I’ve sometimes been asked just how we can get on to the journey of Personal and (eventually) Professional Development.
Apart from learning and improving skills that help us to take up the mantle of professional responsibilities, how do we begin? What are the preparations we need to make at a personal level in order to begin this journey ?
For developing our Personal Development Skills, the comprehension of the some vital Personal Skills helps.
1) Taking care of our Physical and Emotional Well being
Many of us may believe that we do all that we need to keep ourselves well but do we do enough for maintaining our physical and emotional well being?
Do we spend some “me’ time during the day? We may lead hectic professional and personal lives, but it is critical we enhance our enjoyment of our day by spending some valuable ‘me’ time. Read , go for a walk, visit the gym, meet up with a friend, watch a movie…do something that gives you pleasure. Pleasure that is not solely dependent on another’s convenience but that you can enjoy in guilt free harmony!
2) Discover who you are
Ask yourself what are the leisure activities that give you happiness along with personal fulfillment? If you enjoy volunteering, join a group that promotes the improvement of the society that we live in. If you pondered about learning an instrument, find out your aptitude for it – does the music resonate with you and make you wish to learn it? If yes, go for it. Discover yourself. In the frantic pace of our life, we often forget to discover who we are while getting to know people around us.
3) Being Self Motivated – be generous with your appreciation but do not expect appreciation even from the closest people in your life.
Many of us make this huge mistake of relying on appreciation from others. Whether it is family or close friends, allow people the freedom whether to appreciate your work or what you do. Should they merely like to offer suggestions or criticize all the time, don’t allow it to rattle you. Select the suggestions and feedback you hear carefully. Always base it on their constructive element alone, not purely on the relationship you have with the person who gives it.
Work continuously on ways to improve, learn and become better at what you and not base it on the encouragement or accolades you receive from people around you.
4) Communication Skills – Join Toastmasters
As a member of Toastmasters for the last 12 years, I can vouch for the positive energy and compassion the wonderful organization has enabled me to experience. Learning communication and leadership skills in a positive and energetic club environment not only improves you but makes you a better member of society. Best of all, you get to know many inspiring, accomplished and friendly people.
5) Time Management
Time indeed waits for no one but we certainly can make the best of the time we have.
Use it wisely and well. Prioritize your day and the tasks you need to complete everyday including the time you spend with your dear family and work. Keeping a strict tab on the time you wish to give for socializing and on social networks helps too.
6) Stress Management
We may all have ways to relieve stress, but have you thought of relieving stress by being your own best friend? It may sound ridiculous but as someone who has benefited from this concept, I can suggest this technique as a way of relieving stress. Our family, our closest friends are there in our life but why seek solace in them during moments of stress or distress from everyday activities? Why depend on them to provide you with the relief when you can successfully talk to yourself out of the stress you experience. Read, learn and observe ways you can be your friend, counselor and number one emotional support.
Besides by doing this, you become a more positive and cheerful person to be with – less reasons to be anxious and be on a complaining/negative mode when you are with anybody.
The other day, I was pondering over a matter that gave me two options. I realized that the best option needs to be based on how it would benefit me and the situation. It then dawned to me how much we rely on others to make personal decisions for us. If I had spoken to a friend or a professional regarding my predicament, this is the same suggestion that they would have suggested to me as a solution to the issue.
While matters that require professional expertise or guidance are best sought from professionals who are experts in their field, general matters that relate to your personal life and emotional tranquility can greatly be supported by your objective understanding of the situation you face.
7) Create your Ideal Life
Work on creating your ideal life. The life that gives you a sense of fulfillment and happiness, keeping in mind the respect you need to give your family and dear ones.
8) Treat Yourself Well
Educate, guide, support and encourage yourself to develop yourself into what you want to become.
Seek guidance, support and wisdom from the experts whenever required but the journey is one that you alone will make and the risks are one that you alone will face in your journey of Personal and Professional Development.
Have the courage and determination to take charge and control of what you want to be and how you will reach were you want to be.