Self-growth sounds like a straightforward concept, but when we think about it, the need for it sometimes eludes us. Every one of us experiences some kind of negativity in our lives, one way or another. These negative thoughts hinder your optimism and leave you directionless and unable to move toward your goals. Like many others, you must have tried multiple ways and means to shun those negative vibes away. People try to exercise, meditate, do yoga, practice circular breathing, and make willpower-based promises. Still, all of these, although excellent, are hard to maintain consistently without a plan in place. So, what can you do? How and why should you integrate self-growth into your life?
Why Do You Need Self-Growth?
A self-growth plan is an essential aspect of your life, and it’s a critical step necessary to kill the negative vibes around you. You need to set clear goals, work on your mental and physical health, and improve your current lifestyle. As difficult as it may seem, the techniques for personal success are straightforward and satisfying. The problem is, most people don’t think of personal growth as something that you do deliberately but something that happens over time, naturally. That is faulty thinking.
Assuming that you will grow to your full potential by accident is the same as thinking that you can learn Chinese by eating Chinese food. It won’t work.
Now, I mentioned that a self-growth plan is simple at its core, but keep in mind that simple doesn’t mean easy; let me clarify this. From easy things such as exercise, circular breathing, or stretching to significant lifestyle changes like meditation and nutrition optimization, the road to success requires several steps. You can start with one, or you can start with all. But the best thing is just to start.
Schedule your lifestyle
For self-growth, the first and foremost technique is to structure your life patterns. You must create a proper timetable for yourself and plan your day accordingly. A day without purpose is a lost day. A day without advancing the essential things in your life is a day you have wasted. On the contrary, if you have planned and scheduled most of it, you will find it easier to follow and feel more satisfied at the end of the day. Completing the task on your list is a way to grow your self-confidence and believe in yourself and your potential.
Confront your bad habits
Some people who take on the step above start working on themselves but do not necessarily keep up with the schedule. Smoking? Drinking too much? Procrastinating? These are all bad habits that get in the way of your schedule. Remember, just creating the schedule is not enough. You must also remove the things that get in the way of your plan’s execution—the distractions.
For this, you need the self-awareness to understand and recognize your bad habits and work deliberately in reducing or removing them altogether. You cannot overcome a bad habit until you admit it, acknowledge it, and confront it right on. Be open-minded and honest with yourself, and make a list of the bad habits that you believe stand in the way of your success. Try working on them one by one and step by step. Those baby steps will lead you to eradicate one bad habit at a time.
Learn from your mistakes
Nobody’s perfect; we all heard that trope. But it’s true. We all make mistakes all the time. Most of us are so scared of the idea of making a mistake and the potential consequences of it that we’d do anything in our power to prevent the errors before they happen. The problem is that mistakes will happen anyway. By continually focusing on not failing, you don’t learn from your mistakes. This hinders your self-growth. Thus, focus on doing the right things and accept that this will lead to a mistake once in a while. That failure is an opportunity for you to learn, sharpen your judgment, and be better next time. Cherish it as it is a valuable lesson. Never let a mistake pass by without learning how it happened and why. It’s one of the best lessons you’ll ever get.
Keep a check on your dietary habits
A healthy body leads to a healthy mind. I’ve written before about the PEMS framework (physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual) and how the physical dimension is at the base of everything. Even if you are a proponent of dualism, you must agree that the material part of our brains ultimately resides on our bodies, inside our heads. The kind of fuel we pour into our bodies determines how our body will function and, with it, our mind and our emotions. Be mindful of what you eat and drink; be deliberate about what you introduce to your system. Healthy nutritional habits will help you attain mental satisfaction and clarity.
Seek help from self-growth books and videos
Self-help books and videos are not for everyone; I get it. Some people dread “wasting time” getting information about things that they believe they should know naturally. The problem is, most people don’t know or understand the ideas presented in many of these books.
The concepts there have been studied, researched, and experimented with for years and condensed into tomes of information at the tips of your fingers by people who are passionate about them. The authors of these books have dedicated their lives to studying these concepts in-depth and took the time to explain them to us in simple terms.
Ignoring them means being ignorant and too arrogant to accept that somebody knows more about your problems than you do. Imagine you thought the same about math, and instead of learning from your teachers and books, you decided from first grade to self-study. It might work, but it would be a lot harder, wouldn’t it? So, why not give it a shot for your growth and development, which is such a crucial part of your life?
Pursue healthy hobbies
Look, I understand that hobbies are not for everyone. You might not think of yourself as a creative person, so you dismiss hobbies as something that only artsy people do. But what are hobbies, really? They’re something you enjoy doing, something that gets you in the mood and makes you feel good, and, as a result of that, you disconnect from your mundane world and relax.
So, maybe don’t call them hobbies as it might sound too much like a commitment. Call them creation. Even if you are not a creative person, you can create. By exercising, you create a healthier you. By cooking, you create food. Healthy activities involve some sort of creation and are very different from consumption. Watching TV is not a hobby; it is consumption, and it can slowly morph into addiction.
Creation is different. Gardening, knitting, reading, writing, jogging, playing music, or whatever positive hobby you pursue will contribute to your overall self-growth process. This kind of active relaxation is critical to prevent burnout. It will fill you up with energy and pull you away from those negative vibes discussed above.
Recognize and work on your goals
A goal without a plan is just a wish. A plan without an end goal that is clearly defined is also meaningless. You need both. Once you have them, you need action. Define your goals and brainstorm all the possibilities to make them turn into reality. By making a small step every day toward your goals, you will feel your self-confidence grow, and you will get a deep sense of accomplishment. Growth is not done in a vacuum. It’s a result of your action, and when action is motivated by positive goals and a higher purpose behind those goals, you have a recipe for success.
Meditate and spend more time with yourself
The last but not the least technique is to allocate more thoughtful time to yourself. Being alone with your own thoughts during meditation or yoga sessions opens up the gates to self-reflection and self-awareness. We cannot focus inwardly in the middle of our busy days and while giving our attention to our loved ones.
You need some alone time, and one great way to do so is through exercise, meditation, yoga, or, as mentioned above, working on your favorite hobby. Don’t underestimate the power of being with yourself, even if the thought of listening to your own thoughts for too long might sound scary. Learn to allow them to manifest and let yourself feel them and understand them. They’re there for a reason. Listen to them, and you will become better at understanding your own purpose in life.
So, there you go; a handful of steps that seem small and perhaps even silly, but when stringed together time and time again, over and over again, could lead to massive changes in your life. Adopting these techniques will help you gain spiritual peace and a direction towards personal success. However, these methods all by themselves won’t provide you with the complete growth that you need, but they are necessary steppingstones toward creating the headspace you need to make greater, lasting changes.
Start with these, and others will follow. Be deliberate and design your life with intent, and greater things will begin to appear in abundance. Once you toss the negativity away and gain the inner peace I talked about, you will attain the clarity you need to move forward.
Enjoy the journey! It will be long and, perhaps, harsh, but, in the end, always fulfilling.
Now, before you go, I have…
3 Questions For You
- Do you think self-growth is important and why?
- What are the biggest impediments to your own self-growth?
- What self-growth technique has been most effective for you?
Please share your answers in the comments below. Sharing knowledge helps us all improve and get better!
Hi there! I’m Iulian, and I want to thank you for reading my article. There’s a lot more if you stick around. I write about personal development, productivity, fiction writing, and more. Also, I’ve created Self-Growth Journey, a free program that helps you get unstuck and create the beautiful life you deserve. Enjoy!