What is Personal Development?

Christina Edwards

Personal development is a way for an individual to set goals and improve his life. It typically requires a person to evaluate his life at the present, which helps to determine where he wants to be in the future. Every personal development is different, depending on the person. It usually, however, involves some sort of plan to get the most out of life.

Learning different cooking skills is part of personal development for many young adults.
Learning different cooking skills is part of personal development for many young adults.

Positive growth is often the desired outcome of most personal development plans, and they are usually geared toward improving an individual's life. It often includes certain actions that a person must do to reach a certain goal in his life or, in some cases, multiple goals. This can include such things as education, career, lifestyle, or relationships. While some people may be more interested in a secure financial future, others may be more interested in being surrounded by love and friendship as they grow older.

Personal development goals may focus on relationship issues.
Personal development goals may focus on relationship issues.

Most life coaching experts agree that the first step to developing a decent personal development plan is to perform an honest self-evaluation. During this time, a person should try to get a better understanding of himself. Things such as priorities, strengths, weaknesses, values, and ethics should be explored by looking at the past and present. From there, a plan can be developed to help attain future goals and lead a more fulfilling, happy life.

Personal development often focuses on quitting harmful habits.
Personal development often focuses on quitting harmful habits.

Like personal development goals, every personal development plan is different. It is a highly individualized process, as many people have different goals and abilities and different ways they can achieve these goals. No matter how different, however, every plan of this sort requires patience, dedication, and consistency. Achieving goals hardly ever happens overnight, or even within a few months. It can take years, or even a lifetime, to happen.

Personal development in childhood may take the form of participation in athletic activities.
Personal development in childhood may take the form of participation in athletic activities.

For a self-improvement plan to work properly, an individual must be willing to work hard to realize his aspirations. Doing it alone, though, can be a very overwhelming task. Many experts advise that individuals following a personal development plan enlist the help of family, friends, teachers, co-workers, or any other people that may be able to help and support them.

Some individuals may prefer to hire a life coach. While there is technically no training required to become a life coach, this practice follows many simple guidelines of psychology, sociology, mentoring, and different types of counseling. Instead of analyzing the past, life coaches claim to assist their clients by supporting them and helping them set and reach certain goals.

Changes in a person's lifestyle are part of their development.
Changes in a person's lifestyle are part of their development.

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