Mama’s everywhere gather around because I have a harsh truth to share. The Benefits of personal development come from a lifelong journey. Yup. There is no fast-track, no one-time-deal, not even a buy-one-get-one-free option to self-growth. It’s a commitment to yourself for life, full stop.
But don’t despair! Just because it’s a journey doesn’t mean it has to be painful or drag on and on (and on). It doesn’t have to be boring, or tedious. It doesn’t have to be something you pencil in (just to erase the evidence it never happened later).
Nope, absolutely none of that. Because I have another little secret. Shh, it’s just for you…
Personal development is a PERSONAL experience.Personal development is a PERSONAL experience. Click To Tweet
As in, it’s just for YOU and no one else.
What the heck is personal development?
This is such a broad, non-specific question that I’m forced to give you a broad, non-specific answer. Personal development is simply activities and experiences that improve or create skills or bring awareness of talents (to develop these things if you will). Non-specific enough for you?
Let’s break it down a little. Development: to refine, to cause growth, to improve existing resources (or ideas), to advance or mature.
Now apply these to yourself. IE:
Cause growth in yourself.
Improve your existing (talents, potential, skills, etc.).
That’s essentially it. Personal development is the process of changing something about yourself. WHAT you change depends entirely on you.
What are the areas of personal development?
There are many different areas of personal development, and you can break them down further into additional ranges but instead of categorizing them let me just list some heavy hitters and what personal development in those areas may look like:
- Professional: oral or written communication, analytical or research skills, problem-solving, or specific training or certifications related to professions such as PMP, CPAP, SQL Server, Excel, bookkeeping, etc.
- Physical: join a gym, get a personal trainer, take a pilates class, do circuit training at home, yoga before bed, become certified nutritionist, change your dieting lifestyle (IE: stop dieting, starting eating fresh food instead of processed, etc.), work with appropriate doctors to improve physical ailments, etc.
- Mental: attend therapy, join a support group or club, focus on self-care, meditate, memory games, find a life coach, start a journal, seek treatment for conditions or disorders, find connections, practice law of attraction techniques, define core values, etc.
- Spiritual: use yoga or meditation to center yourself, attend a spiritual retreat, join a church or faith you feel compelled to, join a spiritual or church group, read spiritual books, attend prayer groups, start a journal, etc.
- Social: join a club, attend a hobby meetup, go to singles (or couple) events, go on a solo cruise, start a walking group, introduce yourself to someone you’d like to know, compliment strangers, small acts of kindness, attend networking events or work social functions, volunteer, etc.
- Hobby: join a club or team, attend a hobby meetup, take a class, try a new hobby, practice a current hobby, teach others your hobby, read a book, write an article, become certified, etc.
11 benefits of personal development
So let’s get onto the important stuff, why is self-improvement so darn important for everyone? What are the benefits of personal development? Why should it be a priority?
- HAPPINESS: Does happiness ring a bell? That emotion when you find genuine joy in a moment? Yup. It’s that simple. Taking time to improve yourself has that effect on you. Even when things inevitably don’t go as planned, because you have a goal in mind and are consistently working towards it, it leaves you feeling HAPPY. That said, consistency is key here! Don’t work on yourself sporadically and wonder why you’re not Ms. Positive all the time! Need a little help? In Pursuit of Joy will get you there in 30 days or less!
- CHANGE: When you work towards things, things begin to change. It’s simple, working towards a goal means each day you are one step closer to said goal which means each day begins to look at a little different as you get closer and closer to achieving it. This is the best type of change there is! It’s an exciting time full of wonder and pride!
- SELF-PRIDE: Speaking of pride, you are accomplishing great things! You are taking time for YOURSELF and striving to change the relationship you have with yourself. That is beautiful and you should be PROUD of what you are doing!
- LEARNING: The majority of personal development is simply learning. Learning things about yourself, about your hidden talents, your deepest dreams, your secret aspirations, how to achieve the aforementioned, how to move forward in your life, how to accomplish amazing feats and everything in-between. Your knowledge will come from exciting new adventures, eye-opening experiences, books and articles, mentors in all shapes and sizes, and from both failures and successes!
- INFORMED: This may seem redundant but hear me out. To learn something is a verb, it’s an action you are taking. Being informed is an adjective, you have learned something which makes you educated and full of knowledge on a subject. This literally means you are smarter, grounded in facts, and aware enough to make educated decisions. Now THAT is something to be proud of.
- HEALTHIER: When you strive to change something about yourself for the better, the rest of you follows suit. By taking a yoga class for physical health you become mindful of your existence and gain mental health, along with making friends in the class for social health. This self-awareness leads to realizing other areas of your life that may need development as well!
- SELF-AWARENESS: And speaking of self-awareness, the more you practice personal development, the more openminded and self-aware you become. This is key because it opens your eyes to other areas that may need improvement and allow you to properly focus your personal growth plan to change as YOU change!
- RELATIONSHIPS IMPROVE: Personal development makes you a more well-rounded person, a more insightful and better friend and a member of society. People like to surround themselves with people who develop themselves because it inspires them to develop as well. You’ll quickly find your relationships begin to improve, first because people who like to develop themselves tend to hang out together, secondly because people who don’t like to improve themselves tend to stay away from those that do because it makes them feel bad.
- SENSE OF PURPOSE: It’s no wonder at this point that one of the biggest benefits of personal development is simply higher self-esteem. With all the benefits we’ve already mentioned, this is obvious. But it helps to find and understand your sense of purpose as well. The more you work to develop yourself, the more confident you feel in your decisions, the more focused you become on your goals, and the more aware you become of having a sense of purpose in your life.f
- ACHIEVE GOALS: When you set your mind to a goal with a clear vision, you begin to work towards that vision with every choice you make. Personal development helps you take the right steps toward that goal making sure you start achieving them!
- FINANCIAL SUCCESS: Speaking of achieving goals…people who constantly develop themselves find their goals often center around career or financial success. So when achieving said goals, tend to have better finances and dream jobs!
Why do mamas have a hard time finding time for self-improvement?
In short, it’s how we spend our time. Physically, mentally, and emotionally we are rewired when we become parents. A screaming newborn at 2 AM has that effect on us like it or not. You could argue that dads have it the same, and I won’t disagree. This information is relevant to all parents but my blog focuses on mama’s so that is who I will continue to speak to, no disrespect intended!
Back to the point, what makes a parents’ time different than a non-parent? Think about this, a single woman has only herself to consider when she spreads her time over responsibilities (work, home, friends and family, hobbies, physical health, mental health, etc.). Meaning she can potentially divide that time (almost) evenly if she so-wanted, with only a few stronger responsibilities requiring additional time (IE: work).
A non-single (IE: in some sort of relationship) woman has to share this time now. Work may be non-negotiable, but social time is suddenly split between friends, family, and your significant other. If you share a home, then home responsibilities may be split up, but if you don’t then this may take a hit. Suddenly hobbies, mental health, etc. may be on the back burner or simply find themselves fit in sporadically instead of equally.
A woman with a child has a whole new dimension of scheduling. If they have a significant other, then consider the above scenario but begin including kids’ responsibilities as well. Suddenly is time with friends even important? What hobbies? Working out – what’s that? I can’t even remember what mental health means.
Starting to see the correlation between time and personal development yet? Without ample time to do it, personal development seems kind of unimportant next to everything else.
Want more? Stay tuned for my personal development series:
Habits to Adopt to Live Your Best Life
Why You Need to Leave Your Comfort Zone to Grow, and How in 3 Easy Steps!
How to Create a Personal Development Plan
KPI’s of Self-Improvement
In the meantime, don’t forget to check out:
How to Find Your Passion in 5 Minutes or Less!
The ugly Truth About Avoiding Responsibilities: How to Stop Procrastinating
Life Boundaries Protect Time and Energy, Work-Life Balance Protects the Status Quo
Discover Your Personal Core Values
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