Personal development is a very broad concept.
Many people feel lost at the understanding of this term.
Is it a trend, a last fashion to follow, or a new lifestyle to adopt?
I am personally a great fan of personal development and self-questioning.
These have helped me enormously to become a better version of myself.
And I think that you too can change your life with personal development.
I’m about to explain how.
In this article you will find :
• The 8 pillars of personal development.
• Concrete exercises to practice.
• Inspiring quotes to guide you.
• Personal development: definition
Personal development: definition
It is difficult to define personal development clearly and precisely.
But generally speaking, it is the desire to do real work on oneself, to go deep inside ourselves and develop our full potential.
It is a philosophy of life that we apply on a daily basis.
You will thus question your life, your way of being and your way of thinking. This will allow you to know yourself better and above all to evolve.
With personal development, you will :
• Better manage and understand your emotions.
• Surpass yourself.
• Learn about yourself, your desires and aspirations.
You will work on all the important aspects of your being, allowing you to live a more fulfilled and happy life.
In other words, it is a conscious practice of questioning, evolution and development of yourself.
The 8 pillars of personal development
I have developed for you the 8 points, which in my opinion are the pillars of personal development.
#1 Question yourself
The basis of personal development is self-questioning.
Of one’s environment, of one’s life.
It is crucial to ask the right questions.
The goal is to try to answer them by yourself, by digging deep within yourself.
You will thus see that each question asked often leads to a multitude of other questions which pushes you to do more research within yourself.
This will also allow you to put words to your emotions. And by becoming aware of them, you will be much more able to manage them.
When I ask myself questions about myself and my way of life, I can feel different emotions.
This can be positive emotion, such as a feeling of motivation. Motivation to change my environment or to surpass myself.
Or it can be a negative emotion, such as a feeling of failure. Failure to have accomplished certain things, or to not be who I would like to be, etc.
Whether the emotion is negative or positive, I take a step back and put my finger on things that bother me and that I would like to change.
This makes me much more aware of what I’m going through, who I am and how I feel.
For some people, questioning is natural. For others, much less so.
But whether you’re in the first or second category, you can train your mind to question.
Of course, the more you question yourself and step back, the more natural it will be.
In my opinion, nothing is more important than self-knowledge.
#2 Take the time
From a self-development perspective, you need to give yourself time.
The time to find your path, your goals, your desires, etc..
Take time to understand your emotions, who you are, what you feel and why.
Take time to put into practice what you learn, what you read, what you live.
When we learn new concepts, it takes time to include them in our lives. To change our habits and make new ones.
And when we start a new process, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to change right away. To make everything perfect.
But by being aware that it will take time, you will take this pressure off your shoulders.
You will accept the fact that you have to be patient and that the results will come in time. And that’s reassuring.
Taking time is fundamental if you want to grow and evolve.
Like a child, to walk, talk, listen, etc., takes time.
#3 Learn continuously
We must never stop learning.
Educating yourself is extremely important for your self-development because it makes you progress.
We must remain curious, educate ourselves, seek, ask, constantly.
Learn, from everyone.
Your brain is a muscle that should not be left to die.
When you stop learning, you stop growing and evolving. You may even regress.
Today we have information and knowledge everywhere and at our fingertips.
Whether it’s in books, blogs, podcasts, Youtube channels, movies and other media, from family, friends, experts.
We’re spoilt for choice.
When I became interested in personal development, I read a lot of books on the subject, watched videos, read articles.
It helped me enormously, I was able to understand more deeply the concepts that interested me and how to put them into practice.
Feel free to have a look at my selection of books on personal development that you absolutely must read.
So read, learn, participate in activities, take night classes.
Exceed yourself and develop your full potential.
#4 Change your state of mind
Your mind is extremely powerful and can make you perceive positive situations as negative.
The same situation can be experienced and perceived very differently by two people. This is why you need to train your mind to see life in a positive and constructive way.
Until a few years ago, my state of mind was completely different.
I was too often seeing the glass half empty.
This put me in a sad and negative state. This impacted my day and even my week. I could go through extremely difficult days.
And then one day I got tired of it. Enough of being overwhelmed by these negative emotions, of no longer being in control of myself.
So I decided to get myself under control and get my mind to think differently.
I asked myself questions such as: why am I feeling this negative emotion, how can I move on to a positive emotion, etc. I asked myself questions such as: why am I feeling this negative emotion, how can I move on to a positive emotion, etc.?
And little by little, I trained my mind to see life positively, to be constructive and in control of my emotions. This really changed my life.
• Stop focusing on what’s wrong, see what’s right.
• No longer see problems as insurmountable, instead look for solutions.
• Stop looking only at your failures, look at your successes as well.
• Don’t just point out other people’s weaknesses, admire their strengths.
Of course, changing your state of mind requires effort, but evolving and growing require work and time.
I promise you that you will see a real change, a real surpassing of yourself.
Any change starts from your state of mind, and you can make it happen.
#5 Practice gratitude and recognition.
We tend to quickly forget how lucky we are.
The chance to be healthy, to be alive, to be well surrounded or to lack nothing.
In a change of state of mind, gratitude is a practice to be integrated into your life.
Of course, the grass can always be greener elsewhere, but let’s already be grateful for our beautifully colored grass.
There are many ways to express your gratitude and appreciation.
• Affirmations. 10 minutes a day, in the morning or before going to bed, take the time to consciously thank life and be thankful for what you have, even the smallest thing.
• Say thank you, have kind and grateful words to the people around you, or be present and listening to them.
• Keep a gratitude journal. Write down your reasons for being happy on a regular basis, and read them when you are feeling down.
You will soon see the change this will bring about in you.
#6 Detach yourself
Personal development passes through several types of secondment.
Detach yourself from what others think.
We live in a world where everyone is constantly judging themselves.
Although it is important to take into account what some people think of you, you must detach yourself from the negative view of others.
Differentiate between people who want you well and want to see you evolve from those who do not have constructive judgment.
By making this difference, you will be able to detach yourself little by little from the negative gaze of the bad people and thus have less negative emotions in your life.
Detach yourself from the material.
Buddhists tell us that in order to live a more fulfilled life, we should detach ourselves from all possessions.
By this they mean no longer being afraid of losing these possessions.
In today’s world, we are over-consuming things we don’t really need. And detaching ourselves from all these possessions would allow us to acquire a certain freedom.
Of course, this is quite a process and you can put it into practice to different degrees.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself; the most important thing is that you are in tune with yourself.
The hectic pace of our lives often makes us forget to let go. To take the time to breathe and stop wanting to be productive 100% of the time.
To take a day for yourself, to relax, not to think, to put your brain on pause.
As your body needs a day of rest after days of training, your brain needs to let go.
You will be more productive afterwards.
#7 Take Action
It is indeed very important to educate oneself and to learn new concepts.
However, many people stop there and forget about the action part that is so important.
Personal development requires constant practice. To do this, you have to overcome your fears and take the plunge.
We all procrastinate while waiting for a miracle. Someone, something that will make things move forward. That our life will be different.
Only, no one but yourself will come to save you. You are the only actors in your life, the only ones who can make a difference and go where you want to go.
When you decide you are ready to act, go ahead.
Call that person, create that business, get in shape, make that dream come true. The world is yours.
Don’t wait any longer and take action.
#8 Be forgiving
Whether it is towards yourself or towards others, personal development is also about being understanding.
We are often angry with others.
They’re not good enough, they’re not understanding enough, they’re different, and so on.
We find it hard not to judge and compare ourselves to them. It’s in our human nature.
But when we want to surpass ourselves and evolve, we have to go beyond these basic instincts. Become more understanding, more indulgent towards others.
These people may be experiencing difficult events or feel a deep sense of unease.
We often forget to put ourselves in the place of others; being more forgiving to others will bring you real inner peace.
It is completely normal to have fears, doubts, hesitation, etc..
Not being able to keep up with the other 7 pillars above. Personal development is a long process, which requires effort and change.
And it is perfectly normal to take the time to try, fail and start over.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Learn to tell yourself: it’s normal to fail, to fail and to take my time.
It is so important to be forgiving to yourself. You are your best friend, your own life partner.
So love and understand yourself. No one else will.
5 Personal Development Exercises
How can you put personal development into practice in your daily life?
To accompany you in your personal development process, here are 5 personal development exercises that you can practice on a daily basis.
Exercise #1: Meditate
Every day, practice 5-10 minutes of meditation. In the morning before starting your day or at the end of your day.
Make yourself comfortable in a quiet and pleasant place. You must find an upright position and be very attentive to your breathing.
After a short mediation session, you will find the calm and energy you need.
If you need a little help, here is a video to meditate 10 min.
Exercise #2: Relax and learn how to breathe
Learning to relax and breathe better will allow you to connect your body to your mind and be in the moment. To be there.
To achieve this, I strongly advise you to practice yoga.
By practicing yoga, you will develop your ability to breathe better, to relax and to be present.
You will also reconnect to the essential things.
Yoga is a true ally of personal development.
Exercises #3: Practice Positive Thinking
Through positive affirmations, you will bring your mind to be programmed in positive mode.
To do this, use positive affirmations that you will repeat every morning.
Whether in your head or out loud, affirm these affirmations by believing them.
• I have everything I need to do this.
• I love life and my surroundings.
• My heart is overflowing with joy and love.
• I observe my emotions without becoming attached to them.
You will find on the internet a lot of positive affirmations that touch on different aspects of life.
Make a small selection of 5 to 10 statements that really speak to you. And recite them every day.
Exercise #4: Let Your Creativity Go
Why not renew your creativity?
Before you go to bed, make up stories and write them in a journal.
Buy painting, drawing or other materials and let your imagination run wild.
It doesn’t have to be the next work to be exhibited, you’re doing it for yourself.
Take pictures of anything and everything with your phone. Anything that catches your eye and inspires you.
Look out your window and by looking at the world, create all kinds of stories for yourself.
There are plenty of ways to boost your creativity.
Exercise #5: Congratulate yourself
Every night, take a journal and write down all the things you are proud of on that day.
Whether it’s for passing a dish, an exam, a meeting, asserting yourself.
You probably have good reasons to be proud of yourself, so build up your self-confidence and detail what made you succeed that day.
10 Personal Development Quotes
Here are some personal development quotes to help and inspire you.
“Success is having what you want. Happiness is loving what you have.”
H. Jackson Brown
“Whatever you dream of doing, start it. Boldness has genius, power, magic.”
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
“Don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are safe from the opinions of others, you will not be the victim of unnecessary suffering.”
Don Miguel Ruiz
“The greatest traveller is not the one who has been around the world 10 times. But the one who has only been around once.”
“We can’t choose the external circumstances, but we can always choose how we respond to them.”
“Education is the most powerful weapon to change the world.”
“Gratitude is the memory of the heart.”
“To act freely is to take possession of oneself.”
“We don’t see things as they are. We see them as we are.”
I sincerely hope that this article will help you on your personal development path.