Qualifying in 1987 I have worked as a youth and community worker for 12 years and since then as a lecturer training new workers within higher education. Throughout I have been interested in the process by which we become professional practitioners, specifically reflective practice. Whilst elsewhere practitioners/researchers describe and explore stages of development in, and levels of, reflective practice, in this paper I explore students reactions and responses to the process, best characterised as a ‘backlash' both to the notion and their experience of it. The paper follows my own process of reflective practice, an exploration of ‘calling' and ‘faith', ideas stimulated from listening to students. The process shows my inquiry into the roots of the backlash through an analysis of what students are asked to do within the process of reflective practice and stages of development of faith in it as a guiding principle to their work. This enabled me to develop a broader sense of the student reactions to the process of reflective practice and successfully change my own practice.