The basis for success in our lives is to continually grow as human beings and achieve self-control. For this, the role of personal growth and professional development goal is important. This article is the ultimate guide to your personal growth. Read on!
What is personal growth?
Before starting to enter the subject, it is propitious that we define what personal development or growth means. In ancient Greece, Socrates already spoke about a fundamental skill for every human being: self-knowledge. We can define personal growth as the set of skills and activities carried out to know oneself, its aspirations, and desires.
Although there are different definitions and/or approaches to the concept of personal growth, by our professional training and experience, we are much more in favor of tangible and concrete concepts.
In simple words, for you to reach your personal or professional development goals, it is important to know and develop a set of skills that allow you to reach your desired destination.
A Path to Personal Growth
Below we will detail the path of personal development that we propose in the article, ranging from a macro aspect to your day-to-day actions:
- Purpose of life and personal mission
The first step in this whole journey is to know what we really want, to know for sure what makes us happy and what drives us to get out of bed every day. The best tool for that is to have a purpose of life and a well-defined personal mission in writing. With this, we will manage to organize our thoughts and capture everything we dream in the physical world.
There is a key factor when it comes to reaching your goals and this is having a warm and well-defined life purpose. The main mistake we make when it comes to setting goals is not to take into account what is our real motivation to do things. This leads us to establish objectives that are not necessarily aligned with what we want.
Many times, we allow ourselves to be influenced by our environment or by what society dictates to us as “what it should be,” for example having a car, a house and a family. Be careful, we do not say that this is bad or good, our point is that we are pigeonholed into the figure of an ideal citizen and leave aside what we really want.
If we extrapolate these two concepts to the area of business administration (I feel a little more comfortable in this, since it is my training area), there is a small but important difference between what is a purpose and a mission in an organization.
Purpose: this is the reason for the existence of the organization, it is why you do what you do. The purpose tends to be permanent over time and to undergo very few modifications.
This is totally applicable to the personal sphere, your life purpose is the reason why you get up every day in the morning. It must be the engine that moves you to achieve all those goals that you set and this will rarely change throughout your life.
Mission: the mission details the actions you perform to fulfill your life purpose. It answers the abstract questions that arise from the purpose of life. A good mission must include what an organization does and what it does not do.
- Set your goals
The second step is to land all our desires on a series of goals, well-structured and balanced in all aspects of our lives. For this, it is important that each of them is aligned with our purpose. Otherwise, even if you manage to reach them, they will be empty and will not help you in your personal development.
Once you have your goals well defined, it is time to create a series of plans and systems that lead you to meet those goals. Remember that the only difference between those who meet their goals and those who only raise them are the systems with which they support reaching those goals.
Some examples of life goals are finding love: Many people who have spent long periods in solitude decide to find a partner. It can be objected that one cannot fall in love simply by will, that is, the goal is unrealistic.
However, having an open attitude to meeting people gives the possibility that love appears. That is to say that it is an objective that can guide certain attitudes, but that can bring frustrations if it is not taken into account that the result also depends on chance.
Improve health: This objective refers to different ways of benefiting one’s own body and thus increasing well-being. Each objective has its method, which must be consulted with a doctor.
Finishing education: This objective and the previous ones refer to personal growth. The motivation to propose these goals can be out of curiosity or the pleasure of acquiring new knowledge, or because they can benefit us in work goals. Having a good performance in the educational field not only helps us learn but also increases our self-esteem.
Create habits that support your goals
The third step is the creation of habits that help you work on your goals consistently over time, whether you have the willpower or not. The great advantage of working your habits is that you will not depend on the motivation or your state of mind to carry out the tasks that you must-do if you want to succeed in your goals.
With the creation of habits, you will be able to consistently achieve all your goals, the power of habits in your life can become the key factor of your future success.
- Be productive
The last step is as important as the others, once you have defined the direction by which you will go in your life, you have clarity of the goals you want to achieve. So, you have a system of robust habits that will give you the necessary support to reach your destination, it’s time to be efficient when you get to work.
With productivity, you will be able to prioritize for all those tasks that are important for your future and to silence the distractions of the environment. Whether or not you are productive will make a difference in the number of things you achieve in your life or not, that is why it is so important to develop this ability.
Moreover, although the path of personal development that we propose here in the article is enough for you to achieve success in what you propose, there are other interesting areas to develop.
Minimalism consists of having everything you need and needing everything you have. Minimalism can and should be applied to all areas of your life, not just the material. We want you to know that its use and application in your life will free you from a lot of stress and allow you to use that energy in what really matters.
The power of reading
Another very important area to develop is to cultivate your mind through reading or talks from people who inspire you and open your eyes to new ideas. That is why you need to incorporate different books that help in the path of personal development and inspire you by giving you some unique ideas on how to deal with certain problems that arise along the way.
Personal action plan: a practical example
For the action plan to be operational, it also has to be linked to a specific timeframe.
For example, write a script with the intended purpose for the next three months or the next half-year – one of the best individual development plan examples. The temporal period is also linked to the degree of difficulty of the challenge to be achieved.
The SWOT analysis is an example of a simple technique that can help you to have a context view of this process that you want to undertake. To do this, you have to make an enumeration of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats that you face.
- Strengths in personal and professional development goals
Complement your look by broadening the focus of attention to value those abilities and talents that define you and that can help you to be closer to the goal you want to achieve.
For example, have a wealth of vocabulary, perseverance, the illusion of living this experience or overcoming previous oral exams. Now, following the plotline of your goal, write an inventory of nutritional strengths that feed your self-acceptance and self-respect.
- Weaknesses in personal and professional development goals
Once you have identified the weaknesses of the personal or professional development plan, you can recognize the limits that are a brake on you. For example, imagine that your personal development goal is to train your public speaking skills.
From the characteristics of each protagonist, different variables could be listed, for example, the lack of previous experience, the fear of ridicule, the excess of insecurity (insecurity is not a defect, however, when it becomes a limit to not face certain situations it is convenient to listen to that inside information).
Take a pencil and paper, create a column with the theme of the weaknesses and enumerate a rain of ideas always in relation to you and with the objective to reach.
- Opportunities in personal and professional development goals
From the point of view complementary to the previous section, in the near environment, you can also list positive ones – for example, knowledge of languages. What points can approach the goal you want to achieve – for instance, training or knowledge of languages.
- Threats in the personal and professional development goals
In the description of the weaknesses, you put the focus of attention mainly on yourself as the protagonist of this action plan. However, in the threats section, you expand the vision to diagnose also those elements of risk that you can identify in your environment. What external aspects take you away from your goal?
By enumerating the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, you can have a vision of context that increases your level of objectivity in the interpretation of reality.
How to make a personal development plan: 5 basic tips
- Identify the goal and purpose of this personal development plan.
- Describe the steps of the action plan focusing on those issues that depend solely on you.
- Take an inventory of the resources you will use. For example, a person who wants to train their public speaking skills can invest in training through a specialized course.
- Set short-term goals that are aligned with your main goal. For example, a person who wants to develop their public speaking skills can set the goal of, in a specific time frame, asking a question to a speaker at a conference.
- Create a support network. Although you are the main protagonist of your personal development plan, having collaborative alliances will help you to nurture your motivation. Make part of your personal development plan to some people in your environment that are important to you.
How to set professional development goals
Here are some tips to set your professional development goals.
- Sketch some goals
They need not necessarily be related to your professional career. However, these first goals should match the way you see yourself in 1, 5, and 10 years. It does not have to be anything very detailed, but it is the first exercise so that you begin to understand your main goals in your life, over time. Evaluate some professional goals, career goals, such as the companies where you would like to act, the position you wish to occupy, etc.
- In one year: to be promoted to supervisor of my area
- In 5 years: tying as a manager, for 2 years, in this same company
- In 10 years: opening my own business
- Evaluate your main characteristics and qualities
A minimum of self-criticism is elementary so that you understand the type of professional you are and how you can better explore your main traits, strengths or weaknesses.
In this way, you also understand the level of satisfaction with the position, with the company and the area that you occupy, currently.
What can be fundamental to changing airs if you feel the need? What weaknesses do you need to improve (take a course, for example?) Or which strengths to use to continue advancing your career?
- What points can you perfect?
It is also important to focus on the points that you believe are possible to develop better. After all, you are in continuous improvement, but there are details that deserve a little more of your attention initially. Recognizing which ones are a great first step.
It can be a second language, more patience, the improvement of their communicative abilities. Every person, when stipulating their professional goals, has already undergone this process, in order to find the best opportunities to reach each one of them.
- Create an action plan
Here, focus on the actions you have planned to achieve your professional goals. As an example, a professional looking for the development of a second language. For this, he can take private classes or in specialized schools or, even, take a course of exchange. It is relevant that here, you identify the best ways to improve all the aspects that you have sketched so far.
- Create clear professional goals
Let’s say you’re a recent graduate, you’re on your first job, and you’ve set your career goals to become CEO in the next 6 months. Is this really achievable?
You have to go a long way to make that happen, so even if one of your professional goals is this one, you must evaluate what you have to do to get there. In this way, it is important to set clear and attainable goals so that you evaluate, throughout your journey, the development of this process.