If you are an aspiring professional, then personal development and continuous learning are of utmost importance – here is a comprehensive guide. Read on!
Personal development is a process comprising of a set of activities that builds and enhances a person’s potential and capabilities to stand smart and efficient. Different behavioral characteristics and traits are inculcated through training, courses, and podcasts focusing on various areas of personal development.
In this article we will discuss the different facets of personal development, the techniques and methodology applied for both personal and professional development. The pursuit of consistent personal development should be an essential part of your growth, be it personal or professional.
What is personal development?
What is personal development? There are 5 distinct aspects or areas of personal development.
The key skills or attributes that define personal development strategy are,
- Interpersonal relation
- Honesty and integrity
- Analytical ability
- Problem-solving capacity
What is self improvement?
What is self improvement? Self improvement is a way an individual uplifts oneself by upskilling, continual learning, being optimistic, and instilling a vision for future growth. First and foremost, a person should develop a self improvement plan and list out the areas of self improvement like the required skills, character traits, relationships, objectives in life, etc.
The next step is how to self improve, which we will discuss in the upcoming sections – the path towards personal development.
Most trending 15 personal development topics
The most trending 15 personal development topics are elaborated below for your quick reference,
- Communication – For better expression and clarity of your thoughts and ideas
- Self-confidence – one of the vital self-help topics for achieving the desired objectives
- Vision and goals – A crucial factor for personal development
- Optimistic Mind – For progress in career as well as living a happier life with family and friends
- Productivity – Greater is your productivity, the faster you can achieve your objectives
- Motivation – A driving factor to attain the goals in life
- Stress management – To prevent brain drain and mental disbalance
- Fitness – Health is wealth, hence fitness regime must be followed
- Jovial – Being jovial, enthusiastic, and happy is the key to success
- Ambition – Without an ambition, progress is uncertain
- Relationship – A stable relationship with partner, kids, and parents keeps a mind stable and focused
- Empathy – Being compassionate with fellow beings leads to a balanced social life
- Dedication – Without focus and dedication, you cannot dream big
- Leadership – One of the essential personal development topics for future growth
- Attitude – Honesty, and sincerity in attitude is a requisite
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Personal development plan
A personal development plan or PDP is a document that enlists the goals to be achieved, the path towards achieving the goals through self-improvement of the shortcomings, skills, or training needed for personal development. In this section, we will discuss some personal development plan examples professional for reference.
1. What does a personal development plan include?
A personal development plan includes the following,
- Personal or self development objectives – must contain the goals and objectives you want to achieve for betterment for a period of 1 to 5 years.
- Self-analysis and assessment – to identify the improvement areas where you need to focus on. This exercise involves assessing the strengths and weaknesses.
- A personal professional development plan – specifying the step-by-step process and activities for achieving the objectives. If you refer to any personal development plans example, you will find target dates are mentioned.
- Continual progress tracking and upgrade plan – for qualitative and quantitative evaluation of the personal development progress
2. Personal development plan template for reference
Here is a sample personal development template that you can refer to create a personal development plan and you can start recording your personal development ideas.
|Learning and Development Requirements||Mode of Learning (webinar, self-study, etc.)||Priority||Target Date||Expense||Funding||Evaluation|
In the above personal development planning example, the meanings imparted by columns are,
- Learning and Development requirements – require to upgrade your skill and personal development
- Mode of learning – It can be webinars, classroom training, or self-learning
- Priority – Set the sequence by which you want to achieve your objectives
- Target date of completion
- Expenses you will incur
- Funding – whether it is self-sponsored or company-sponsored
- Evaluation – to check if the plan is progressing as per the goals.
3. Two personal development planning examples
In this sub-section we will talk about two personal development planning examples,
1. SMART Goals – Following the SMART goals concept is one of the popular personal development plan examples for work.
S – SMART, M – Measurable, A – Achievable, R – Relevant, and T – Time-bound.
Some of the personal development plans sample questions are,
- What skills do I need to improve upon or adopt
- What resources do I need?
- How can I measure my success?
2. Stepwise personal development plan samples,
- Step 1: List down the top 10 or 15 goals you want to achieve
- Step 2: Prioritize them
- Step 3: Frame a timeline for each
- Step 4: Pen down your strength and weakness on each goal or skill
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5 steps to ensure self development throughout your career
What is self development and how to achieve it? Here are the 5 steps for career self development or upgrading self development skills are illustrated below,
- Analyze your current state – Try to assess your current strengths and skills as per self development definition. Based on the analysis, judge the areas of improvisation.
- Fix your goals – Define your goals and your career vision in the next 5 to 10 years; a significant step for personal development
- Perform a gap analysis – A gap analysis will assist in identifying the deficiencies in your soft skills and interpersonal skills
- Prepare the career self development plan – Set your tasks and activities with target dates
- Evaluate and measure your progression – A very vital step to ensure continual enhancement in career self development
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Famous personal development quotes
Let us now look at some famous personal development quotes. These quotes about personal development are sure to motivate you further.
- “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” – quoted by George Bernard Shaw on personal development
- “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” – one of the prominent personal development quotes by Napoleon Hill
- “What we think, we become.” – a quote by the divine Lord Buddha
- “We must become the change we want to see.” – quoted by the great Mahatma Gandhi
- “They must often change who would be constant in happiness and wisdom.” – Confucius
Defining personal transformation with an example
What is personal transformation? Personal life transformation is a process to re-discover oneself. It is a change in the behavioral characteristics of a person to keep one focused, energized, social, confident, and recognize the feeling of accomplishment.
For example, a person may get deviated occasionally from his or her office activities by social media engagements, phone calls, or distress in personal life. Balancing personal and professional life – is what you have to learn to overcome this situation.
You can seek guidance from an expert or attend various transformation workshops, webinars, learning courses, and read books on personal transformation or personal development.
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Top 5 personal development courses
By now, we have understood what is personal development. As the next step, we will focus on the top 5 personal development courses which you might undertake. The courses are of various types – personality development classes, personality development workshops, personality development programs, personality development training courses, and many more.
1. Confidence course
The 5 best confidence courses are listed below,
- Double your confidence and self-esteem – one of the personnel development courses of Udemy
- Become 100% secure in who you are – by Udemy
- Skillshare confidence classes
- NLP confidence and self-esteem breakthrough program – by Udemy
- How to break the habit of self-doubt and build real confidence – by CreativeLive
2. Personality development courses
The 5 prominent personality development courses are,
- Complete personality development course online – by Udemy
- How to rewire your brain – by Udemy
- The Science of well-being – by Yale university
- Life Mastery – Happiness, health, and success by Udemy
- Career success – by University of California
3. Personal growth courses
The 5 popular personal growth courses are specified below,
- Skillshare personal growth and personality development course
- Master your brain: Neuroscience for personal development – by Udemy
- Train your brain – by Udemy
- Brain science: Improve and boost your memory – by Udemy
- Understand the mind – by Udemy
4. Self improvement courses
The 5 best self improvement courses are as follows,
- Work smarter and not harder – a self improvement course by the University of California
- Know Thyself – one of the self development courses by the University of Edinburgh
- The keys to self improvement – one of the best self-esteem courses by Udemy
- Radiate confidence – by Udemy
- 10X Superhuman focus – by Udemy
5. Stress management training
The top 5 stress management training courses are mentioned below,
- Stress Management: Easy ways to deal with stress – by Udemy
- The Complete Stress and Anxiety breakthrough program – by Udemy
- Managing emotions in times of uncertainty and stress – by Yale University
- Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health – by University of Sydney
- Emotional Intelligence – by Udemy
What is personal growth?
How do you define personal growth? Personal growth is coupled with personal development. It is the process by which an individual identifies his or her talent and skillset and improvises continually. In this section, we will discuss some examples of personality growth and development and which are the personal growth areas one must focus on.
1. Two personal growth examples
- Example 1 – One of the best personal growth examples is to set up a goal to learn something new every week. It may be related to technology, industrial domain, knowledge related to some outdoor adventurous activities, world politics, etc. Knowledge matters, be it in which category or area. That’s a big step towards personal growth and development.
- Example 2 – One of the other personal growth examples is to keep a daily journal of the work done and what more is to be done. This helps in tracking down the progress achieved to date and prepare a plan for further personal growth and learning.
2. Areas of personal growth
There are 5 types of personal growth and personal development – social, mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional. In this sub-section, we will talk about the key areas of personal growth related to the 5 types.
- Planning and Organization – One of the vital areas of growth examples to focus on to achieve the goals within a stipulated time
- Time Management – Managing and adhering to deadlines for completing scheduled tasks and activities help in both personal and professional growth
- Interpersonal relation – If you go by the self-growth definition, interpersonal relation has a crucial role to play
- Listening ability – Listening with patience and attention to others, drive personal development
- Conflict resolution – One of the important examples of personal growth to focus on to enable healthy relationships with colleagues
Three personal development podcast references
The three trending and best personal development podcasts are,
- The Mindvalley podcast – by Vishen Lakhiani; one of the best personal development podcasts
- School of greatness – by Lewis Howes
- The Marlie Forleo podcast
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How can a personal development coach help?
A personal development coach acts as a guide and mentor for personal development as well as personal improvement. He or she assists people in realizing their goals and achieving their objectives.
Besides they help to understand the importance of personal development and how to overcome the barriers in growth. Their training and guidance involve mainly,
- Creating self-awareness
- Establishing self-identity
- Developing the inherent potential
- Enhancing the value of life
- Framing a self development plan
- Helping step by step to overcome the weaknesses
5 personal development questions one can ask self
The 5 personal development questions one must ask oneself to understand the personal objectives and identify personal areas of improvement,
- What imbibes within me a sense of positivity and accomplishment?
- What are the areas I am not able to excel at, however, I have tried to improve on them?
- Which are my top 5 noteworthy achievements that have earned me good recognition and praise?
- Which are my top 5 failures that I need to focus on and try to be successful?
- Which actions of colleagues interest me most and which are the actions that disappoint me most?
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Top 5 personal development books
Here is the list of the top 5 personal development books,
- Fooled by Randomness by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, is one of the top personal development books
- The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene, is one of the best books for personal development
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey, is one of the best personal development books of all time
- The Psychedelic Explorer’s Guide by James Fadiman is also one of the top personal development books
- Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert is one of the prominent personal development audiobooks
What are personal development skills?
Personal development skills are those qualities and capabilities that help you grow personally as well as professionally. Recognizing these skills and improving on them can help you optimize your potential. Also called self-improvement or personal growth.
Individuals should consider various personal skills based on their goals; here are a few examples of skills that people usually strive to develop,
- Self – Confidence
- Interpersonal Skills
- Organizational Skills
- Work ethic
Communication in this context does not refer to the direct art of conversation; but considers the various aspects of it, such as verbal, written and non-verbal cues. Part of mastering communication includes being a good listener.
In fact, more than begin able to put thoughts out, one must learn to listen attentively, absorb the information being passed on, comprehend it before responding to it, so you can respond effectively.
This skill helps you build on a balanced communication technique that can prove useful in both your personal and professional lives. Good communicators should speak clearly and confidently, using an optimistic and situationally acceptable tone.
Tip: Learn to actively pay attention and illustrate to others that you truly value their opinions and what they have to say. Choose active listening, open-ended question, with supporting body language, and remove any distractions that hinder your ability to listen.
Numerous studies have shown that an individual’s intelligence is not the only significant component for success. Instead, there are other factors that are more valuable for consideration, in determining success such as self-confidence, goal setting, and determination.
Self-confidence here relates to the belief in your own abilities, actions, and decisions. You may be more likely to pursue and sustain more ambitious goals if you have confidence in yourself.
Tip: In order to be someone who is seen as a mentor or leader, one must understand and action their well-balanced set of skills effectively. Leaders are represented by their ability to support, guide, and mentor others; they show resilience, have mastered the art of conflict resolution, can manage stress effectively, and have a growth mindset.
Being adapting does not imply being submissive and agreeing, or accepting any situation for what it is. Rather, adaptability is your ability to comprehend situations and adjust your reaction to it according to the demand.
It requires keen observation and deduction. To adapt, you must learn to spectate and absorb the environment you are in, understand the new things quickly and easily. Adopt from others the skills and behaviours you deem fit and valuable for the environment.
With this, you can manage change well and also get along with different personalities. Typically, you can excel in any climate and even stay calm in startling situations.
Tip: The key to being adaptable is to take more risks and step out of your comfort zone. Facing situations you normally wouldn’t be a part of and reacting appropriately to them will hone your skills. The key is being rational and amicable in situations.
4. Interpersonal Skills
Interpersonal skills are the foundation of having positive relationships. These also known as your people skills or social skills. They can be both verbal and nonverbal behaviours that are reactions to interaction with other individuals.
Interpersonal skills dictate your ability to develop and foster strong working relationships. These skills include collaboration, proactive participation, empathy, diplomacy etc.
5. Organizational skills
Organizational skills, on the whole, include not just your ability to be prepared, stay organized, and manage the physical and digital spaces; It also includes extending and managing your interpersonal skills effectively in an organization.
Good organization skills could help you save time, prevent miscommunications, and enhance your efficiency. A few examples of Organizational skills include,
- Creating and keeping deadlines.
- Attention to detail
- Practical Delegation and Teamwork
- Goal setting and meeting.
- Decision making.
- Managing appointments.
- Team management.
- Project management.
- Making schedules.
Integrity is your measure of trustworthiness and reliability. You typically trust those who stand by their beliefs and are honest. Having integrity can lead to a positive reputation and promotional opportunities.
Tip: Set regular integrity self-assessments for yourself. In these assessments, you can evaluate and provide feedback for yourself, on how you view your actions and responses to tasks over the past few weeks or months.
7. Work ethic
The popular definition of Work Ethic is a belief that hard work and diligence have a moral benefit and an inherent ability or value to strengthen character and individual abilities. It is a set of values centred on the importance of work that is manifested by determination or desire to work hard. A good work ethic encompasses,
- Accountability etc.
If you hold a good work ethic, you tend to be successful, and your attitude towards work is also more optimistic.
Did you know: Showcasing your attributes associated with a good work ethic can increase your employability and help you position yourself for better job opportunities.
Kuntala is a versatile writer with a focus on diverse areas around work, productivity, collaboration at work, hiring, management, HR, and training. Her background of past experience in technology and consulting helps in molding razor-sharp insights into the research and user-focused content she creates. Professionally she is an IT consultant in a sales role and also a writer of short stories and poems, travel blogger, and fashion influencer.