Reflective Essay Topics

Writing a reflective essay is extremely useful, because it allows the author to learn to clearly and correctly formulate thoughts, structure information, use basic concepts, identify causal relationships, illustrate the experience with relevant examples, and argue conclusions. We have gathered some reflective essay topics to help you come up with your own idea.

reflective essay topics

The best way to write a reflective essay is to write directly and frankly, while remaining honest with yourself. Our personal reflective essay topics can help you with this. We offer not only topics but additional information to them as well, so you will get an understanding of what you can talk about in your paper.

Good Personal Reflective Essay Topics about Relationships

  • A conversation when you became very angry. What did you say to the person? What were your feelings at that moment? If you had an opportunity to come back to that moment, would you change the way you talk?
  • A time when you were disappointed. Were you disappointed because someone said something unpleasant or did something wrong? Why did that situation disappoint you? What did you feel then?
  • A time when someone showed that he or she was proud of you. What caused this response? Did this situation make your relationships better? What did you feel then?
  • A moment when you knew you were in love. You feel unforgettable peace of mind and calm. Even just beginning to date, you feel a strange feeling, as if you have known this person for a long time, that exactly this person you were looking for all your life. You always catch yourself thinking that you feel good with him (her) and with no one else.
  • A moment when you first met a new family member. The appearance of a new member in the family is always a joyful and exciting event. Share the very first moments of the first meeting. What feelings did you have then?
  • The birth of a child or adoption of a child. A lot of young parents get a lot of tests and anxieties (how to take a tiny child in the arms, how to feed and swaddle, how to keep him or her from becoming ill, whether we bring up him or her correctly, whether we teach him or her the right things).
  • The situation when an elderly loved one lost memory through dementia. This can happen to everyone – regardless of gender, profession, and age. Senile dementia is one of the five diseases that most often takes the lives of people in an untimely manner. But not only death itself is terrible: the main horror of this disease is that it takes away a normal life and strength from patients’ relatives.
  • A time when you told someone that you were sorry. Why did you say so? Did the person feel better? What were your feelings then?
  • A time when you were embarrassed. What caused this feeling? Did it affect you? What feelings did you have at that moment?
  • A time when you lied or tried to hide a lie or faced it. In the modern world, remaining open and honest with others is imprudent and even dangerous, so people very often resort to lies. For those who are forced to tell lies, it is important to know how to behave so that deception will go unnoticed. Remember just how many times you yourself had to lie or not tell the truth at work, at home, with friends.
  • A time when you wanted something that didn’t belong to you. Why did this desire appear? Did you do anything to get what you wanted? What feelings did you have then?
  • A time when you had a conflict with a teacher, boss, or other person in authority. Conflictology – few have heard this word. However, one way or another, each of us at least once in our lives encountered a situation of conflict, and, moreover, was almost one hundred percent a participant in the conflict. Meanwhile, interpersonal conflicts are just a small fraction of all that is happening in modern society.
  • A time when your parents punished you unfairly. Were you beaten in childhood for something you didn’t do? Did your parents put you in the corner? Perhaps you still remember a case from your life that makes you cry. No wonder they say that a child’s insults will be remembered for life.
  • A time when you had to comfort someone. Did your friend or an unfamiliar person have a misfortune? Did you want to support and comfort him or her, but you did not know how best to do it? What words can be spoken, and which ones should not be? Did you render moral support to a person in a difficult situation?
  • The time when you were a child. Remember yourself as a child. What do you remember most from childhood? What childhood moments do you miss most? What did you imagine for yourself in your childhood dreams? What did your parents say about you behind your back? Think of a time when all members of the family are gathered: what are you doing at that moment?
  • A time when you had conflicts with your brothers or sisters. You have the same parents, genes, past, and sometimes even one bed and the same clothing. You were friends and rivals, you shared secrets, and were deadly enemies. At times, you felt as close as if you were Siamese twins, at times moved away from each other and felt like strangers.
  • A time when you helped someone or you got help. Why did you help? Did you always try to help people even if it is quite difficult for you? What did you feel after you helped a person?
  • A time when you met relatives you didn’t know before. What did you feel at that moment? Did you wait for it or was it unexpected for you? What was your relatives’ reaction after you met?
  • A time when you had a trip with someone else. Did you plan that trip for a long time? What was most memorable in this trip? Do you think it is better to travel on your own or to share your traveling?
  • A moment when you laugh at a crucial moment. Probably everyone has had moments where it was difficult to suppress laughter. It’s good if the situation has something to laugh at, but it’s completely different when you need to restrain laughter at the wrong time. After all, if you laugh, and not just giggle, maybe no one will notice, but if you do it loudly and with a hearty laugh, then you can accidentally offend someone.
  • A moment when you had to ask your grandparents to give you money. It used to be said that the most correct child is a grandchild. A grandfather and grandmother always find the opportunity to quietly give the grandchild money for sweets, for travel on a bus, or buying a ticket to the cinema. If the parents do not have enough money, it is the grandparents who help.
  • A moment when you won. Like any other person on the planet, I have successful periods in my life, but also sometimes the whole world is against me. Did someone write mockingly in your profile on Facebook? Did someone demand to return money for a product, over which you worked for five years, but were able to fix the issue? Write about the unpleasant story that you overcame and became a winner.
  • A time that you spent with your friends without parental supervision. If at the age of 3 to 6 years, children build their relationships mainly under the supervision of their parents, then 6 to 12 year old schoolchildren spend most of their time without parental supervision. In younger schoolchildren, friendly relations are formed, as a rule, between children of the same sex. As the connection with parents weakens, the child increasingly begins to feel the need for support from his or her friends.
  • A time when you shared a secret with someone or when someone shared a secret with you. It is very nice when you have friends with whom you can chat about everything in the world. It is absolutely natural to share secrets with them and discuss someone else. Nevertheless, there are things that can not be said even to a best friend.
  • A time when someone made you scared. What did you feel at that moment? Is it easy to scare you? Did you change your attitude to the person who scared you?

personal reflective essay topics

Reflective Essay Topics about Nature and Outdoors

  • Feet buried in the sand while watching the ocean. What do you feel? Is it the moment when you can say that you are a happy person? Do you want to share this moment with someone else?
  • Looking at a sunset. What do you feel? Do you want to share this moment with someone else? What is the best background for you when the sun is going down?
  • Looking down over the valley while sitting at the top of a hill. What do you feel? Would you want to share this moment with another person? What time of day is the most preferable for you in this situation?
  • Watching a bird flying in the sky. Nowadays, many townspeople can live their lives without noticing the flight of birds. But even in the recent past, when the connection between man and nature was closer, the flight of birds did not go unnoticed. There were people who regularly followed the wanderings of birds and tried to understand their reasons.
  • Smelling a flower. A rose is the queen of all flowers. A rose is a flower with a warm, slightly spicy, sweet smell, and was one of the first to be used by man for the production of essential oils. The aroma of the rose combines tenderness and royal splendor, beauty and inaccessibility.
  • Picking berries. Does the weather help with picking berries? Do you enjoy this activity? How many berries have you collected and will you pick berries in the future?
  • Walking in a forest. Mosquitoes, mud, a lack of WiFi – it seems that the urban “jungle” is dearer to us than a real green forest. But nature can give us something that we are unlikely to get in the city – peace and tranquility. And this is the best gift for the brain. A simple walk in the forest can help to cope with stress (lower blood levels of cortisol), relieve symptoms of depression, and improve well-being.
  • Climbing up a mountain. You rise above the clouds. You breathe in a full chest of intoxicating mountain air. You meet dawn on the highest peaks. You immerse yourself in real mountaineering and feel the pleasure of working with equipment, and teamwork in bundles.
  • Playing in the sand at the seashore. So, the long-awaited time of rest on the sea came – the time of the sun, water, and fresh air. Sand, water, and stones – everything you need for a different kind of creativity and activity is there: from drawing and modeling of sculptures, to sports games on reaction, speed, strength, or dexterity. The main thing is that you can find all this on the beach – you do not even need a pen and paper to fix the game’s account: nature has thought it all out for you.
  • Swimming in a lake. Many have felt for themselves the beneficial psychological and physical influence of swimming in the river, the sea, the lake, etc. Swimming in open reservoirs contributes not only to the improvement and strengthening of the human body, but also to the prolongation of the life. These procedures cause a lot of positive emotions.
  • Crossing a bridge and looking out over the water. What do you feel? Do you want to share this moment with someone else? Does it calm you down to watch the water?

After you choose one of our reflective writing topics, it is time to plan your essay. If you want to learn more about essay writing, you can check out our guides about writing a reflective essay that will help you. You will learn how to structure your reflective essay, how to pass the writing process successfully, and what mistakes to avoid. Also, we can help you not only with reflective essays, but with other types of essays as well. You will learn how to write papers depending on the topic, choose a plan, and develop logic of thought. You will learn what is important for writing a successful essay from our guides and reflective writing examples.