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Last Updated on November 27, 2020

How to Commit to Self-Development for Continuous Growth

How to Commit to Self-Development for Continuous Growth

Everyone wants to improve themselves, and we all want to grow in all aspects of our lives. All of us aspire for self-development for continuous growth. However, committing to it is a different thing altogether. Now, you may be wondering how you can be committed to your self-development.

The answers you seek are in these 7 tips on how you can be committed to your self-development for continuous growth. After mastering these strategies, you will gain control of your destiny and feel supercharged.

1. Build Self-Development Through Knowledge

Do you often feel unprepared or find yourself making frequent mistakes?

Self-development is taking action to replace doubt with knowledge. Continuous growth means expanding beyond your comfort level and continually gaining new information to accomplish your goals.

And what about days when you seem to make one error after another? The truth is, mistakes will occur—it happens for everyone. If the fault is yours, own up to it, and let it go. As author Maya Angelou says:

“When you know better, you do better.”

2. Visualize Your Potential for Personal Growth

Are you struggling to understand the next steps in achieving your goals?

Growth comes from knowing how to manifest your aspirations. Imagining anticipated success brings clarity and reveals the actions needed to achieve your objective.

Begin by breaking larger goals down into realistic steps: If a vision seems too large, it may feel out of reach. Practice visualizing your purpose any time you feel stuck, and stay open to making adjustments along the way.

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3. Develop Self-Confidence and Expand Your Abilities

When was the last time you volunteered for a project before being asked? Does hesitation hold you back from success?

Having confidence means believing in yourself and your unique expertise. Take a moment and repeat the following:

“I am worth it. I value my position at work. I deserve to be successful.”

Say it often and with conviction because your brain will interpret it as fact and you will soon believe it.

Remind yourself of your strengths. Start by focusing on smaller abilities then build-up to bigger ones:

I am a great cook. I am an amazing singer. I am an invaluable executive.

Do You Think About Giving Up and Walking Away?

Wanting to resign may be a sign of low self-esteem on the job. When life gets overwhelming, the impulse to walk away can be strong, but before giving up, ask yourself 3 questions:

  • Why do I want to leave?
  • How will it benefit me to ditch this right now?
  • Who will I let down if I quit?

Self-growth naturally happens when you push through, so remind yourself that feelings are temporary. Take a break and contemplate the big picture because it is easy to lose the ability to think clearly in the heat of the moment.

Consider finding an accountability partner for motivation, decide that giving up is not an option, and stay focused on your goals.

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4. Grow Your Productivity by Making a Plan

Do you struggle with managing your time? Is procrastination a constant challenge?

Poor time management will slow your growth.

The simplest way to start improving in this area is by creating a plan and sticking to it. Using a daily organizer or calendar will help you become more efficient and stay on track.

According to Trevor Bibic a personal trainer:[1]

“Good time managers take a few minutes at the start of their day to prioritize tasks and consider how much time is needed to perform them.”

When filling out your planner, note daily, weekly, and monthly items, and include all deadlines, personal appointments, and meetings. Know how long these events will take and schedule appropriately.

At the same time, do not be too strict with your time. Avoid filling in every block of time or you will set yourself up for failure. Structure your day around what needs to be done, but stay flexible and leave room for unknowns that may pop up—they always do.

5. Improve Your Focus and Make Big Strides

Is focus a challenge? Are you easily distracted at work?

Interruptions may be all around you—the beautiful sun shining through the window, a conversation between co-workers, and even conflicts at home are a distraction from work. Staying focused takes mental strength and requires mastering the art of avoiding distractions, but it will keep you productive.

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Here are 4 tips:

  • Remind yourself of the significance of your job. Knowing its value will improve your focus.
  • Reduce the chance of being distracted. Keep your cell phone on vibrate or tucked away.
  • Concentrate on just one task at a time. This will tighten your focus and reduce feeling overwhelmed.
  • Use noise-canceling headphones or earbuds. If possible, block out all office chatter and noise.

6. Create Routines to Reduce Stress and Expand Growth

Is getting up in the morning and out the door on time a daily stressor?

If growth in this area is needed, a morning routine is definitely in order. Indumathi Bendi, M.D., a primary care physician at Piedmont says:[2]

“Carrying out routine activities reduces stress by making the situation appear more controllable and predictable. Preparedness is a key way to prevent stress.”

That sounds good on paper, but how do you make it happen in real life? Follow the early bird catches the worm concept. Rising earlier will give you time to get ready, process what the day has in store, and focus mentally.

Starting your day earlier also means you can finally get in that workout, eat breakfast, and stop worrying about traffic making you late.

Here are 3 ideas for your morning routine:

  • Set your alarm for 15 minutes earlier. There’s no need to conquer Mt. Everest in a single day. Each week thereafter, increase the time by 15 minutes until you arrive at your wake-up goal.
  • Keep your alarm clock out of reach. Getting up to turn it off will literally have you out of bed and on the go.
  • Once awake, immediately make your bed. It is far less appealing to crawl back under the covers when you have taken the time to make your bed look so tidy.

Are You Staying Healthy by Getting Enough Sleep at Night?

Creating a bedtime practice that allows you to get the recommended 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night is a game-changer. Any sleep expert will tell you having healthy nighttime habits is essential for good sleep. Be patient since it could take 3 to 4 weeks to establish a solid routine, and there may be occasional setbacks.

Here are 3 ideas for your evening routine:

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  • Set a regular bedtime each night. Stay as consistent as possible.
  • Wind down in the evening. Be intentional about skipping things that energize, such as caffeine, exercise, conversations, or upbeat music.
  • Avoid bringing your cell phone to bed. Blue light emitted by electronic devices is known to interfere with sleep hormones, so keep it tucked away.

7. Increase Energy by Challenging Your Body and Mind

Do you often find yourself dragging at work with no idea how to make it to five o’clock?

Sir Isaac Newton’s First Law states:[3]

“A body at rest will remain at rest, and a body in motion will remain in motion unless it is acted upon by an external force.”

That concept is great in theory, but how do you stay energized at work when being in constant motion is not an option?

Try the following:

  • Organize a snack drawer or lunch box. Eating healthy foods (fruits, nuts, yogurt, protein bars) throughout the day keeps your body energized by increasing blood flow and brain function.
  • Stay hydrated. This will invigorate your body and the mind, but avoid too many caffeinated drinks, which can lift you up then make you crash hard.
  • Take a walk. The movement and oxygen will boost your energy and provide exercise, which is always a plus for the mind and body.
  • Try a 5-minute meditation. Find a private, quiet place to sit then get comfortable and close your eyes. Wiggle your toes, stretch your back, let your body relax, and focus on slowing down your breathing until you feel rejuvenated.

Final Thoughts

The key to continual growth and reaching your goals is in taking specific action steps.

Sit down and do a realistic self-assessment of different areas in your life—education, aspirations, beliefs, focus, and daily habits. Be honest with yourself, and identify where there is room for improvement. By taking ownership of your life, you are setting a course to accomplish anything you desire.

Start by committing to these 7 tips on how you can be committed to self-development and watch your success skyrocket!

More on Self-Development

Featured photo credit: Sharon McCutcheon via unsplash.com

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Reference

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Nancy Solari

Nancy Solari is an accomplished CEO, life coach, and motivational speaker.

6 Most Important Emotional Intelligence Skills To Have 7 Ways To Expand Your Horizon And Push For New Frontiers How to Start Journaling for Self- Development (6 Simple Ways) How To Take Back Your Life When Things Get Out of Control How to Commit to Self-Development for Continuous Growth

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Published on May 11, 2021

20 Best Books on Personal Development

20 Best Books on Personal Development

Let’s face it—transformation isn’t always easy. Getting from where you are to where you want to be in life requires a lot of personal growth and development. It can require everything from letting go of old beliefs to speaking up for yourself and setting boundaries to even recognizing your own unmet needs. These aren’t exactly skills we’re taught in school, so it can be incredibly overwhelming to even know where to start.

A few decades ago, most personal development information was locked behind thousand-dollar seminars and coaching programs. Fortunately, the industry has absolutely exploded in the last decade, and a large part of that is driven by books. For under $15 or with a library card, we now have access to priceless wisdom from some of the most brilliant minds and best books on personal development.

By reading the words of experts in the field, we literally can think their thoughts and benefit from decades of experience to improve our own lives. So, how do you get started?

Here are the 20 best books on personal development that can completely transform your life.

(Links are listed for accessibility, but remember to check your local library to see if these books are available for free. And don’t forget to support your local bookstore, if possible.)

1. The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity by Julia Cameron

    Celebrated by everyone from Martin Scorsese to Elizabeth Gilbert, The Artist’s Way has been one of the most important books for artists and non-artists alike for decades. It guides you through a 12-week process of morning journaling and self-dates to unlock all of your blocks to creativity and intuition and live a life that feels like you.

    Whether you are an artist or not, this is an insightful book that will bring so much clarity to what you really want out of life and why you’ve been holding yourself back.

    Get the book here!

    2. The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are by Brené Brown

      Researcher and storyteller Brené Brown has been a leader in studying vulnerability. In The Gifts of Imperfection, she shares research and encouragement that helps you release the definition of who you think you’re supposed to be to become who you actually already are.

      Brené encourages you to let go of shame, open up to vulnerability, and live a more authentic life. This is an inspiring and important book for anyone struggling with the shame of being radically yourself.

      Get the book here!

      3. Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek

        In Start with Why, author and TED speaker Simon Sinek shares the secret that united Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers—they all started with “why.” They realized that people won’t truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the “why” behind it.

        While this book is primarily focused on work or business, Start with Why makes a compelling case for the power behind a strong motivation that people can get behind and how it can inspire more innovation and support.

        Get the book here!

        4. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

          For decades, psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi has famously studied the concept of “flow”—the highly-focused psychological state that Olympic athletes, great artists, and brilliant scientists all find themselves in at moments of groundbreaking success.

          By breaking down decades of research into bite-sized actions, Flow reveals the process to create this state for yourself and get “in the zone” to achieve your optimal potential.

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          Get the book here!

          5. The HeartMath Solution: The Institute of HeartMath’s Revolutionary Program for Engaging the Power of the Heart’s Intelligence by Doc Lew Childre and Howard Martin

            Touted by Deepak Chopra as the book that “saves you years of therapy,” The HeartMath Solution pulls together decades of Institute of HeartMath research on how to be less stressed and make better decisions, making it one of the best books on personal development.

            This practical, easy read will change the way you view the relationship between your head and heart. The techniques in the book are incredibly simple and can help you calm down from some of the stressful moments in a matter of seconds to tap back into your best decision-making.

            Get the book here!

            6. The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller

              If you’re overwhelmed by too many things to do and never seem to accomplish the stuff that really matters to you, then this is an invaluable book. The ONE Thing argues that until your most important task is completed, everything else is a distraction that diffuses your energy and makes you frantic.

              This book helps you focus on what you really care about and want to accomplish and then, organize your life around accomplishing the “one thing” before moving on to something else. This is one of the best books for personal development, especially for anyone who’s struggling with overwhelm and productivity.

              Get the book here!

              7. Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself by Melody Beattie

                Codependent No More has been an international bestseller for more than 30 years, and the reason is that we all struggle with codependency somewhere in our lives.

                Whether it looks like addiction, people-pleasing, taking care of everyone around you, or just not giving yourself enough self-care, this book unpacks the roots of codependency and helps you break free once-and-for-all.

                This is an important book for anyone having challenges in friendships or relationships or struggling with people-pleasing or addiction.

                Get the book here!

                8. The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph by Ryan Holiday

                  Presenting ancient Stoic wisdom to a modern audience, The Obstacle Is the Way shows you how to turn your obstacles and challenges into massive opportunities.

                  Ryan Holiday draws from the same ancient philosophy that empowered John D. Rockefeller, Amelia Earhart, and Steve Jobs to succeed and breaks down the essential formula for not running away from obstacles but actually running toward them.

                  This is a really empowering book for anyone struggling with obstacles to get what they want.

                  Get the book here!

                  9. Real Help: An Honest Guide to Self-Improvement by Ayodeji Awosika

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                    Real Help isn’t your usual self-help book. Wildly popular Medium writer Ayodeji Awosika takes a no-BS, tough-love approach to developing mental toughness, finding clarity, and taking action to transform your life.

                    This is a great book if you’ve read dozens of self-help or personal development books but haven’t taken action to change your life. Real Help gets right to the point and gives you actionable steps to start implementing change right away.

                    Get the book here!

                    10. Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes

                      Year of Yes is a deeply personal and honest account of how the creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal Shonda Rhimes started saying yes to everything that scared her.

                      This inspiring and raw memoir makes you reflect on what you’ve been avoiding or making excuses for out of fear and what would really happen if you started saying yes to all the stuff that terrifies you. It’s a relatable, casual, easy read, and is great for anyone who needs a little inspiration to start saying yes to life.

                      Get the book here!

                      11. The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level by Gay Hendricks

                        Psychologist Gay Hendricks unpacks why we all seem to self-sabotage when we’re so close to success and what it will take to leap to a life where you’re in your “Zone of Genius.”

                        In this highly motivating book on personal development, you’ll walk step by step on how to “go beyond your internal limits, release outdated fears, and learn a whole new set of powerful skills and habits to liberate your authentic greatness.”

                        Get the book here!

                        12. Power vs. Force: The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior (5.2.1985) by David R. Hawkins

                          Hailed by Mother Teresa, Lee Iacocca, and Sam Walton, Power vs. Force combines spirituality and cutting-edge research to help you understand your emotions and level of consciousness.

                          In this seminal work, David Hawkins explains how to get a yes or no answer to any question you ask and how to understand what you’re feeling and why so that you can begin to change your life and the world around you.

                          While it’s not exactly a light beach read, this book is really eye-opening for those wanting to explore spirituality as part of their personal development.

                          Get the book here!

                          13. What I Know for Sure by Oprah Winfrey

                            Personal development as we know it would not be the same without Oprah Winfrey. For 14 years, Oprah shared her greatest wisdom in a monthly column for O, The Oprah Magazine called “What I Know for Sure.” This book collects all of those essays—a lifetime of Oprah’s greatest experiences and lessons—into a comprehensive work.

                            What I Know for Sure is honest, thoughtful, and deeply inspiring. This is a powerful book for devout Oprah Winfrey fans and soon-to-be fans alike.

                            Get the book here!

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                            14. Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins

                              In this memoir, Navy SEAL David Goggins recounts his own life story from poverty, prejudice, and physical abuse to becoming one of the world’s top endurance athletes and military icon through pure will.

                              Can’t Hurt Me will inspire you to stretch and persevere to defy even the most improbably odds and realize that when you think you’re completely tapped out, you’ve only tapped into 40% of your capabilities—and there’s still so much more you can do.

                              It’s an inspiring, tough love book that will motivate you to take action toward your dreams.

                              Get the book here!

                              15. The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

                                In The Happiness Project, writer Gretchen Rubin documents her entire year of testing out research, classical philosophy, and common wisdom to find out what makes her truly happy.

                                This casual and accessibly written book inspires you to design your own happiness project to transform each area of your life as you follow Gretchen’s journey and contemplate research on happiness.

                                If you’re looking for an inspiring structure to change every aspect of your life, The Happiness Project is an easy read that can inspire you to experiment with what makes you happy.

                                Get the book here!

                                16. Unlimited Power: The New Science Of Personal Achievement by Tony Robbins

                                  The name Tony Robbins has been synonymous with personal development. In Unlimited Power, he reveals the exact techniques he has used to help Olympic athletes, movie stars, and heads of state to harness their own untapped power.

                                  This book breaks down complicated neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) techniques into simple visualizations that anyone can learn in literally minutes to start to change the way your mind processes information. If you’re looking to change your thinking or step into more confidence, this is an important book to not overlook.

                                  Get the book here!

                                  17. The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work by Shawn Achor

                                    In The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor flips conventional wisdom on its head. It’s not that we’ll be happy when we’re successful. It’s that we’ll actually be successful when we’re happy.

                                    Shawn presents research that shows us how to rewire our brains for positivity and optimism to be happier in our lives, our careers, and even our health. He also breaks down actionable strategies to retrain our brains, build a solid support network, and spread positive change to the people around us.

                                    If you’re looking to retrain your brain for happiness and success, this is definitely a worthwhile book to consider.

                                    Get the book here!

                                    18. Energy Leadership: Transforming Your Workplace and Your Life from the Core by Bruce D. Schneider

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                                      Renowned coach Bruce D. Schneider doesn’t just tell you what energy leadership is—he shows you. In Energy Leadership, Bruce recounts the story of how he helped a client to transform his failing business by systematically changing the energy of the business.

                                      At each new level, there are specific emotions, actions, and predictable arguments. By the end of the book, you’ll be able to identify exactly which level of energy leadership every relationship, job, and friendship in your life is at and how to begin transforming it for the better.

                                      It’s an eye-opening look at why we’re stuck where we are and how we can shift ourselves and those around us to get extraordinary results.

                                      Get the book here!

                                      19. Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert

                                        Bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert digs into her own creative process in Big Magic to unpack the mysterious and spiritual nature of inspiration. She discusses the habits needed to cultivate creativity, go after our deepest desires, and confront our fears.

                                        With a casual, poetic tone and lots of encouragement, Big Magic inspires you to find the magic inside—whether that’s to create art, start a new business, or bring more mindfulness and passion to our everyday lives.

                                        If you’re looking for more inspiration and creativity, this is an important book to reignite that fire within.

                                        Get the book here!

                                        20. Enough Already: Create Success on Your Own Terms by Mike Iamele

                                          I’d be remiss if I didn’t include my own book on this list.

                                          Enough Already is a battle cry for the success seekers who are fed up trying to achieve someone else’s definition of success. Broken up into 12 steps, the book follows a journey through the 12 aspects of creating success on your own terms with homework and challenges at the end of each chapter to implement the work into your life immediately.

                                          By the end of the book, you’ll have a completed strategic plan to step up into the world and go after even some of your biggest dreams knowing that you are enough already.

                                          Get the book here!

                                          The Bottom Line

                                          You only need one good idea to change your life, and there’s so much important wisdom and inspiration in the 20 best books on personal development listed above. You don’t have to read all of them. You just have to start.

                                          Personal development is about taking action to develop yourself personally. So, scan this list, find a book that resonates with you, and then start reading.

                                          You don’t need to measure the magnitude—just the direction. If you take one tiny step toward the life you want, every day for a year, you’ll be 365 times closer to your dreams a year from today. But you just have to start.

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                                          Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

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