There should be a cool intro, but I didn’t come up with any – so let’s just jump right into this very biased list of personal development tips.
Reading self-development books will not make you smarter nor it’s going to improve your current situation. While you may gain some knowledge from reading personal development books, it’s not going to take you far in terms of knowledge applicability.
Personal development is not hidden in books. At least, not in the “personal development” books.
Personal development is the process and result of your efforts in solving a problem in the real world using your current knowledge and extracting lessons from the situation to gain experience.
It’s the experience that matters. The only way to gain experience is to try things.
It doesn’t matter how many books you read. The situation will not change. You have to take action.
Find the easiest job you can do. For example, you can work at:
By default, a lot of people come and go there causing huge staff turnover. The employer is ready to teach you quickly just as well as to lose you quickly.
What’s good for you is that these kinds of jobs will not affect your reputation, will get you instant cash, and most importantly, experience.
What kind of skills and experiences you can expect to gain in no time:
Now, this is where you may actually start reading books. However, these books will not be about self-development, they’ll probably be about how you can improve your skills that you’ve just obtained.
When you have some realistic experience it’s much easier to grow from there than trying to comprehend something very detached from your reality, especially, something that’s written in self-development books.
When you don’t have any experience and data to work with, you should earn it. You have to try first and then learn how you can improve your results.
Here are some of the books I highly recommend:
It’s not enough to have any purpose attached to whatever you’re doing. Moreover, if you’re doing something, and you don’t why you’re doing it – you’re an idiot.
Here is a list of the stupidest things people do when they don’t have a purpose:
In fact, these activities do have a purpose. Unfortunately, it’s a very low-quality purpose. Without getting too much into philosophical details, there is certainly room for improvement.
Let’s take the same list and attach a better meaning:
Mastering communication is one of the most important self-development tips.
Probably, the best changes came to me when I started talking to people instead of sitting at home and wishing someone to notice me and talk to me.
I felt like the whole world owes me communication.
However, several years after, I realized that the world doesn’t even know I exist. Why? Because I was sitting in my rented room, and my route was pretty simple:
Home -> University -> Home.
Parties, events, occasional meetings? I ignored them. In return, the world ignored me.
It’s a very simple rule – treat others as you want to be treated. Well, I hated talking to people because I thought they were evil, hateful, spiteful, depraved – but in fact, it was me.
Do not ignore occasional meetings and events. Moreover, if you are like me – don’t try to find “soulmates” because your soul is dark.
Just talk to people about what they like and not about what you hate.
When they ask you “And what do you do? What are your hobbies?” How can you respond when you don’t have any?
Talk about your wishes and plans. Come up with some that would be meaningful to you and share them.
Events, parties, and meetings should become a part of your life if you want to break the circle of lonely nights, emotional numbness, and alike feelings.
A big achievement is a sequence of small achievements – and you know it well. However, have you ever paid attention to smaller things? Improving your micro-interactions with people is indeed a personal development tip.
Instead of focusing on public speaking, thousand-people-audiences, stand-ups, or communication with your friends – try to improve your daily micro-interactions with other people.
Somebody has held a door for you? Say “Thank you. Have a nice day!”
Have you held a door for somebody? Did they thank you? Don’t ignore them – say “You’re welcome!”
In a grocery store.
A cashier is pitching you with their classic sales message about cards, coupons, bags, etc.
Don’t just ignore them – try to respond to all of their sentences even if it’s a negative response.
When you’ve paid for your purchase – say “Thank you. Have a nice day!”
You’ve just had your haircut. Did you like it? Don’t just say “Thank you. Have a nice day!”
Extend your message and appreciate the work of a hair master/stylist. Say that you liked their skills and approach. You’ve enjoyed the process, and you’d love to visit them again.
It feels so nice to be nice. Cultivate a human within you. Make someone else’s day better by showing that you care, appreciate the work that they do, and be grateful for that. Why not, right?
When it comes to you, here is the list of skills you can expect to master:
Moreover, when it comes to other types of communications – your micro-interactions will pay off twice as much.
Another great personal development tip is – document the info you consume.
It’s awesome if you document it in one place – notebook, diary, mobile device, etc. Keeping all the information in one place helps you grow your list of useful pieces of knowledge and makes it easier for you to search for the required notes again.
Personally, I never go back to those notes. However, I often write down things that I find interesting and mind-changing because it helps me memorize them better.
When you listen/watch/read something, it’s easy to forget it in a second because you didn’t take time to practice or “fix” your knowledge somewhere.
When you document it, you activate other sensors and you make your brain process that information.
Moreover, when you share a piece of knowledge with somebody else in a written or oral form you can expect that info to be remembered for a long long time.
Schematically, this is how your process of learning should look:
We’ve just extended this list. However, that seems legit, and this is exactly how it works for me. I might as well write a more detailed article on it later. Would you like me to?
Leave a “yes” in the comments or “no” if you don’t want it.
Also, help me to grow this list of personal development tips by suggesting your observations, routines, and strategies.
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