What Is Personal Development?
Why It Needs to Be a Focus in Your Life
In a world where 60% of people with mental health disorders get no treatment, there's a very low level of personal development in most peoples' lives. If you're wondering what is personal development going to bring to your life, then you're at least on the right path. It's important to consider who you are and what you want out of life if you want to grow as a person.
Here are some of the most important elements of personal development to consider...
Self-Awareness Is Key
Before you start down your path to fulfillment and personal development, you need to take an inventory of sorts. You need to know who you are, what you believe in, and what dreams you're aiming to pursue. If you're aimed toward someone else's goals, you'll struggle to be happy.
The number of people who are moving toward a goal because someone else told them it was a good idea is immense. It won't lead to long-lasting happiness. Design a life that's based on who you really are if you want to develop personally.
It's much easier to stay focused on the goals that you've designed for yourself. When you're chasing a goal that feels unique and focused on who you really are, it's much easier to get fulfillment as well.
Every day, there are dozens of opportunities to learn about who you are and what you want. If you're not listening to the way that the world is reacting to what you put out there, you're missing out on some major opportunities. Tune in to the feedback and messages that you're getting and you'll find that you'll start making decisions that construct a narrative about what you really want.
Goals Must Be the Foundation
Some people think that goals are something added to your life. They have a work-life, a social life, a romantic life, and then there are goals. However, a major part of personal development is realizing that all of these things work together.
When you're making a decision about what you want to do and who you want to be around, you should filter it through your goals. Your goals aren't merely a to-do list to get you where you want to go. Your goals are a way of directing your life toward a happier and more productive future.
When you set aside goals until "everything else" is settled, you'll never get where you're looking to go. Your life will never suddenly clear up and offer you a lighter workload that offers quality time to complete your goals. That's why everything you choose to do needs to be oriented around your goals.
Some people think that doing more and working harder will get them closer to their goals. They'll work 40 hours a week and then spend another 20 hours trying to hit those goals. Real success is when you work less, not more.
Life is also more enjoyable when you're shooting for more quality time that's flexible to you, not when every moment feels rushed.
Build Focus and Efficiency
A major goal of personal development should be more clarity about your purpose. The more focused your sense of direction is, the more attention you can devote to your goals. Distraction is the enemy of reaching your goals.
Start by playing to your strengths. If you know that it's impossible for you to get work done while sitting at home, stop struggling. Find a library or quiet space to be more productive.
If your job is getting in the way, use your experience and talents to work that is better aimed at facilitating your goals. Some people work in the service industry because the flexibility and hours give the time to work on creative projects. However, if you're building a house and need to get up early to make the most of the day, your body might be too tired after being on your feet.
Don't require everything in your life to be perfect the first time around either. You need to make mistakes in order to learn. You need to slip up in order to grow.
Surround Yourself with Positive Feedback
If you want to succeed in any field, you need to be around people who make you feel like a success. It's hard to stay focused on the work ahead of you if you aren't being motivated by everyone around you. Committing to a journey is hard but it's much harder when there aren't people around you helping you feel good about it.
Willpower is important but it's much easier to maintain when the people in your circle make you feel like a success. Your friends and family should be showing up for you, helping you, and asking you about what's going on with your goals. If they're not, then you don't need to spend time asking them about theirs.
This doesn't mean you don't also need a healthy balance of criticism in your life. There should be people in your world who aren't afraid to offer constructive criticism. Their goal shouldn't be to take you down but to help you see what's missing and, most importantly, to help you overcome those obstacles.
Personal development doesn't happen in a vacuum. IT happens in a world that is big, social, and interconnected. Make sure those connections are working for you.
If you feel like your personal development plan isn't orienting you toward these types of successes, then you need to shake things up.
Defining What Is Personal Development Varies
Everyone has a different definition of what is personal development. The most important elements are having a strong goal and making sure you're directing everything toward that goal. Make sure you break up your goals into actionable items so that you can measure your development along the way.
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