In terms of growing up, change is inevitable; there is a change for the better, and there is a change for the worse, and I have encountered both. However, throughout these changes, I noticed something significant, and that is that one cannot change what happens around one. Life is simply out of our control, and the only thing that we are in control of is ourselves. With this thought in mind, I concluded that I would focus on the change I could control. In other words, I decided to focus on the value of personal development. I define personal development as working on every part of oneself to make one better than he or she was before.
Upon searching the internet for the definition of personal development, various definitions are available. For example, one definition I found on a website called SkillsYouNeed is, “Personal development is a lifelong process. It is a way for people to assess their skills and qualities, consider their aims in life and set goals in order to realize and maximize their potential” (Kirkwood 10). Most of the definitions for personal development are very similar and contain complementary components. However, looking deeper into what personal development consists of, one will find that it focuses on all different parts of the self. Kelly Clark pointed out these areas as mental, social, spiritual, emotional, and physical. Therefore, if one focuses on improving any of those particular areas, he or she contributes to personal development.
How did personal development come into my life? Personal development has always been present in my mind, but the level of importance has changed as I aged. I believe that the first time it appeared in my head was when I was in kindergarten. My kindergarten year was significant because I had moved from Oklahoma City to Kansas City, and it was a considerable change. I knew that I had to learn new skills to be able to adjust to this new environment. This change was only the beginning; I, later on, ended up switching schools five more times where I was socially detached. Each time I switched schools, I learned about new experiences on how to make myself better.
A large portion of those experiences came from new people that I met, and when I learned about situations they had dealt with, I applied that knowledge to my personal development. Changing schools and meeting new people is what got my value of personal development to start growing. Still, it is not what made me believe that the value of personal development was more important than all the other values. The moment I realized that personal development was the most important value was when my father passed away. In March 2020, during my senior year in high school, my father took his life. When I heard those words come out of my mother’s mouth, I was so emotional and knew my life was forever changed. I was emotionally drained as something like this devastating makes one look at the bigger picture. When looking at the bigger picture, one can see how short life is and how important it is to try to be better than he or she was yesterday.
Personal development, for me, is something that I will live by for the rest of my life. I will always be determined to be better than I was yesterday. According to the knowledge I’ve gained from my experiences, everyone has an innate need for personal growth, which manifests itself in the form of a process known as self-actualization (Fallatah and Syed 21). As a result, I’ve devised a series of actions to take to manage my own personal development journey. First and foremost, I have established a vision, which I believe is critical to my own development and growth. On the other hand, many of us have it by pushing ourselves to develop and learn when we have a specific vision in mind. In order to achieve my personal vision, which is a distinct notion of where I want to get into a few months or even years and reasons for being there, I had first to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. Developing this vision has significantly aided my personal development.
I can plan my own development to achieve my goals by conducting a personal SWOT analysis. Once an individual has a clear picture of where he or she wants to go, they or can start thinking about how to get there. Although creating a personal growth plan is not required, doing so makes the planning process more practical. The process of improvement has been beneficial to me in terms of my personal development. In order to better themselves and achieve their goals, many people continue to improve their personal development capabilities throughout their life. Following the advice of a mentor, pursuing education, engaging in self-help, being driven, and having reasons for my own development in place has helped me a lot as I was able to get over the stress of my father’s death. Finally, I find that keeping a record of my own progress is a good idea regularly. My performance in learning and development is enhanced because I record significant changes as they occur, allowing me to reflect on my accomplishments later when I evaluate and modify my development plans.
My father’s death and subsequent change of schools have provided me with the opportunity to master more advanced abilities. My development plans included spending a significant amount of effort on social development. When dealing with people, I discovered that I lacked soft skills because of changing schools and the trauma of my father’s death. As a result, these skills are essential in the field, and I wanted to enhance them to avoid a skill mismatch in school and work. Improving my capacity to communicate successfully with others was one of the major purposes of my personal development plan. I have made changes to the way I connect with others this semester, paying greater attention to my encounters with individuals. I attained my aim by obtaining a political position as a leader in one of the school’s clubs. Because I was responsible for expressing the club members’ requests and concerns to the club leaders, this role has also aided me in developing communication skills. Having extra responsibilities outside of school has also helped me become a better listener and a more focused person.
In addition, I hoped to increase my social contacts both on and off college. To attain this aim, I decided to engage in extracurricular activities, which proved to be an excellent strategy. Since I am not particularly athletic, choosing a sport or a club was difficult. In any case, I was aware of the significance of this and so opted to join the softball team, where I have developed into an active and good softball player over time. Stress management has been made easier for me by participating in extracurricular activities and being a part of a social group outside of the classroom. It has also assisted me in forgetting about my father’s passing by allowing me to relax more actively and lead a more productive life. Participating on the softball team has shown to be profitable and advantageous in a variety of ways.
Overall, I have discovered that I have untapped potential that I have been neglecting. Previously, I could not find time to participate in things other than classwork, despite the fact that I did not perform extraordinarily well. I have learned that I can live a more holistic life without sacrificing my time for my academic pursuits. I discovered that my bad academic achievement had been caused by a lack of practice or perhaps a complete lack of practice in school. It has also demonstrated to me that personal skills are vital and that learning them is not as tough as I had previously believed. Getting hands-on experience in the business is important in determining success. I intended to work part-time in my leisure time to augment my schooling with practical experience. This stage is incomplete owing to my inability to find work in my field. In my perspective, the job I got was in vehicle sales, which was not ideal for putting my abilities to use. I spent more time than I gained knowledge and expertise. To ensure that experience is gained in the most appropriate industry and position, I will devote more time to job hunting in my next personal development plan.
Thus, the continuous process of evaluating my life objectives and principles and improving my abilities and characteristics for attaining my full potential has significantly aided my personal development. The deeds have contributed to my success, maturity, and satisfaction in many ways. Personal product through a plan is quite significant in that it allows for the tracking of developmental changes required to attain defined goals, which is extremely beneficial. An individual’s ability to set goals and evaluate how they will be attained is greatly facilitated by the effort of planning ahead of time.
Fallatah, Rodwan Hashim Mohammed, and Jawad Syed. “A Critical Review of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.” Employee Motivation in Saudi Arabia, 2018, pp. 19-59, Web.
Herman, Marie. “Creating a Personal SWOT Analysis.” MRH Enterprises LLC. Fecha de consulta 20, 2017, Web.
Kirkwood, Jordan. “The Case for Personal Development.” Perspectives: Policy and Practice in Higher Education, 2019, Web.