Personal growth can help you make your life feel more enjoyable, fulfilling, and rewarding. However, if you can’t quite put your finger on your goals, or don’t know how to express them, where do you begin?
The key element to beginning a personal growth journey is setting your priorities. What does that mean. There are many great and wonderful things you can get done in a five year time span, but you will not be able to accomplish all of these things in five months. You have to decide which things are important to get done when. What order do you need to set out the steps to get to your desired end?
Expend your earliest efforts in working toward your goals as effectively as possible:
1. Where are you? Measure your current situation.
- Think about a typical day in your life.
- Then think about a typical weekend.
- Write down whatever comes to mind. A short list might look like this:
- Get up for work. I hate getting up this early and I hate my job.
- In the shower I am thinking about how I am going to pay my electric bill and still go out with my friends this weekend.
- I don’t like my body.
- Driving to work- I love my car
- Get home. The dog peed on the carpet, again.
- Watch TV. I do not really like watching television, but I do not have anything else to do.
- And so on.
2. Rate each of these experiences.
- On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being absolutely perfect, rate each of your thoughts.
- It is in the low-rated parts of your life that are dragging yourself down.
- Avoid wasting your time in the beginning of this process on trying to raise a 7 to a 10.
- It is the 1s, 2s, and 3s that are wreaking havoc.
- Until you are able to raise everything up to at least a 5, stick with the lower-rated items on your list.
3. Find your 10.
- Let us assume that you have decided that your weight is a big issue.
- You have rated it a “2”, because it negatively impacts your self confidence and your self-esteem.
- And, you know that it will also eventually becoming a health issue.
- What do you envision as the perfect alternative? Write a story to and for yourself:
- I’m on the bathroom scale, and my weight is 170 pounds.
- This is the perfect weight for me.
- I look and feel good in my clothes.
- My doctor is pleased with my cholesterol and blood pressure numbers.
- People are starting to notice me again.
- I have the confidence to hang out with friends this weekend.
- Now you have an objective that clearly addresses a challenging part of your life.
4. Look at the people in your life.
- If you want to enhance any part of your life, there will always be people who attempt to hold you back.
- They may not be doing it intentionally, but it will happen.
- It can be very difficult to kick some people out of your life, like your parents, but many other people are optional.
- You may need to add people to your life.
- Sticking with our example, maybe you need a personal trainer or a few friends that have successfully lost weight.
- A few friends at the gym will be helpful, too.
5. What else do you need to be successful?
- A cookbook with healthy recipes?
- A gym membership?
- A jump rope?
- Compare your needs with your current resources. Can you bridge the gap?
6. Focus on your habits.
- Your current situation is result of years of less-than-great habits.
- Better habits provide better outcomes.
- Make small changes to your daily habits.
- Then it’s just a matter of being compliant and patient.
7. Learn to be comfortable with discomfort.
- The quicker you wish to change, the more discomfort you will face.
- You will have to choose. You will either have to slow down or accept that discomfort is part of the deal.
- The ability to deal with uncomfortable feelings grows with practice.
It is a daunting challenge to try change every aspect of your life all at once, so do not even try!
Focus on the most negative parts of your life first.
You can then turn your attention to the less-critical items.
Beginning a personal growth journey is an exciting time.
You can do this!