During a recent Life Group Session (a gathering that we do together with some church mates on a weekly basis), we talked about personal growth. Our facilitator threw this question at us: “Why do you need to grow?” We had different answers and it all boiled down to this thought: When you grow as an individual, you’ll see the greatness inside of you. And the choice becomes up to you as to how you unleash that greatness.
Here are some practical ways on how we can grow ourselves:
Read books. By reading books, you can grow by learning and acquiring knowledge and new ideas.
Pick up a new hobby. It’s great to try something new from time to time, because you can’t just be doing the same thing over and over again. For example, you enjoy cooking, so why not also try baking? That way, you can also build and learn new skills.
Create an inspirational room. How pleasant is it to wake up in the morning and see colorful and inspiring art on your walls? That can definitely start your day right! Whatever you choose, make sure it inspires you each day.
Overcome your fears. First, know and identify your fears so you could address them. Say, you have a fear of heights. Why not try something fun to overcome it, like wall climbing or zip lining?
Level up your skills. Like picking up a new hobby, you can level up your skills by doing better than what you usually do. If you are into hosting during a wedding, why not try hosting a corporate event? Maybe you can also attend some workshops regarding that particular skill.
Wake up early. Not a morning person? Start setting your alarm earlier in the day and make sure to not hit the snooze button. It could be easier to stick to this if you are working regular hours in the office, but even if you don’t, it’s better to wake up early because you’ll find you can accomplish a lot more activities for the day.
Have a weekly exercise. Stay healthy and physically fit by doing a weekly exercise. If you can’t do it everyday, at least maintain and commit to a consistent regular workout for your body.
Start your life handbook. Start writing on a journal or a diary about life and your goals. This will enable you to chronicle what happened during the day, mark something important and worth remembering that happened to you.
Write a letter to your future self. Try writing a letter to yourself and believe me, you’ll enjoy it. If you’re in your 20s, write one to your future 40 year-old self. Say everything you want like the goals you’ve set that came to reality at that age. In that way, you can see how powerful your dreams could be.
Ask for feedback. It’s a good habit to ask people for constructive criticism. This way, you’ll know what you should be improving on.
Stay focused on your to-do list. Staying focused on your to-do list helps you accomplish everything that is listed. If you do not focus on your list, there’s a tendency that you do something else and before you know it, you haven’t done anything at all that you should be doing.
Set BHAGs. Big Hairy Audacious Goals. The good thing about BHAGs is that it gets you out of thinking too small. You set big goals, big enough for you to think that it’s unachievable, but it’s possible. The aim is for you to think big enough; and should you underachieve, you are still able to accomplish more.
Acknowledge your flaws. Learn how to recognize your flaws and mistakes and take actions to improve on them and learn from it, instead of dwelling on them
Get into actions. Don’t just set goals, take concrete steps to achieve them.
Learn from the people who inspire you a lot. It’s important to have positive influences in your life. Seek help and mentorship from successful people who inspire you. Study their ways and what they do to grow on different areas of their lives.
Get rid of a bad habit. You cannot instantly remove a bad habit. It takes time and consistency. Start with the small things. If you have a habit of staying up late, try to remove all your gadgets and put it somewhere far from your bed. That way, you won’t be tempted to use those to watch something or open your social media accounts.
Cultivate a good habit. If you’ll be shaking off a bad one, you must also develop a good habit. There’s a finding that it takes 21 days to develop a new habit and also to break one. So if you’ll be developing a good one, better be consistent and once you cheat, you go back to zero.
Avoid negative people. If you can’t influence them with your positivity, better avoid them in the first place. Negative people can affect and influence how you think and see life.
Learn to deal with difficult people. Learn how to deal with people who make you uncomfortable or are difficult for you to be with, this makes you learn how to stretch your patience and improve your approach with people. It also develops your understanding on how to adapt with different personalities.
Learn from your set of good friends. Good friends will never turn you down and they will always aim for your growth. Turn to them when you need advice on how you can grow!
Get a mentor/coach. You can’t always do a self-study about the things you want to improve. Choose certain areas that you want to develop and ask someone who’s good at it to mentor you. Listen to what they have to say and learn from their experiences.
Reduce the time you spend on social media. Don’t focus on the things posted on your Facebook news feed or shared by celebrities you follow. Nowadays, these sites are not used to connect but to somehow seek attention. Instead of spending so much time in browsing, do more productive things to feed your mind and soul.
Stop watching TV. It’s okay to watch television from time to time, but don’t allow yourself to get too caught up with TV series or drama. You can also get news online instead of TV. Spending too much time watching TV can hinder us from doing more productive things on improving ourselves.
Have more face-to-face connection with friends. Stop relying on social media to check on your friends. People can easily play around the media and post things which are not really true about how they’re feeling. Sharing some good laughs with friends personally is way much better than using emoticons while chatting online.
Meditate. Pray, relax, renew your mind. Meditation can help you relieve stress and unnecessary burdens in your system. And it also helps you think and assess yourself.
Learn public speaking. It helps you develop your communication and presentation skills and the way you engage with people.
Let go of the past. Don’t dwell on the past or let the past hinder you from doing things that can make you grow. Sometimes, fear develops because of certain things that previously happened to you, but you shouldn’t let that gain full control over you.
Show kindness to the people around you. And do it genuinely.
Reach out to the people who’ve hurt you and forgive them. It’s easier said than done, but imagine how people would respect you and how you can develop maturity by doing this. It will show how understanding you are and how mature you deal with people who in a way or another, hurt you.
Take a break. You’ve been working so hard and it’s not a crime to somehow pause with what you’re doing. Have a vacation, take some rest. You will never be burned out by doing this once in a while.
Commit to your personal growth. Even if you have a thousand items on your list dedicated to your growth as an individual, it’s never going to happen without your commitment. If you really want to, you will get things done.