Personal development is when you actively take part in things that help to improve various aspects of your life. Many of us want to create wealth, have good health in abundance, feel happy and secure on our chosen life path, and know that we have realised our dreams and are living up to our full potential.
When we feel as though we are not living our best and truest lives, we begin to suffer greatly and our need to make personal improvements weighs heavily upon us. This is where personal development steps in. When we consciously decide that we want to be better tomorrow than we are today, we would usually pick an area of our life, sometimes a few areas, and begin to develop and strengthen them. For many people, they are not entirely sure what aspect of their life they want to improve, and so they hire a Life Coach to help facilitate this.
What areas can I improve on?
There are many different areas where we need total fulfillment and for many of us, we may be lacking in more than one area, especially if we have not made any conscious effort to monitor where we are in life. An example could be employability - maybe you want a new job or to change your career path. Perhaps you want to be considered for promotions or growth within your current role? If you feel as though this is a weak area of your life then you would usually start here and branch out.
It is common for an individual to start with one area and quickly notice other areas that may be unfulfilled. This is completely normal and in some respect, a really good thing! It means you are also developing your awareness! There are also likely to be many cross-overs in the areas of your life, again this is very normal for most people.
Here is a list of core areas that you may want to take into consideration when thinking about your personal development.
Quality of life
Developing skills and talents.
How to get started with personal development
First, you will need to create your own personal development plan. This will provide you with the framework that will help you to identify your strengths and weaknesses and build an action plan and set targets/goals to work towards. Your plan will be your guide and allow you to see where you need to optimise and grow existing skills and strengths and what areas need improvement.
When you break things down, it allows you to see more clearly and in which direction you need to move. For example, imagine you are playing a game of chess, you are able to see the board and pieces in their entirety. You see all the spaces, what moves will be easier and any obstacles in your way. However if you were to look at the game through the eyes of a chess piece, the capacity of what you can see and in which way to move will be reduced dramatically! Having a personal development plan is like stepping out of your current space and viewing your lifestyle and thoughts from an outside perspective. It allows you to see a wider landscape and path forwards.
You know yourself better than anyone. You know what your capabilities are and the places in which you tend to struggle. You know what is important to you, what matters most, and what does not. You are your own leader, and in order for you to improve and respond effectively to those around you, you will need to establish your own personal vision and development forwards.
Setting your own goals
When it comes to creating your own personal development plan, it is crucial that you base the entire plan on your own specific wants, needs, and attributes. It is of no use to anyone for you to create a plan based upon what someone else thinks is right for you. Only you have this true information and you will only excel in your own truth.
Have a plan based upon your ideal future, the future based on your ambitions, both short-term and long-term desires. Of course, a plan should not only detail the end goals, but it also needs to factor in any potential obstacles you might face, and a clear understanding of how you propose to overcome them. Preparation is a friend of success and just to be clear, success is defined by you and whether your life is fulfilled in the way that YOU want it to be.
We have discussed that your goals need to be true to you, and in addition to this, they need to be very clear and realistic. Break the goal(s) down to markers and set a time-frame in which you want to achieve each phase - be sure to keep track as you go! Reward yourself each time you reach a marker, it is so important for you to acknowledge your achievements.
How long does personal development take?
In truth, personal development is a lifelong process. As you go through your years, you will always want to improve various areas of your life. It is human nature to want to be the very best version of yourself that you possibly can be. However, each goal you set can take between 6 weeks and 6 months plus, depending on what it is you want to achieve and how much time and energy you are willing to invest in it. Positive life choices and decisions about your future are required in order for you to successfully reach personal empowerment. As a human being, you will constantly, throughout your life learn and evolve and that truly is a beautiful thing. Embrace your life purpose and start your own personal development journey today.
If you want to hire a coach to support you with your plan and provide you with accountability and thought-provoking questions then check out our coaching page here.
Practical ways to improve your personal development
Here are a few practical ways for you to start your personal development journey. In addition to this, you may also find coaching extremely valuable. Whatever your 'thing' is, find it and start using it!
Find a Mentor
Learn something through study (online courses or local community groups)
Create new healthy habits/routines
Learn a new language
Find a new hobby
Expand your communications/Join networking events
Try different types of therapies (even the ones you think won't help you)
Listen to podcasts/audiobooks
Join a Mastermind group