I love the topics of self development & personal growth. When I say love them, it’s not just like an occasional hobby but a daily habit. Not ONE day goes by that I don't watch, listen, or read something that betters, teaches, and/or inspires me in some way. But it wasn’t always like that.
I was blessed to have parents and a mentor, instruct me and model a life of self development and personal growth. At a very young age they taught me Dr. John Maxwell’s Law of the Lid: Leadership ability is the lid that determines a person’s level of effectiveness.They taught me that not only in classroom could you learn. They taught me not to depend solely on anyone else for MY growth but to go after it on my own. And I will forever be grateful to them for that.
This blog isn't necessarily for the person who already has their five year growth plan outlined or list of the next 20 books they want to read, but rather the person who knows they should be growing, wants to grow but doesn't know where to start.
And honestly it could be overwhelming with all the resources available today. I did some quick searches and here is what I found:
- There are 260,251 book titles on Amazon when I searched ‘self development’.
- There are 2,930,000 videos on YouTube when I search ‘personal growth’.
That’s not including podcasts, life coaches, conferences, leadership programs, etc…
I don’t want you to misinterpret what I’m about to say, I’m all about having a vision and goals for your life. But when starting something new, many times it’s ok to start small and with one thing at a time. It’s like a person who never goes to the gym, all of a sudden they show up on January 1st expecting to lift a crazy heavy amount. It doesn't work like that. You grow into it.
If your the type of person that gets easily overwhelmed, I would like for you to consider the following: just focusing on one. That’s either one podcast, one chapter, one class, one goal, one hour, one day, one step forward.
When I started picking up the habit of reading books, honestly I set myself up to win. How? I picked books about my favorite subjects, by my favorite authors, and the shortest books I could find. Why? Just so I could finish one book. And then I would begin another and another.
Similarly, when I began keeping my personal planner, I did not plan out months in advance but often times one week or even one day. I was young, it was new, other than school and church, I didn’t have much going on. But I knew it wouldn't always be like that. So I would write down what I was going to do tomorrow or when I had an upcoming test. I included events we had coming up at church and then services I was invited to speak at. Next thing you know I’m planning and reading more and more.
What’s your one? What’s one thing you can start doing right now that will move you forward in the right direction?
I have always found it interesting how some people say, “I just don't have enough time.” As if some people get more hours in a day than others. Equally interesting, it’s funny how people have time for NETFLIX but not for their NEXT STEP. Nothing against Netflixs, I enjoy a good tv show as well. But can you imagine what would happen if we took the time we spent on lesser important things and focused them on things that really did matter? Imagine how many books, courses, or videos we could have completed? Imagine how much further you would be in accomplishing your goal. Time management and productivity is another passion of mine. But here is the summary: Don’t be so focused on two or three years form now that you miss out on TODAY.
When I skim through the Bible I see the the theme of TODAY throughout the scriptures beginning from page one. Two examples: Creation happened day by day and in the Lord’s Prayer Jesus teaches us to pray for our daily bread. Could God have created everything in one moment, of course. Could He provide for our weekly, monthly, or yearly bread, yes! But I really believe that He is trying to teach us something, which is: Today matters. It’s ok to start with one. You can break this into smaller pieces. Things that last often were made or built over time.
Psalm 119:105 includes the statement: Your word is a LAMP to my feet. Not a spotlight. The difference? The spotlight reaches and shows you the end and long distance. A lamp doesn’t. A lamp shows you only your next step.
Again if you already have a rhythm for self development and personal growth, then keep at it. But if you don’t and are ready to take responsibility for it, what’s your one? What one goal you want to work on? What’s one podcast you can start listening to? What’s one speaker you would like to learn more from? What’s one subject that you would like to grow in? Start with one but don't stay there.
What happens as you make these small (one) wins? They begin to add up. And one win plus another win plus another win is how momentum and forward movement is produced.
Don’t fear learning or attempting new things, fear being the same person you are today exactly one year from now. A long time ago, I committed to not allowing that happen to me. I refuse to stay the same person, when it comes to my knowledge and skill. To this day, although I reading and taking in more information than ever before, I still catch myself at time focusing on my one. I read one chapter a day, I watch one video from youtube, I sign up for one webinar, etc…
So now it’s up to you. What’s your one?