he most successful individuals place great importance to continuously achieve personal growth and development. Despite already being at the pinnacle of their career, they still make the time in their busy schedule to endlessly push themselves out of the comfort zones and to unlock even more of their inner potential.
So what does personal growth mean? It is a lifelong process of psychological, physical, social and spiritual development. It is an active process of learning and developing new skills long after one has completed any formal education.
The beauty of personal growth lies in its unlimited possibility — you can learn across many fields that pique your interest and go as deep as you would like to. And by continuously growing, you’re set on the path of living an extraordinary and fulfilled life.
It is never too late if you have just come across the idea of personal growth. Now is definitely a good time to start!
Taking the first step is always the hardest part of the process, but persevering is definitely harder. But do not worry, we have got you covered.
Discover the 8 simple tips to keep the momentum going for you to continuously achieve personal growth:
1. Grow at Your Own Pace at Something You’re Passionate About
Along with the rise of smartphones, social media platforms have been a staple in our daily lives. Stories of success, while inspiring at times, when served in a disproportionately higher frequency than stories about the ongoing hardship of climbing to the job, can leave even the better of us feeling rather inadequate. Sooner or later, you tend to compare yourself and start to question your current life’s path.
But the thing is, every journey is not the same for everyone. As cliché as it may sound, you need to stop comparing and start appreciating your individual journey. Chart out a path that aligns with your personal values and needs.
To begin, think of your interests and passions. Try to recall your childhood memories. What did you love to do as a child? Bill Gates once said that you’re likely to excel at something that you were obsessed with when you were 12 – 18 years old.
If nothing stands out, then think of what sparks joy in your life now? What are the things you could talk about for hours?
For example, if you have been watching foreign movies for a while, maybe it is time to learn the language. Imagine how rewarding it will be when you are finally able to sit through a movie and ditch the subtitles.
“Enlightenment must come little by little – otherwise it would overwhelm.” – Idries Shah
Once you have found your passion, you must be patient. Remember that it is okay to take it slow and not rush the process. It may seem to you that everyone else except you is moving forward at the speed of light, that’s probably just a mere illusion. Even if it is true, do not feel demotivated and be brave to grow at your own pace.
2. Make Use of Curiosity to Cultivate Soft Skills
Soft skills are just as important as hard skills. In fact, you need to cultivate soft skills not only to shine at your workplace, but also to become a better human being.
Let us consider empathy, for example, which is considered one of the most important soft skills to have at the workplace and in life. Empathy is commonly associated with having similar past experiences. Award-winning graphic novelist Gene Luen Yang agrees that empathy for others can come from having experienced something similar.
But how do we empathize even with the lack of experience?
The answer is to be curious of everything! The next time that someone tells you that they can no longer cope with something, before you formulate your response, be curious and put yourself in their situation.
Suppose that you are a breadwinner husband and wonder why your stay-at-home wife whines so much about how tired she is at the end of the day. Perhaps you can volunteer to substitute her role during the weekend. You’d be surprised of how your view may dramatically change.
Being curious does not only cultivate your empathy but also enhance your decision-making skills, while at the same time pave the way for your own personal growth.
3. Kaizen Approach: Aim for 1% Progress, Not Perfection
Personal growth is a lifelong process. Sure, being a perfectionist to a certain extent may have its place, but overdoing it and you may risk doing a disservice to yourself and the people around you, as in the case of the creative genius, Steve Jobs.
If you are plagued with striving for perfectionism, it is better to shift your focus on the progress that you’ve made, rather than perfection, in order to avoid feeling discouraged. In fact, perfectionism can have serious adverse effects on your mental health.
To give you an idea, pretend that you are into arts and decide to try calligraphy. You’d realize that it is so much harder than it looks once you’d pick up the pen. Suddenly, your goal of achieving the mastery level that you’d once dreamed of seems too daunting of a task…and you may be tempted to throw in the towel.