Self-reflection is extremely important for self-improvement and advancement in the career. Today, people often find it difficult to find time and reflect upon the events of the past to draw conclusions, learn from mistakes, and plan for the future. Self-reflection is associated with several benefits that make an irreplaceable activity for people who aim at constant improvement. First, it is a way to revisit the events of the past with a cool mind and critical assessments of decisions. In other words, self-reflection allows everyone to look at emotions, actions, and thoughts neutrally (Habash, 2018). Second, self-reflection helps to gain a deeper understanding of past experiences by trying to understand the reasons and the consequences of actions (Habash, 2018). Finally, self-reflection allows people to understand who they really are. The practice helps to discover hidden motives and values that affect our life decisions (Habash, 2018). While self-reflection is an important practice, one should be aware not to overindulge in the matter to avoid self-judgment by the inner critic, obsessive behaviors, and depression (Habash, 2018). The present paper aims at reflecting upon the results of the Bachelor of Science in Human Services (BSHS) program.
The BSHS program was especially helpful for improving my knowledge about addictions. First, I practiced my ability to utilize various screening tools for assessing if clients have addictions. I learned to develop upon the received knowledge from the screening results, which includes creating management plans, talking to relatives, and making relevant referrals. Second, I have learned about approaches to the treatment of addictions, including evidence-based methods (cognitive-behavioral therapy, psychodynamic approach, twelve-step program), non-evidence-based approaches, and pharmacological therapies (McGovern & Carroll, 2003). Finally, I have learned about the difficulties in the treatment of addicts and possible comorbidities.
This information was the most valuable for me, as I want to be able to help people who suffer from addictions. The acquired knowledge helped me understand that I still cannot answer the question of whether addiction is a disease or it is a matter of free will. I have learned the changes in the brain that happen simultaneously with the development of addictions Garrett & Hough, 2018). However, I am not sure that addictive behavior is caused by these changes. Thus, I have gained great sympathy for people with addictions, which, I believe, will help me meet their needs and provide emotional and administrative support to them.
The program also helped me to understand the importance of human service providers. Before entering the program, I had a narrow view of the provision of human services. I believed that the primary goal of human service providers was to meet the individual needs of clients through careful needs assessment, carefully chosen interventions, and referrals to the relevant specialists. However, the BSHS program helped me acquire a broader view of the matter, as I understand that human service providers do not help only individuals. They help to develop a healthy community by enhancing the quality of life for the most vulnerable (Moffat, 2011). Such realization improved my self-esteem and determination to become a top-quality human service provider.
One of the most affecting courses I took during the program was the course concerning environmental sciences. I received a chance to measure my carbon footprint, which encouraged me to reassess my current lifestyle. I became aware of my shopping, eating, and waste management habits. Before taking the course, I believed that I was an environmentally friendly person. However, “Carbon Calculator” showed that we would need at least 1.7 Earth to sustain all the damage I make to the environment. After taking the course, I started to eat less meat and recycle most of the plastic, glass, and paper. I realized how harmful our consumeristic culture is, which helped me to become a better person.
Apart from gaining precious knowledge, the program helped me understand what is important for me by developing my personal philosophy. The program helped me understand that personal philosophy statements provide a benchmark for all human service providers that can be used as a guideline to practice. According to Mackie (2007), personal philosophies are usually blends of the most important concepts and theories. I elaborated on my understanding of who is a social service practitioner. A social service practitioner is a person who understands the ability of the human spirit to adapt, adjust, and influence the human condition. A practitioner uses the knowledge to enhance the overall well-being of a person in an ethical way. A human services practitioner assists individuals and families in overcoming their current issues. Thus, the profession is crucial for maintaining society healthy.
My personal philosophy is based on equality, social justice, and empowerment. I want to provide services with a commitment to cultural competence, which is a set of skills, values, and principles that allow optimal interactions with culturally diverse individuals (National Association of Social Workers, 2015). In summary, before entering the program, I did not realize what being a human service provider meant to me. I provided inconsistent services, which may have affected their quality. Personal philosophy helped me outline what I should do and how I should do it.
Next Steps: Case Management
I believe that the knowledge and experience I have gained through the BSHS program will help me take future steps in my career path. In particular, I will try to seek another place of work where I will be able to use my new knowledge. I plan to find a vacancy as a case manager to increase my ability to serve diverse populations. This position will help me advocate for social change in the lives of my clients and in the communities where I will work. I plan to achieve social change by reaching out to the needs of all my clients. I will try to make their voice heard. I will also help them feel important and needed in society. In the position of a case manager, I will try to reach all the populations and try to create an atmosphere of support and understanding. I believe that these endeavors will promote social change.
The BSHS program was an important step in my personal and professional development. It was another milestone that helped me look back at my life until the present moment and set a path for the future I want to follow. The program has given me knowledge, framed my personal philosophy, and helped me choose my career path. I became determined that I want to choose all my knowledge and skills to serve humanity the best I can.
Carbon calculator (n.d.). Web.
Garrett, B., & Hough, G. (2018). Brain and behavior: An introduction to behavioral neuroscience (5th ed.). Los Angeles, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.
Habash, C. (2018). What is self-reflection, and why is it important for self-improvement? Thrive Works. Web.
Mackie, P. F. E. (2007). Your philosophy of social work: Developing a personal and professional definition to guide thought and practice. Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics, 4(1), 1-11.
McGovern, M., & Carroll, K. (2003). Evidence-based practices for substance use disorders. Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 26(4), 991-1010.
Moffat, C.T. (2011). Helping those in need: Human service workers. BLS. Web.
National Association of Social Workers. (2015). Standards and indicators for cultural competence in social work practice. Web.