Focus on your potential instead of your limitations.
We talk about self-development and personal growth quite a bit here. Today, I would like to share some things that I have picked up from my own reading and quest for self-improvement. Below, are 10 important principles to becoming a dedicated self-developer, based on John Maxwell’s The Success Journey. Each of these is worthy of its own separate blog-post, but I will only give a quick synopsis, today. I will elaborate on each of these at a later date.
1. Chose a Life of Growth. When you dedicate yourself to continual growth, you cannot help but keep moving forward. As soon as you think you can begin to coast, or rest. or work just enough to maintain what you have already achieved, that is when you will begin to slide backward.
2. Grow Today. Procrastination is the death of your ambition and dreams. Some day has never been recognized as a day of the week. Growth will not occur automatically. Growth today will help provide for a better tomorrow. Growth is your responsibility! If you do not take up the mantle of that responsibility, growth will never occur.
3. Be Teachable. How many people miss out on so many opportunities because they cannot do this? John Wooden is attributed with saying, “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.” He recognized that the greatest obstacle to anyone’s growth wasn’t ignorance, but just the opposite. It was knowledge. People who think they know it all, become unteachable and unreachable. They have stalled themselves out, and can no longer grow or improve.
4. The goal is: Self-Development, Not Self-Fulfillment. Self-fulfillment is all about feeling good, personally. With self- development, feeling good is one of the byproduct, not the goal. Self-development is a higher calling, it is the development of your true potential so that you can attain the purpose for which you have been created.
5. Stay Hungry. Never stay satisfied with your current accomplishments, only. This does not mean that those accomplishments are unimportant. Quite the contrary. Previous accomplishments are the foundation of what come next. Thinking that you have arrived when you accomplish a goal has the same effect as believing that you already know it all (see #3). It removes any desire to learn further. Successful people know that wins and losses are both absolutely temporary. So, no matter how successful you have been today, don’t use that as an excuse to become complacent tomorrow. Stay hungry! Don’t settle into your comfort zone as a permanent place of residence. From success, move on to greater growth.
6. Be a Lifetime Learner. To keep moving forward, you need to become a perpetual learner. You will have to set aside time for this. As Henry Ford said, “It’s been my observation that most successful people get ahead during the time other people waste.” Learning something every day is the essence of being a continual learner.
7. Narrow Your Focus. Concentrate on a few major themes. Give your time and energy only to the themes at the heart of your life. Where you decide to focus your attention will depend on your goal, how you wish to help others and what it means for you, specifically, to reach your potential.
8. Make a Growth Plan. One of the keys to life is developing a plan. You know, plan your work and work your plan. Earl Nightingale said, “If a person will spend one hour a day on the same subject for five years, that person will be an expert on that subject.” Your specific method isn’t as important as committing to doing it daily.
9. Everything has a Price. Growth, like most of the other important things in your life, will require discipline. It will take some time away from your leisure activities. It will cost some money to get the materials. And, it can get a little lonely sometimes. But growth is always worth the price you pay because the alternative to live your life feeling unfulfilled. Living as though there is more you should be doing, or could be doing, but not getting it done.
10. Look for ways to Apply What You Learn. If you put your new-found knowledge from your daily lessons into a real life application, you have a greater chance of successfully making new habits instead of fresh wishes. Engage your new habit for 21 days, and it becomes part of you. As you continue to grow in this way, and continue to learn new skills and be exposed to new ideas, you never stagnate or backslide.
Every day you think about what you’d like to do, who you’d like to become. The only way to start the process for real is to make a plan, commit to it and start!
What is your dream?
What is holding you back?
PS- No need for a disclaimer. I am not associated with John Maxwell, nor do I get any remuneration from his books. TY.