Tips To Prioritize Personal Growth at Any Year In Your Life
2021 (and beyond) is promising to be just as challenging and unpredictable as 2020 has been..
However, while previous years have certainly caught most of us unaware, this year, we’re at least able to guess what might be in store. In 2020, when those first lockdowns started rolling out, everyone was all about personal growth. If we’re staying at home, we might as well make good use of our time, was the main motto. Today, we are not quite in lockdown anymore, but life is certainly not back to normal yet. The question that naturally arises is: how can we prioritize that same personal growth in this shifting climate? Furthermore, how can we live some semblance of our old lives at the same time? Let’s find out.
Start with Your Why
As Simon Sinek has already pointed out, knowing why you are doing something will help you do it immensely. Motivation is a fickle creature, and sometimes it’s very easy not to do something. We don’t feel like it, we’re a bit tired, there’s something good on TV. But when you have a compelling and meaningful (to you, personally) reason to do something, it’s easier to get going. Identify your goals and the why behind your personal growth, and they will help you stay on track when you feel like giving up. Bear in mind that you truly need to be doing it for yourself and not because you think you should be doing it. Otherwise, it won’t work.
Make Time for It
Time is the one finite resource we all have, and we all get the exact same amount of it each day. Yet some people seem to get so much more done, while others never seem to get a move on at all. While it is certainly not the only difference between those who achieve their growth goals and those who don’t, time management plays a huge role in both what is perceived as success and what isn’t. Start by scheduling in chunks of time for personal growth in your calendar. This may be an hour to read a book on Saturday morning. It may be an hour every other evening for a course you want to take. Whatever you need to be doing needs to find its proper time in your schedule, as that will make it less likely you’ll just arbitrarily choose not to do it.
Weed out Distractions
If you know what you want to achieve but have trouble actually getting it done, it’s possible that you’re not efficient enough at removing distractions from your life. But that’s OK; most of us face the same problem anyways. If you’re trying to learn an instrument but find yourself going down YouTube rabbit holes when you’re supposed to practice, it might be time to take some decisive action. In addition to blocking out time for your personal growth projects, make sure that the time you have is fully optimized for deep focus. For some people, that will mean leaving their phone in another room. For others, it’ll consist of using website-blocking software. And, some will have to set clear boundaries with their housemates so that they’re not constantly being interrupted.
Set up an Accountability System
How often do you find yourself having an amazing idea, then allowing it to simmer out without taking any action? Whether you think it’d be great to learn a new skill, pick up a new habit, or do something good for your mental health, setting up an accountability system can go a long way in helping you prioritize and achieve personal growth in 2021.
If you have a friend who’s interested in the same topics as you, they might make the perfect study buddy. Or, if your project is more suited for alone-time, think about ways you can keep it a consistent part of your to-do list. Posting about your progress on social media, starting a hobby journal, or just crossing things off your daily task list will all be great motivators. And, they’ll give you a kick of dopamine as well!
Contrary to popular belief, personal growth is not just about the hustle. It has, in fact, much more to do with rest than with work. A well-rested individual will always outshine someone who’s sleep-deprived and stressed, provided they have the same abilities, experiences, and knowledge. Next time you want to pull that all-nighter to get something done, try doing the exact opposite, and going to bed earlier. Of course, getting to bed on time is not enough. With so many things keeping us awake at night, you need to develop habits that will ensure you get the absolute best rest you can.
So, no caffeine late in the evening, saying goodbye to all of your screens an hour before bed, and a soothing routine that helps your mind relax is what you need to start prioritizing. And, if you notice that you’re still having trouble falling asleep (or feel like your nightly 8 hours isn’t enough), your best bet is to see a specialist. They’ll be able to help you get proper rest at night, then slay at whatever you plan on doing during the day.
When trying to establish a personal growth routine, it’s crucial that you don’t do too much too quickly. After all, marathons are won by knowing when to sprint and when to conserve energy. And, your personal growth journey definitely qualifies as a marathon. So, knowing that you’re trying to accomplish something that has long-term meaning, give yourself enough space to take regular breaks. That can mean having a rest day from your new exercise regime. Or a “cheat day” on your healthy diet. Or leaving your study materials at home when going on holiday and allowing yourself to focus on relaxing instead. Pacing yourself can even mean setting a hard-stop rule in terms of your work schedule. For example, if you’re trying to develop a new business and want to ensure you prevent yourself from experiencing burnout, you don’t want to allow yourself to work 24/7. In the end, that’s not a pace you can keep up with. And at one point or another, you’ll have to stop anyway.
Understand Your Priorities
If you are a highly ambitious and driven individual, you may find yourself facing that all too common dilemma: what to focus on first. If you want to achieve several things, chances are you won’t have the time and the headspace to focus on all of them at the same time. Or, you may not be able to achieve all of them in your lifetime at all. This will sadly mean you have to give something up. As difficult as this decision may be, prioritize your list of goals and targets and allocate time for the ones highest up on your list. There may be room for more than one goal, but there likely won’t be room for five. You can also choose to focus on one goal at a time, ensuring it gets your undivided attention and most of your energy. That way, you won’t have your thoughts scattering across different activities, and you may be able to complete a milestone you have set for yourself faster.
Don’t Beat Yourself Up
When trying to prioritize personal growth, one of the worst things you can do for your progress is to allow yourself to feel guilty over anything you haven’t accomplished. Sure, waking up at 5 a.m. every day sounds great. But sleeping through your alarm won’t be the end of the journey. Beating yourself up about it, however, might just create enough anxiety around the task that you give up on your project altogether. If you’re one of those people who struggle to accept their limits (or failures), try altering your approach when things don’t go according to plan.
For example, try thinking about yourself in the same terms you would think about a friend. If someone you love had a mishap, you wouldn’t make them feel guilty and worthless, would you? No, you’d encourage them to try again. Or, if your original goal was too challenging, try lowering the bar just a bit. If working on your book project for 2 hours ended up being too exhausting, aim for 60 minutes for your next session. After all, big things take small steps, so don’t rush. The more pressure you put on yourself, the higher the chances that you’ll get tired and give up.
Personal growth is a journey, not a destination. Even when you set clear goals and milestones for yourself, you need to understand that there’s no end in sight. Once you get to where you wanted to be five years ago, you need to repeat that process of goal setting and start all over again. Growth is not finite. That feeling of making it may be intoxicating, but it is also fleeting. You’ll always want to keep striving towards an even better version of yourself for as long as you have time. If you enjoyed this Mod, you might like to read more about these 5 Tips to Look and Feel Confident at the Gym! Please share this Mod using the social links below.