Now and then we all get that feeling that we should be doing better. We put this pressure on our selves on purpose because we feel it is time for us to grow. Personal growth is often something that can take the backseat to priorities at work and at home. We are swept up in taking care of our kids, our friends, our cars, that we are distracted from taking care of ourselves. However, it is vital to have a feeling of satisfaction both at home and at the workplace. Often we are so settled into our daily routines that we are unsure where we can improve. We could be exercising more, eating better foods, or managing our finances more economically. We could be reading, writing or helping others. The best version of you is out there! It’s up to you and your self-discipline to make it happen. Below are 8 tips to keep you up on your personal growth.
#1. Improve Your Time Management Skills
If it seems like there are not enough hours in the day, you need to manage your time more effectively. Time management is not something that comes naturally to many people, but it is a skill that can be learned.
Quick Tip: Make a list of the three most important things you need to accomplish each day, then focus on those critical tasks above all else. You can work on other, less important things to help clear your mind and separate each of the tasks, but don’t let anything else change your priorities. Consider delegating less vital but still important tasks to trusted associates as you remain focused on the big picture (instead of trying micromanage everything that happens).
#2. Keep the Things You Need Within Arm’s Reach
Your workspace can help, or hurt, your productivity. Take a look at the workspace you have established and make sure everything you need is within easy reach.
Quick Tip: Spend some time reconsidering your workspace from a functional point of view. From paper clips to invoices, everything you need to run your business and do your job should be within easy access. It might not seem like a big thing, but the efficiency of your workspace can have a profound impact on the operation of your business.
#4. Get to Know Your Customers
In today’s digital age, there’s no excuse for not remaining in close contact with your customers. Understanding their goals, hopes, and needs begins with conversation – so the more of them your having, the more responsive you can be. You will learn a lot about your friends and neighbors, but you will also make valuable contacts you can tap to grow your business and find new markets. Your business community involvement is likely one of the largest untapped resources at your disposal.
Quick Tip: If you operate within the local community, get involved with local sports and charitable endeavors, talk to your neighbors and join professional organizations and booster clubs. If your geography is larger, participate in industry or trade associations, organize an open house (in person or virtual), dial their phone number, or utilize videoconferencing software.
#6. Seek Out a Coach
The most elite performers in sport and industry rely on coaches. No matter how vast your experience, you can always benefit from a experienced thought-partner. The most common benefits cited by those who utilize a professional coach include increased awareness, fresh perspectives on personal challenges, enhanced decision-making skills, greater interpersonal effectiveness, and increased confidence. But the benefits don’t stop there. The goal of coaching is to encourage and develop the best version of yourself.
Quick Tip: There are many considerations to choosing the tight coach but a great place to start is ensuring that your coach has experience performing in a similar setting and a thorough appreciation of your ambitions. A good coach will guide you, keep you moving forward, help you dramatically expand your perspective, and offer you new ways of thinking and being. But it’s up to you to make things happen.
#7. Take Care of Yourself
As a productive member of the working world, you health and the overall health of your organization are deeply intertwined. If you fail to safeguard your own physical and emotional well-being, your organization, and everyone who depends on it, will suffer from that neglect. And the costs are staggering. According to the World Health Organization, the cost of stress to American businesses is as high as $300 billion. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, two-thirds of visits to the doctor’s office are for stress-related conditions. Taking care of yourself is a critical component of taking care of your organization.
Quick Tip: Find time to disengage. Run, walk, play tennis… meditate, practice tai-chi, take a yoga class… eat healthy, get plenty of sleep, and stay active. No one solution will fix everything so no matter how you currently take care of yourself, there’s bound to be room for improvement. The more effectively you care for your body and mind the better your business and life will be.
#8. Engage Your Employees Through Feedback
Operational excellence is seldom a top-down endeavor. Your colleagues and employees have a lot to offer, and you should tap their knowledge (and value their perspective). It’s no coincidence that feedback, like engagement, requires you to get involved. As a personal habit, this is often easier said than done, especially for leaders near the top of the organization. Channels of communication dry up as one moves upward. With each level that information flows through, it gets filtered and strained. Like all things, to preserve the quality, you must get close to the source. This means reducing (perhaps drastically) perceived differences in power, making yourself more accessible, and likely opening informal channels of communication. In other words: engagement.
Of course you don’t have to be the boss to benefit from open engagement. A fundamental component of workplace trust is consistent, two-way communication. A wise man once said, “a desk is no place to see the world.”
Quick Tip: Get some feedback. Make it a habit to ask how the job your doing is affecting those around you.
More and more, we are sunk down into our routines. We find a comfortable nest to stay in that we rarely venture out of. We allow the comfort to take over, and suddenly our personal growth comes to a steaming halt. No longer are we pushing ourselves to be the best. We have settled with a version of ourselves that, while livable, may not be giving us the greatest satisfaction out of life. It is up to each of us individually to break out of the routine to learn more about ourselves though exploration. Personal growth can help out in many aspects of life, from personal relationships to work relationships and beyond. Taking the time to truly care for yourself will bring forth some unbelievable results.
The tips listed above can help you get started, and over time you will no doubt develop additional strategies of your own. Be bold, and be strong. Commit to new things, and follow through. It is only though pushing yourself and struggle that you can become the best you.
Have other suggestions that have helped you to improve
your business life? Share them in the comment below: