“You are essentially who you create yourself to be and all that occurs in your life is the result of your own making.” – Stephen Richards
What is personal development? By definition on Wikipedia, it consists of activities that develop a person’s capabilities and potential. To me, personal development is a conscious choice to continue learning about yourself, learning about the world, and evolving. There is so much that we know, but even more that we don’t know. Life is a journey filled with challenges and beautiful moments, and luckily most of us are given the opportunity and right to an education. Education is a privilege and a blessing. A person who stops learning is a person who stays stagnant. I truly believe that involving yourself in personal development is one of the best things you can do for your life, especially because of the complex world that we live in.
I am Alexia, the social media specialist here at NutraChamps. I am also a big believer in personal growth and personal development. For years I have stepped out of my comfort zone and made choices to learn about myself in big and small ways, that journey still continues to this day. To be honest, I don’t think that the journey will ever end. I believe we have the power to create the lives we want. We have the ability to get the things we dream about and it all begins and ends with our mindset and our ability to keep learning about ourselves. We may think we have ourselves completely figured out, but let me tell you, personal development reveals thousands of layers you never knew you had. Through personal development you discover why you are the way you are, your strengths, areas you need to improve, and you get closer to finding your true purpose.
Personal development looks different for all of us! Some people develop themselves by reading more, others do so by traveling more. Personal development doesn’t have to be a big, expensive thing. There are many small habits you can form starting today that will help you grow, learn, and better yourself! There is nothing more rewarding than working on yourself and looking back to see how far you’ve come. If you’re interested in taking your personal development to the next level, want some tips on what different forms of personal development can look like, or want to start on a path of growth, then keep on reading.
Here are 7 ways you can make personal development more of a priority in your life:
1. Reading more books:
There are numerous reasons as to why immersing yourself in a good book is so benefical for your health and your growth. There are thousands of books available on almost any topic you can think of, from how to break bad habits, to how to become more confident, and so on. There is something very special about the act of reading that allows us to strengthen our memory, reflect on our lives, and learn more about ourselves. When it comes to books related to personal development, I have tons of recommendations I could give you. Here are just a few that can help you get started: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson. There are plenty more when that came from and what I love doing is Googling and looking at reviews before choosing my next read to see if it resonates with something I want to improve on.
2. Face your fears:
Nothing will help you grow more than stepping out of your comfort zone and facing your fears. I’m not saying that you should go jump out a plane and skydive tomorrow or anything, but taking small steps towards doing more things that scare you will help you become even more resilient. Nothing good comes out of the comfort zone, but so much strength and opportunity to show up as a better version of yourself comes from taking chances, risks, and facing some of your fears head on.
3. Ask for constructive criticsm or feedback:
Criticism…many of us cringe at the thought of it. For most of my life, I have definitely been one of those people. I’ve learned along the way that I am a people pleaser and criticsm has always meant that I am not good enough. I now realize this is not true and criticsm is an excellent opportunity to improve. The people who are willing enough to usually give us feedback or constructive criticsm are usually the one’s who care about seeing us succeed. If you can have an open mind about criticsm, you will find that it’s one of the most beneficial ways to grow. If you can, I highly recommend you start asking people in your life for more constructive criticsm and how you can do better. Ask colleagues at work, family members, or your partner as a start! If you can control the need to be defensive, this can actually be a fantastic tool to learn about how you show up for others.
This is such an underrated yet super important life skill. With the world we live in now, it’s now more about who you know and not what you know. Creating a strong network of people in your life is a practice that takes off, but one that truly pays off, especially when it comes to opening doors to new opportunities. Since we’re still in the middle of a pandemic, going to network events is sometimes not a possibility. Luckily, we have tons of opportunity to network online through social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook groups, Instagram, webinars, online seminars, and classes or courses. If you make an effort to introduce yourself to more and more people, especially within communities you’d like to be apart of, you’ll find that this is an incredible life skill.
5. Learn to love your own company:
This personal development tip is pretty ironic after just mentioning the power of networking but let me tell you, this tip is key! As I’ve gotten older, I have realized there is so much power in actually learning to love your own company and solitutde. If you can be comfortable with being in your own company, that is a truly beautiful thing. The person you are going to spend the most time in your life with is you, so why not make it time you value. By actually carving out time during your busy week to just be with yourself and workout, cook, read, write, or anything that allows you to be present in your own company, this will help you feel more unconditional love, confidence, and happiness.
6. Listen to podcasts or audiobooks:
Learning by listening has never been easier! With podcasts and audiobooks available at our fingertips, there is so much opportunity to educate ourselves while doing daily tasks. I’ve found that listening to a podcast or audiobook while I’m at the gym is a great way to pass the time. Podcasts are awesome because they’re authentic, raw, and unfiltered. Audiobooks are more structured in nature but an amazing way to get through a book if you don’t have the time to sit and read.
7. Be in important conversations:
Confrontation isn’t always easy, but it’s definitely essential for personal development and growth. Sometimes the hardest conversations are the most important ones we need to have. If you’ve been putting off telling someone how you feel, raising a concern you care about at work, or apologizing to someone you need to make up with, this is your sign to get it done. Being inside these important conversations will help transform your communication within your relationships.
As I mentioned, personal development doesn’t have to be a series of huge transitions or big steps. Personal development can be taking one step a day to do something extra that betters you, makes you happier, educates you, and enriches your life. I hope that you found some of these tips useful and help you to continue becoming all that you are meant to be, not that there is anything wrong with the way you are now!