As strange as it sounds, many people feel like they’ve failed in their personal development. They feel the need to recover from it in order to successfully move on. Since I personally don’t believe you can fail with your personal development, I thought an article explaining my point of view on such matters might actually help.
Personal development is a process, not an event
Before I talk about anything else, let me make a statement: personal development is a life-long process, not an event. Thus, you can’t miss it and never get another chance to experience it – a chance to improve something about yourself is always around.
Once started with personal development, you will feel the urge and need to develop yourself mentally, emotionally and spiritually on a constant basis.
After you see the first results of self-improvement, you will not be able to drop it – you will get hooked up and will use every opportunity to improve something else about yourself.
There is no such thing as failure
I like this quote by Anthony Robbins a lot. In full, it goes like this:
“There is no such thing as failure. There are only results.“
Even more so with personal development: you can’t, and you won’t fail, if you have the right attitude.
If you already read books or listen to audio materials on personal development, chances are that you’ve isolated a few areas of yourself which need improvement. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you, but it clearly shows your dedication to pushing the bar even higher for yourself.
Well, here’s some good news for you: becoming aware of your weaknesses or areas to be improved, is a huge advantage on its own. To you this means, that even if you had only agreed that some things about yourself could be improved, but had no chance or no courage to actually do something about them, you already have made positive progress!
Remember it: you cannot fail with your personal development!
There is no harm in trying
As with anything else, it is very important that you actually try doing something in order to improve yourself. What I’m saying is this: if you are not sure whether some actions on your personal development plan will work or not, do them anyway! Anything you do, no matter how insignificant it might seem, will make a positive difference in the end. You may not see any immediate results, but you will improve eventually.
Sometimes, you have to try something only to get experience. This gained experience will help you make better decisions and take proper actions trying some other parts of your personal development.
Don’t know about you, but to me it’s always better to try my best at something and not get the perfect result from the first attempt, than to never even try it.
Having not reached the goal, I will learn as much as I can from the mistakes made, and will definitely approach the same problem at a later time, just to test it again and see if I can cope with it using new experience. I never give up easily, just because I believe that you can achieve anything if you try your best. And it simply takes way too many attempts for me to be absolutely sure that I’ve tried everything I could to achieve my goal.
One very good thing such an approach gives me is certainty: I’m much more sure about my ability to get through many problems I face, simply because I know I’ll keep trying no matter what.
From the other hand, deciding to not even try something has very negative impact. It will not only discourage you from many other things, seemingly independent from what you’re giving up on, but it will also haunt you for many days (weeks and sometimes even years) to come. As time will pass, you will feel more and more confident about facing the original challenge, and you will also start getting really irritated with yourself for not trying your best back when you had the opportunity. You’ll be lucky if it’s not too late to do it, but quite often the chance is gone.
You should know: with personal development it’s never too late to start, but I advise you make the decision to improve yourself once and forever, and then fearlessly try anything that might help you improve.
Find ways to motivate yourself
Personal development is a constant process. It is very easy to get started, but it is impossible to finish. You’ll be constantly improving yourself throughout your life, so you might as well learn how to get and stay motivated about your self-growth.
Think about it this way: millions of people go through their lives without any questioning. They spend year after year, not even hoping to improve anything. Some people are genuinely happy, of course, but the majority is simply too weak and too lazy – and so, due to one reason or another, most of them never find the courage, time or motivation to get started with their personal development.
Compared to them, you’ve already made a giant leap forward: you’ve made a decision to improve. You’ve made a commitment, and you have taken the first few steps. Why stop now, that you’ve gone this far?
One very simple way of staying motivated about your personal development is to make a small improvement every day. You don’t have to make a big change or transform completely, but as long as you consciously improve something really small about yourself on a regular basis, you’re on the right track and you’ve got all the reasons to feel good about it.
Personal development opens limitless opportunities to you, because it’s a process of bringing your enjoyment of life and your self-growth to such highs which in the past were never thought possible. You not only can, but you most definitely will outgrow yourself: that’s the whole idea of personal development. Isn’t it motivating enough, to spend every day of your life changing and growing better?
Goal setting: do you know your goals?
Quite often, the disappointment comes from wrongly chosen goals. Failing in something most often means not failing to make progress, but failing to get the result you wished for. So it is very important to be able to understand where your frustration comes from in order to react.
Because your personal development is a process and not an event, you have to be conscious about a few things.
For instance, You’re not going to reach a point in your life when you’ll be 100% finished with your personal development. Just accept it, and never make it your goal. Otherwise, you’ll end up doing the right things, growing personally more and more, and still not being able to enjoy the results, because you’ll be waiting for some final state of mind which you simply can’t reach.
This is probably one of the cases when it is very appropriate to suggest: enjoy the process! Personal development is about constant self-growth and improvement, and as you grow, you’ll be setting higher and higher goals in your development, and therefore achieving more and more.
Well, hopefully you now get the picture and understand that there is really no way you could possibly fail with your personal development. Some results might take longer to show, but you will get there eventually.
Learn to enjoy your self-improvement, and always remember: one of the signs of being successful in personal development is genuinely enjoying the process of it!