Growth comes in many phases of our lives, changing who we are in ways we never thought possible. It may be little and positive but it can also be large and heart-breaking. But how we respond to the challenges life brings us is how we grow as a person. Today, I want to focus on how we can use positive principles on a personal level to grow as an individual. Here are 5 tips to better your Self-Development journey.
5 Tips to Better your Self-Development Journey
1. It’s a Journey
Creating a lifestyle that you love will take effort and consistency in the beginning, no matter the path you wish you create and lead into. Along the way, you may notice that there will be times when nothing goes right. This is an opportunity to focus less on all of the things going wrong, and focus more on what is going right (and what you can control). Even this shift in how you respond to less than fortunate events can help you grow in a positive way.
Self-development is a process. It cannot be rushed and there are no shortcuts (no matter what the latest self-love guru says). It can be overwhelming to think of everything you want to change or improve on all at once, which will likely lead to burnout in the first few weeks.
Instead, focus on small, gradual changes that can build up. Even shifting your daily regimen to help you get closer to where you want to be by 5% still leads to change (those small wins matter- celebrate them). A slow process can lead to these habits becoming a lifestyle, rather than a temporary change.
2. Respect Yourself Along the way
Setting non-negotiables along the way can be very important. The one that most of us, I’d argue and say all of us, need to create is to respect ourselves no matter the outcome. There will be times where you stray off the path. Maybe this is for a few days, weeks, or even longer than this. These less than ideal moments are not a time of self-sabotage. This may involve negative self-talk and thoughts that are negative.
Respecting yourself along the journey, no matter how perfect it is or is not, is a non-negotiable. Be realistic with yourself and your goals, plan for obstacles and don’t ever create expectations that are unrealistic. Your mindset is your biggest asset, but it can also drive your progress along your journey. What are you telling yourself when things don’t go your way? Are you reminding yourself that everything will work out, to focus on what you can control, and to keep going? Or are you placing blame, pointing fingers, and immediately drowning your sorrows in negative stress coping methods? This matters.
3. Create an Action Plan
A goal without actionable steps to get there is just a dream. Self-development can come in many forms. Maybe you want to build your knowledge with reading, finishing courses and seeking out resources. Or maybe you want to deepen personal relationships (especially the one with yourself). Whatever it is, creating a plan for yourself that you can enjoy, sustain, and fits into yourself is the best way.
When creating goals, you want to include ones from various areas of your life. For example, choose a goal that is behavior-based, performance-based, and relationship-based. But when choosing a goal, keep it simple and small. You can always build up along the way with progress, but building down after burning out from going 1-100 is much harder. Try choosing three different types of goals, once you conquer one- build upon it. Be patient with the process, no matter how long the journey may be.
4. Reflect on What’s Working and What isn’t
If something doesn’t feel right and no matter what you do things are not getting better- it’s time to refocus. In fact, reflection is a necessary component to success (and success in improving yourself).
In the early stages of growth, your path will be rocky and full of challenges that you’ve never experienced. But self-development is a process that is full of trial and error, testing everything and anything along the way until you find what works. You learn from your failures and create strength behind the struggle.
The journey to self-growth is not parallel, it is full of ups and downs that gradually improve with time and consistency. No matter how many times you have to restart with a new goal- you are not failing because you are not giving up. You are just creating a new path for yourself that you’ve never seen before.
5. Find What & Who Aligns
Over time, your priorities and values change. It’s about the process and we learn to grow into the person we truly want to become. But what happens when the person we are now- is the opposite of who we want to be? This is likely what led you to this article, finding ways to help your self-development journey to help you align who you are now with who you deeply want to be.
There are lessons along this journey that deserve your attention. Who is there for you- supporting you along the way and not trying to change you? Are there ways you can help yourself, that you are neglecting? What in your environment may be holding you back from becoming the best version of yourself?
When answering these questions, and hopefully asking more, it’s important to be non-judgemental and open to improvement. Letting things go, and people, may be the thing you need most right now (and you should never feel guilty about this).
You are becoming the person you’ve always needed
As you can see, self-development takes time with plenty of trial and error along the way. It’s important to know when to shift your focus, create a different plan, and how to focus on the things you can control (like who you surround yourself with, how you’re treating yourself). It’s not a perfect narrow path.
The journey to growth and improvement as a person involves asking the hard questions, figuring out what is helping you in your life (and what isn’t), and understanding that it is all a learning process along the way.
I hope whatever path you are on and whoever you are trying to become is exactly what (and who) you need.
Here’s to continued growth and a whole lotta self-love along the way,
Health & Mindset Coach