Personal improvement is the process where we do something, or change something, in order to make our lives better. It might be learning a new skill, losing weight, getting in better shape, or preparing ourselves for something in the future. Whatever it might be, it all revolves around us making changes in our lives to accomplish a designated goal or purpose.
People have different reasons for doing something new or changing something about themselves. They might have had something happen to them that signalled a need for change. Maybe they had a health scare which made them want to lose weight and exercise. Perhaps they were passed over for a promotion, or even laid off, and they see the need to improve their skill sets. Whatever the reason people have to improve something, one fact remains. To be successful, almost everyone needs some kind of help or guidance.
Very often we want to accomplish something, but just don't have the slightest idea of how to go about it. Maybe we want to learn something new but are unsure whether to read a book, take a class, or do some actual hands on apprenticeship or something. Maybe we want to lose weight but don't know how to do that safely and in a healthy manner. We may know we have to do something, but have no idea what! If that sounds silly, think of the person who has a hard time getting a job or making friends. He or she may know something they are doing is wrong but have no idea what that is.
The key to personal improvement is knowledge. Knowledge of yourself and your strong points and weak points. Very often some of this knowledge comes from others. Maybe your boss told you a co-worker got a promotion instead of you because they had a specific skill set you didn't have. So now you know one thing you need to improve on. Maybe a friend tells you something about yourself that was difficult to hear but makes you aware of a personality or behavioral issue. Well, now you know one area to start on.
But most of the information you get will come from personal experiences and by being brutally honest with yourself. It does no good to tell youself you are perfect when things going on around you indicate otherwise. You will make the most progress by sitting down and being honest with yourself. Admitting personal weakneeses might not be easy but acknowledging them is the first step to fixing them. The second step is deciding the right way to fix them.
It is said that information is knowledge and knowledge is power. Nothing could be more true than that. Improving ourselves takes commitment and it takes having a purpose. In other words, you cannot improve for someone else, YOU have to want to improve. Once you make the commitment it is time to gert started.
If you know what you need to do, the next step is determining what you have to do to achieve your goal. Write down everything that needs to happen. Make a checklist and a timeline and give yourself actual dates to achieve each step. If you need to read a book to get your first skill completed, then get the book and set a hard date to finish the book. then check that off and move on to the next item on the list. Long term success is not about getting things done quick, it's about getting them done RIGHT!
If you feel the need, enlist others in your improvement process. Maybe you need a co-worker of friend to help you along. If the changes are significant, maybe enlisting a professional therapist might be a good idea. There is no shame in asking for or getting help. In fact, the opposite is true. Those people who enlist the help of others and don't try and do it all on their own are far more successful and are far more likely to reamin committed to their goal. So don't feel weak if you need someone elses help. Instead, feel strong and confident that you realized the value of getting help.
Lastly, everyone experiences roadblocks and setbacks. Very few people sail through without trouble. The key is to not get discouraged and lose your motivation because something was harder than you thought. Instead, when these times come up, take a step back and show yourself the progress you made since you started. When you see the results of your efforts, you will get a new excitment and an increased drive to keep going and get even better and stronger.
The key to success is not avoiding failure it's how we react when we experience it.