Invest and Plan for Personal Growth

by Sep 1, 2017Cornerstone content, Growth

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Your personal development is only just beginning
when you leave school or university.
Plan and budget for it today because you will
certainly need to invest in yourself throughout your life.

Personal development and growth started when you are born and capable of little except the bodily functions necessary to survive. How different you became as you reached adulthood. You became independent (more or less), communicative, a thinker and a doer. Above all, you became a world changer to a lesser or greater degree.

These huge personal changes come about because you seek out and absorb the messages from the world about you. You assess them, remember them and act on them.

Teachers and lessons in personal development

Your recoveries from your falls provide some of your most noteworthy messages and learnings. For this reason, the stories of your falls and recoveries become your most valuable assets.

Your parents taught you how to survive and thrive. Friends, teachers and colleagues taught you about the rules and values of your world. They told you about the culture you are born into, its do’s and don’ts.

Teachers, lecturers, mentors, employers, friends, books and television all contributed to your personal development. They will certainly continue to do so.

Money has been a integral part of your life since adolescence. One of money’s least recognised roles is that of teacher. It can, if you listen, teach you a huge amount about yourself. Money can and should play a key role in the development of your personal integrity.

In time, you start to teach as well as to learn, which is the best way we have of learning. You begin to teach others from your own learnings, experience and mistakes.

Throughout your life you will continue to learn and develop. You also develop your own integrity by learning about who you are when life tests you in different situations. This is how you grow and change from infant dependency to mature, creative, influential adulthood. Without personal development you would remain in childhood, wasting your potential and remaining dependent on others.

Structured personal development

It is important to absorb the random lessons, experiences and teachings life throws you on an ad hoc basis. It is equally important to develop skills and abilities, and to explore new worlds, ideas, and ways of doing things. Do this in adulthood in the same structured way that you learn at school and university.

It is important to set aside personal funds for this. You should probably invest in a significant, residential high-end retreat every five years or so. Alternatively, attend a couple of one or two day conferences each year. Join shorter courses, seminars or workshops as well. These may be online or offline. Read avidly. Its rare that you won’t come out without something to show for it.

Jeremy Deedes, founder of Living Money, tells of his time in 2010 spent in the Tuscan hills on a business retreat. One of his tasks was to formulate his own Unique Brilliance Zone. It took 48 hours of solitude and reflection to work out that his was to collect and absorb information, connect with people and share and use ideas as a catalyst to bring about change in people and organisations. A minute more for his Damascene revelation that this was not really what he was doing at the time. It made him realise things had to change if he was going to align his business and his passion.

Education does not end at school or university; you, rather than an employer, will have to invest in yourself throughout your life, so budget for it.

Planned growth and development

Of course you need to plan your life and finances to achieve this level of personal development, and this is where your life and financial plan comes in to play. It enables you to identify your needs, plan to bridge your skills gap and ensure money is available to fund it.

And it may not be confined to course and conferences. You might feel that a course of sessions with a counsellor or coach or mentor might be appropriate. bear in mind this still needs to be planned and paid for.

In fact, you can turn this around and say that the most important aim of financial life planning is actually personal growth and development.

That’s why life planning is an important element in this theme. Consequently, we write much about personal development and growth through planning, as well as writing about integrity, obstacles to growth and skills.

Staying still is not an option, not least because you won’t fill your full potential to change the lives of others for the better. Planning for growth and personal development will ensure this does not happen.

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