In Emotional Intelligence/ Well-Being Blog

The First Steps of Personal Development

what is personal development

The acts of self-consciousness and self-control go hand in hand, some may call it Emotional Intelligence, but the fact is that when we are self-aware, we are better able to exhibit self-control and compassion for others.

What Is Self-Awareness?

There are many people out there that are not self-aware or conscious of themselves, you’ve probably met a few(!), they are not in control of their emotions and actions. Being self-aware is important as it can affect our personal development, mental maturity, and progression through life. It is crucial that we are able to develop these skills, to be aware of all that we do and say and know that these things will affect circumstances as well. Being self-conscious is not always a bad thing as we like to think but if we relate it to being self-aware, we see can achieve benefits in our personal development.

If we have self-awareness, it is less likely that we will act on impulse. It is more likely the case that we will be ready and able to assess a situation properly and show self-control in deciding how to approach the situation. The self-awareness that we possess will therefore directly affect our self-control. It is crucial to our personal growth that we are constantly learning to become self-aware people in order to control our emotions and actions. This can be done in many ways, but these depend on the will power of the individual involved and the desire to take control of their lives.

Some of the ways to move the process to self-awareness and self-control along include the need for professional assistance or giving yourself personal goals. There are many personal development plans that offer techniques to assist in this process, including us, and they are a great place to start especially if you do not have the time or budget compared to high-end psychologists and the like.  It is essential that you give yourself a target, otherwise unless you are actively engaged, i.e. enrolled in a class, then you might not be motivated enough to ‘self-help’. In these cases, a personal development plan can be a great starting point to progress your personal growth skills.

If we do have some self-control, then it is good to try the other option of working on self-awareness and personal development on our own. Meditation and Mindfulness. Out of respect of the Heartfulness Organisation, rather than use ‘Heartfulness’, I use the term ‘being heartful’. So why not use the term Mindfulness are great ways in which you can explore the ‘self’, our emotions, feelings, and the things that we hide away in our psyche.  Meditation and Mindfulness both build greater internal and external awareness and in turn, this builds increased self-control.

Meditation has numerous benefits to its users; it has been reputed to be of assistance in stress relief and the prevention of more serious illnesses such as heart disease and many more. The relaxing effect of meditation and the exploration into self are able to translate to a better awareness overall and better self-control. Meditation provides a space for personal growth and answers the need to understand who we really are.

But with meditation, it can take a while to reap benefits and there are often persons that will become bored with the process and not give the method the required time to assist them. Meditation and Mindfulness are not a race – but actually a practice, something that you do every day and shouldn’t be seen as an overnight fix by any means and can take months and years of dedication for you to achieve all the results. While there are challenges to start a meditation and mindfulness practice, it is one of the best ways to grasp control of self and become more self-aware.

How to Start With Personal Development

Self-help and personal development are aspects that many individuals lack. For many, getting up every day means going to work, coming home tired enough to fall into bed, and doing it all over again the next day. Your days off include laundry, cleaning, cooking, and trying to do something meaningful with the kids. While this is the life that many people live, it is not a life that is good in quality. And, while that paycheck is a great asset, it is not what is going to provide you with a life to look back on with a smile. Improve your life through personal development, and you and your family will have improved mental health and stronger relationships.

Tips For Improving Your Life Through Personal Development

Get A Life! You have heard the saying, now put it to use. While you may think it is necessary to work long hours but ask your children if they would rather see you more or have the money, more than likely they will choose you. Cut back on your demanding job and find time to invest in your family. Their values will improve, your relationship will improve, and overall your mental health will increase.

Personal development means looking hard at your ‘self’. While it is not easy to do, you’ll need to face your faults and find ways to improve them. Find out what you hate or dislike about yourself and then work on improving these aspects. Don’t like the way you treat people? Then change it. Don’t like the attitude that you have at work? Don’t be judgemental, there are reasons why you do this but do address them, and change for the better. Also, and this is an important part, add things into your life that are worth being happy about.

Time for you or ‘Me Time’. It is important to spend quality time doing things that you personally enjoy doing. Want to get away for a bit? Then take a walk after dinner and leave your spouse with the kids. A ten-minute break from everyone is the time you can use to explore your own self and to learn about who you are and where your life is heading.

When you take the time to learn about yourself and to develop your relationships, your personal development will allow you to become the person that you want to be.


Personal Development Goals

1. Be Present

Live in the now. The past is gone. You can never go back and make it right. You can never re-live a life that was yesterday. Live positively in the present moment, no matter what is occurring. It is All right and perfect. Do not look ahead and dread what may come. Our mind creates a lot of chatter and makes us afraid in order to keep us safe. Tell your mind “Thanks for sharing” and affirm “I am here, I am present”. You are always at choice and you know how to make this day beautiful.

2. Reconnect with Nature

Sit on the lawn or next to a tree. Feel the pulse of the earth, the grandeur of the sky, the coolness of the breeze on your face, or the warmth of the sun on your face. Smile at nature, say hello to the bugs, and all the animals you meet. Take a walk in a park or hike on a trail.

3. Exercise

Daily exercise gives you a break from your mind chatter, helps pump your heart, circulates your blood, clears toxins from your body, charges you with energy, and has many other benefits. Choose an activity that is fun and mix it up. Do walking one day and yoga another day. Take a Tai Chi class and meet new people. The list of possibilities is endless.

4. Spirituality

Recognize and know you are important and unique. Meditate, or sit quietly, and be in the moment. Read books that are uplifting and have positive messages. Give thanks for your health, your home, your friends, all the joy and happiness in your life and all the good that surrounds you.

5. Forgiveness

It is time to let it go. Forgive all parts of yourself to be whole and perfect. Forgive yourself for any past mistakes or shortcomings; forgive the child within for being afraid; forgive the teenager that spoke words of anger; forgive the young adult for not being a risk-taker. Forgive others in the past. Forgive your parents, your siblings, and relatives. Let go of all grudges. Forgiveness is about coming to peace within yourself.

6. Bubble Bath

Give yourself permission to relax and savor quiet times. Read a book for fun. Spend that extra money and get a massage or a facial. Do something selfish for yourself.

7. Nutrition

Listen to your body. Feed it good nutritious food. Take a high-quality multi-vitamin or a liquid supplement. Most health challenges can be reduced or eliminated with a dietary supplement.

8. Let Go of Judgement

Give up judgment and give up blame. Never speak critically of others or yourself. Speak words of encouragement to yourself and everyone you meet. Accept everyone for who they are and embrace their differences.

9. Service to Others

Reach out and lend a hand to a friend in need. Offer unconditional service to others. Be a great listener and really listen to people when they speak. Find ways to help others to lift their spirits and help lessen their burdens.

10. Love

Love yourself and use positive words of encouragement. Compliment strangers and make others smile. Speak from a loving heart and shine within.

Photo by Autumn Goodman on Unsplash

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