A People of Personal Development
One of the most important factors in our success as entrepreneurs, employees, professionals and members of society is Personal Development.
Personal Development can be defined as:
The deliberate act of daily working on oneself to improve in every area of life in order to become a person of value to society while achieving set personal goals.
Many of us come into this world, go through schooling, get a job and die without ever understanding the extent of our capacity and without stretching ourselves and discovering our talents. It is said that:
A man should work on himself harder than he works on his Job. If he works hard on his job, he can make a living, but if he works hard on himself he can make a fortune.
Whether it is learning a new skill, working on your character, attitude and personality or simply reading a book, we all have to continue growing and graduating to a higher stage every day/month /year. Personal Development pushes us pass the limitations of mediocrity and excuses towards a different outlook on life, business, self and attitude towards others while taking our lives and our business to the next level.
Personal Development includes the following:
1.Taking full responsibility for your life. Real transformation will come only when you take full responsibility for the condition of your life at this present moment. When you delegate that responsibility to others, you strip yourself of the power to change your circumstances. Stop mulling over who’s at fault and be sure of who is responsible.
2. Kaizen Quality lifestyle. Kaizen concept of Total Quality Management teaches holistic, integrated and constant development in quality and value. If we apply this concept to our life and our business, we will see extraordinary results.
3. Being goal oriented. Gospel artiste Sho Baraka said “They taught us to aim for nothing and look, we have hit it!” We have been taught to sum up life as school, job, family and death and because life is so unpredictable we should just figure it out as we go along; this is far from the truth. The man who has no goals is a man who has no direction in life. It is very important to set clearly defined long-term and short-term goals for ourselves and our business. We have to let go of the live-life-like-there-is-no-tomorrow mentality and understand that life is too valuable to just live by chance hoping that things will eventually work out. We must always work towards set objectives being conscious of the volatility of life and the sovereignty of God.
4. Rejecting mediocrity. According to Dr. Camillo Cruz, “The opposite of success is not failure, but mediocrity. Failure is a tool for learning and perfecting our craft.” Mediocrity tells us that it is better to sit and do nothing than take action at the risk of failing. We develop a comfort zone that is built up around our excuses, our limiting mindset, people’s opinions, geographical location, etc. to protect us from potential failure and embarrassment. This comfort zone is a barrier to development and a successful life because it brings just enough discomfort to cause us to complain but not enough so as to provoke action. Mediocrity is the resting place of misery.
5. Investing in your mind. Never stop learning, reading and improving yourself while striving to be your best. Don’t be afraid to spend on conferences, furthering your studies, seminars, books or any opportunity you have to learn something useful to life and your business. Nowadays we place more value on personal indulgence than on personal development and that is why it easy to buy a foot-long Subway and think it crazy to spend the same amount on a 60 page book.
6. Learning and Teaching. Surround yourself with like-minded people and learn from each other. You grow and develop the most while teaching others. The joy of helping others succeed motivates us to keep raising our standards so as to continue pouring into others. Grenada has successful business men and woman who are willing to pass on their accumulated knowledge on business skills and ethics from our island’s perspective but you need to be where the information is flowing.
7. Shaping Your Personal Philosophy. This is the totality of our thought patterns that drive our actions and will eventually determine our results. We must meticulously analyze our belief systems and remove every limiting thought or belief that keeps us from improving ourselves. For example, in the Caribbean we always claim we want change, but our personal philosophy dictates that the best way to change is to complain, criticize and blame those who we think are responsible and wait helplessly until something happens. It is amazing how culture seeps into our personal philosophy and influences our life choices and business success.
8. Becoming a Person of Value. Firstly let me clarify. The term value refers to our ability to add to society and the market place. A person of value will always be highly demanded and justly rewarded because income levels are closely related to personal development (if you want more then you have to become more). As an employee or entrepreneur, you have to become an asset and never a liability to the company and opportunities will open up to you. It is useless competing with others in an attempt to be the best because this limits our potential. Our only competition is against ourselves and the best we can be. What you do cannot add value to who you are but who you are will always add value to what you do so make sure you keep working on yourself, increasing in value.
9. Maturity & Not Magic. Finally let me say that all of this talk is useless if we are not mature enough to take action in leaps of faith. Change will not happen magically overnight and it is difficult to face reality with a renewed mindset because of constant contradiction between who we are, who we say we are and who we want to be as a society. Invest time into changing and bettering yourself in every way possible and know that sooner or later you will reap the fruits.
Every person who commits to personal development is contributing towards a better society, a better Grenada.