WHERE TO START WITH PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT


Is there an issue in your life that you are looking to resolve? Let’s say you’re struggling with motivation, and you want some tips on how to become more motivated throughout your week. After doing some searching, you find a YouTube video or a book that offers you some great advice, and there are some tips that you can take away from it and implement in your life.

Some people will look at that one video, and then go on about their day. Other people will see some recommended videos or books listed nearby, that are related to what they just searched for, for example, a video titled ‘how to get more energy in your day’. After discovering some useful tips in the first video, you decide to watch the second video because now that you think of it, you’ve been lacking energy and this is something that you’d also like to fix.

So you watch the video and learn a couple of useful techniques for how to feel more energised throughout the day. After looking at this video, you see another recommended video that also sounds useful.

This unintended time that you spend looking at different material is the most common way for people to discover personal development. Almost nobody sets out with a direct intention to study personal development. Most people don’t even know what personal development is until they stumble upon it randomly.

As you begin researching more, you discover there are common themes than run between seemingly unrelated topics. Pursuits like starting a business and losing weight require a lot of the same skills and mindsets to achieve success. When you discover these connections, you begin to gain a big picture understanding of what personal development is and how it works.

The Initial Stages

So let’s say you’re just starting out with personal development and you stumble across this blog randomly. You have an area in your life that you want to work on, or a problem that you want to fix. My advice is to spend some time looking at all the different topics that personal development coves, discovering areas in your life that are important to you, and discovering areas that you can improve and how to improve them. I cover six different categories of personal development: health and fitness, productivity, emotions, confidence, motivation, and the foundational principles of personal development.

I spent the first couple of years learning about all the areas of my life that I wanted to improve in, and I was so interested in watching new videos, reading new books, to find out what mindset and practical changes were recommended for all the different areas.

Practical Application

Taking the theory and implementing in your own life is where the results come from though. I recommend picking one area that you want to most urgently improve, and begin deliberately working on that area. While you’re working on that one area, absorb as much material from all the different topics that personal development covers.

Losing weight might be your primary focus, but I recommend reading on topics like relationships, confidence, productivity and so on. The deliberate practice gives you something tangible to be working on, whilst exploring loads of personal development material gives you a big picture understanding. It’s crucial to build a big picture understanding because this is what inspires you.

The Big Picture

The big picture understanding gives you a vision of what’s possible for you to achieve in your life. Without this, you’ll have no idea what’s possible for you. Even if you read articles about all the amazing things that are possible for you, like starting your dream business, finding your dream partner, you still have no idea of how fulfilled you can become.

You don’t really know what you authentically want from life until you’ve spent time researching all these different topics and expanding your mind. You probably feel like you know what you want out of life, like travelling the world or having lots of money, but these goals are very ordinary. Acquiring these goals is good, but personal development is about reaching extraordinary goals. Extraordinary goals are the things that you individually are the most passionate about, things that make you feel alive and excited every day. But the trouble is, you don’t know what these goals are yet.

Personal Development Can Be Counter-Intuitive

Personal development can be counterintuitive sometimes. If you’re passionate about something, you would assume that these passions would be glaringly obvious, and you should just already know what they are. But that’s not the way it works. You have a lot of beliefs and values that are unique, but they’re very subtle, and they mostly get drowned out by society, by the media and by your life commitments like school and work.

It took me five years to find my passion and life purpose. I wasn’t actively searching for it the whole time, but I spent a good amount of time contemplating what it could be. But without doing this personal development work, I never would have found it. This is why it’s crucial to expand your knowledge as much as possible, you’ll find out who you authentically are.

The benefit of researching topics like relationships, money, and productivity is that you’ll pick up a lot of skills and ideas that will help to boost your results in whatever area you are currently trying to improve. For example, eating healthy will automatically adjust a lot of other bad habits in your life without you having to focus on them.

The Intermediate Level

If you’re already familiar with personal development, then you might have a good overview of the topics covered. Whether you have made these improvements happen in your own life yet or not, you understand some skills required to make positive changes. Most importantly, you buy into the personal development idea and that it’s possible to make these improvements.

Now is the time to make these changes happen for you. Furthermore, it’s time to create a passionate life that’s full of purpose and excitement that I’ve talked about above. I cover a range of topics that are filled with information and practical steps. The same recommendation applies to you, start by focusing on one area of your life whilst continuing to take in as much material as possible. If you commit to putting in the practice, you’ll have all the resources necessary to create the life that you want.

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