Personal growth

Image for “Personal growth”, GoGetter Coaching

In my last piece I highlighted two types of growth, and promised I would describe each in a future article.

Here I’ll describe personal growth, the growth of oneself as a person. This is different from career growth, which is growth through one’s professional life.

Both types require recognition that the status quo is not enough. They require you to leave your comfort zone and try new things. If done correctly, both result in improvement, and both are necessary in life. There are successful CEOs and neurosurgeons who are horrible people. Clearly, they invested more in career rather than personal growth.

Personal growth, or self-improvement, starts with introspection, followed by a deep desire to become a “better” person. It takes motivation and willingness to make necessary changes. But it especially requires openness to feedback, and a positive attitude. Of course, any type of growth can only occur through learning.

Learning how to: avoid procrastination, be more responsible, control your temper; be aware of how polite, tactful or considerate you are; remind yourself to be more positive – these are examples of personal growth. Many begin at home, taught by parents and shaped by teachers, leaders and others, but sometimes an environmental factor may trigger the desire to grow, or it may spark from being inspired by a person, a book, movie or other experience.

Most successful people are lifelong learners who recognize that they don’t know everything, and that there is always room to grow, no matter how rich, famous or accomplished they are.

A dear family friend just turned 90 – she’s vivacious and happy, one of the most positive people I’ve known. As her huge birthday approached, she asked each of her friends to make a list of things she should “improve on”, as her birthday gift! It didn’t matter if their lists said “smile more”, “sit up straighter”, “wear your hearing aid” or “improve your knitting”. She wanted to improve! Unsurprisingly, this woman has hundreds of loving friends, and loads of people who admire her and flock to her for advice; sometimes, just to receive her beaming smile.

When you grow as a person, others notice. This can open doors at work, it can improve your attitude to life, and it can help you grow emotionally and spiritually, making you a more positive, happy, caring and successful person. It allows you to recognize your shortcomings and work on changing them…….. for the better. The world needs better people!

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