It’s lovely that we can take care of our own personal development. However, many people get reluctant to have a closer look at themselves. They are scared about what they might discover. Others think that it’s going to be too hard to change anything, whereas some people want to change, but are worried about stepping out of their comfort zone.
Personal development or even making the decision to invest time and money in ourselves, can therefore be daunting at first. However, some psychologists theorise [read more here] that we go through changes consistently throughout our lives, and if we ignore the challenges that come with the various stages of life, we miss out big time and end up being a lot less happy than we could be.
How to approach the subject of personal development?
There are many ways to work on self-improvement. A good start is to read some books on the topic, do workshops or work with a life coach. Of course, doing a search on the internet would be another option, but often people get frustrated as it is overwhelming and difficult to discern the validity of the information.
When we start thinking about ‘Who do I want to be’ we must be especially careful not to go along with what we think others want us to become or what society suggests as appropriate. No, it’s extremely important to be authentic.
But what does ‘being authentic’ even mean?
It means being aligned with who we truly are. It means, not to listen to others, and live according to their dreams. I think, I mentioned the number one regret of the dying before. It’s the regret, not to having lived their own lives, but having fulfilled other people’s dreams. In addition, they regret having worked too much and laughed too little.
The best way to get clear whether an idea of personal development is authentic, is to journal about it. Journaling is a great technique to get in touch with the unconscious mind. The key is to keep writing for at least 20 minutes. The handwriting is important too, it helps to connect with parts of our mind that is not easily accessed with our conscious thinking mind. The questions to ask are any thoughts that come up around the idea of personal growth. Let’s say, we wanted to become more courageous. You would first come up with some questions to journal about.
Here are some example questions that you can use as a template for your own questions:
- What does being courageous mean to me?
- What does not being courageous mean to me?
- What would happen if I became courageous?
- What would happen if I didn’t become courageous?
- What would my partner/parents/friends etc. think of me if I became courageous?
- What would my partner/parents/friends etc. think of me if I didn’t become courageous?
Here’s how to do the journaling:
- Set 30 minutes aside, where you won’t be disturbed (turn your mobile off)
- Get a journal and a pen ready
- Find a comfortable seated position
- Close your eyes, and take a few deep breaths in and out
- Allow your body to relax
- Open your eyes and start writing without pause for at least 20 minutes answering the questions above
Happy journaling and please let me know how you went with this exercise.
In addition, you can now watch the interview with Yantra-ji from January about WHO AM I and this month’s interview with Jacinta Lacey about WHO DO I WANT TO BE. There also some bonus content: Some thoughts on Pain and Dr Google, scroll down to read more.
 By unconscious mind, I mean every aspect of our mind that is not presently in our conscious awareness. There are many expressions that people use for the same phenomenon, for example subconscious, inner child, body wisdom, higher self, etc.