it helps you to remember them. And also: apply them actively in your life!

Thanks to this blog my photography improved. I wanted to keep track of what I did, but the blog dared me to try new techniques. And because of trying new techniques, my biggest improvement might be post-processing techniques!

My dear readers, please tell me, what are your goals and what are the lessons you learned? If you have written a blog about this, do not hesitate share it in the comments!

Thank you for reading and kind regards,

Tieme

4 Comments

  1. Reply

    Such a beautiful and thoughtful post. I’m glad I came across it in the morning. You’ve echoed some of my beliefs. Self reflection is the most realistic tool one can gift onself
    It was nice to know you do this exercise at your work place as well as in personal life. Often we forget to be kind and generous during office hours. And it speaks of a big heart when you serve little more than expected, again with a perspective to learn something new within.
    Your pictures are lovely above. I love the lavender landscape. 🙂 Taking feedback is good but don’t forget to follow your heart in the process. 🙂
    Thank you for sharing your kind thoughts

    • Reply

      Hi Ankita!

      Thank you for your warm words and your time! I am glad you read it and left a message 🙂 Sorry for my delayed reply! Last week I was a bit sick, but this week I am off work and ready to reply to some messages.

      Self reflection can be a powerful tool indeed! But being honest towards yourself can be painful and difficult. It is however, needed for self improvement. Although, honestly, there are times that I don’t care about improving. That is when I am lazy 😉 But I guess being lazy can be functional too.

      Thank you for your compliment!

      And wow, so important that last comment.. Every now and then, I catch myself trying to “impress” other photographers more then that I photograph with my own vision. At those points I value what others think a bit too much. Last year was a big year for me when it comes down to personal growth, in terms that I followed my heart more than that of other people. I guess we are all human, right? 😉

      Have a great Monday!

      Warm regards,
      Tieme

      • Reply

        I hope you are feeling better by now. I know the feeling…sometimes you just wanna be easier on yourself and think not if everything u do is leading toward some goal or other 🙂

        • Reply

          Thank you Ankita, I do! And I also am enjoying some time off work and work on my page! 🙂

          Exactly, as some cheesy phrase sounds: It is about the journey, not the destination 😉

          Happy Tuesday!

          Kind regards,
          Tieme

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