4 Steps To Start Your Personal Development Journey

Are you willing to start your personal development journey? If you have decided to read this article, then I assume you do like to develop yourself, don’t you (I mean, who doesn’t)?

Our lives are filled with a lot of holes. While we may be good at something, we lack in many other things. A good public speaker might be having a drinking problem, a wealthy businessman might be having a personal life crisis, a beauty model might be feeling unattractive internally.

To fill all these holes, the answer is personal development. It doesn’t matter what problems you are facing. The only thing that matters is how you deal with those problems.

So let’s start your personal development journey with just 4 steps, shall we?

Steps we’ll be discussing:

  1. Find Your WHY
  2. Set Your Goals
  3. Commit To It
  4. Self Reflect On Your Development Journey
start your personal development journey
Start your personal development journey

1. Find Your WHY To Start Your Personal Development Journey

Before anything else, it’s essential for you to learn about your purpose. You should know what motivates you to do something. 

Why do you do what you do? Is it the money? Or satisfaction you get from doing it? Do you love the process? Once you are able to answer this question, you will be able to know yourself.

In one of the most viewed TED Talks ever, Simon Sinek discussed the question “Why?”. 

When you hear about successful people, you must have heard that they had to struggle a lot, haven’t you? But they never quit, why? It’s because their desire to succeed is more than their fear to fail. They are driven by a purpose. They feel that they have to achieve it, no matter what. 

Finding your purpose could take a long time, as it did for me. In fact, it took me more than a week to finally figure out what I really wanted with my life. 

My WHY/ Purpose

After a lot of thinking, I was finally able to realize that I wanted to do something good for the children. The children who were deprived of basic needs because of their unfortunate circumstances. I realized that even if I could help 10 children have a better future, then I would call my life a successful one. 

Having this purpose in mind, I was able to use it when I hit my “mental blocks”. For me, a mental block is a time when I don’t feel like doing anything, you know, just want to sleep or watch movies for the entire day.

At that moment, my inner-self reminds me, “Why am I just lying around? Think about the children. You won’t be able to help any of them if you do nothing!”

Hearing such a deep voice makes me believe that I should really not waste my time if I want to make a difference in this world.  

So I hope that you too will be able to discover yourself. Don’t worry if it takes time. Once you figure out your purpose, you will realize it was worth it.

“There are two ways to build a career or business. We can go through life hunting and pecking, looking for opportunities or customers, hoping that something connects. Or we can go through life with intention, knowing what our piece looks like, knowing our WHY, and going straight to the places we fit.” 

Simon Sinek

2. Set Your Goals 

While your purpose helps you with your why, your goals help you with your how. After discovering your why, you should now proceed towards setting your goals. 

But if you haven’t yet found your why, then it won’t help much with your goals. As you don’t know what motivates you or what you want out of your life, you would be setting the wrong goals. Your why gives you a reason to fulfill your goals.

While setting down your goals, you should break them into yearly, monthly, weekly, and daily. Breaking them down into time-specific blocks will make it easier for you to track and reflect them later on. 

I like to particularly use the SMART goal setting technique. As a demonstration, I would like to provide one of my actual goals for 2020, so you can relate to it.

GOAL: Improve Reading

  • Specific – Read 18 books 
  • Measurable – Compare with the total books read in 2019.
  • Achievable – Yes, if I can find all the books.
  • Realistic – Reading 30 minutes a day will make it possible.
  • Timely – 2020 

So far, I have completed 11 books, and am expecting to surpass my goal quicker than I thought.

Try setting your goals in this format, and you will see them differently.

Pro Tip: 

If you believe that you won’t have much time to complete your goals, then start using a time block. The most effective people have been using this technique for a long time. 

As per RescueTime, time blocking is the practice of planning out your day in advance and dedicating specific time “blocks” for certain tasks. While a standard to-do list tells you what you need to do, time blocking tells you when you’re going to do it. 

“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.”

Bill Copeland

3. Commit To It 

This one is obvious, isn’t it? After all, what’s the point of setting goals if we are unable to commit to it. Sadly, a lot of us (including me) tend to divert to other areas of our lives. 

I have been using a time block for some time now. It has helped me a lot to stick to only those tasks that are important to me. I can do my remainder work later on.

Alternative to Time Block 

If you don’t like the idea of time block, then consider alternatives. The best one would be to establish good habits. Habits either create or destroy us. Think about one of your bad habits that is degrading your life. 

Why aren’t you able to quit that habit? 

It’s because you are so “committed” to it that you are unable to uncommit to it. You might have tried to remove it several times. Unfortunately, it keeps coming back, doesn’t it? 

Personal Story

I used to suffer from insomnia early on. Staying up until 4 in the morning was the norm for me. I barely used to get any sleep. I thought my life was doomed to fade away.

One good thing was that even back then, I had the habit of reading books. As I was so desperate to change my sleeping habits, I picked up the book ‘Atomic Habits’

I cannot thank enough to James Clear for writing such a masterpiece. With simple but effective steps, I was able to commit myself to break my bad sleeping habits. 

Since then, my sleeping habits have improved dramatically. I even cured my insomnia in the process.

“Motivation is what gets you started. Commitment is what keeps you going.”

Jim Rohn

4. Self Reflect On Your Development Journey

Without reflecting, how can we know how much progress we are making? Simply, we can’t.

It’s as important to review your goals as it was setting them in the first place. Whatever goals you have written for yourself, see how far you have accomplished. 

If you have completed them, then that’s wonderful. This will lead you towards your long term goals. If you haven’t, learn about why you failed to do so. Commit yourself to avoid failing them from next time. 

Don’t fear to self reflect at any given time. You must know about yourself, about your mistakes. You’ve to find a way to overcome them from next time. 

How to Self Reflect?

1. Daily Reflection 

Before going to sleep, tally your day’s tasks with your actual tasks done. You may give a score to yourself based on how you feel went with your day. If you failed to complete any of your tasks, then be sure to include it in the following day’s tasks.

2. Collaboration With the Nearest One

It’s okay if you feel it’s difficult to control yourself. Even I cannot do it at times. So in that case, have your closed person evaluate you. It could be your friend or a family member. Just make sure you trust that person. Discuss the challenges you are facing in your personal development. Take any criticism positively as it provides you an opportunity to improve upon. 

Now that you know the 4 steps to start your personal development journey, it’s time for you to take that first step. Forgive yourself for whatever bad you have done to yourself. Promise that from this day, you will change. You will change for the good!

”What we perceive about ourselves is greatly a reflection of how we will end up living our lives.”

Stephen Richards

I have written a similar article about my experience with social media in this coronavirus lockdown. Check it out – My Personal Experience With Social Media In This Coronavirus Lockdown

If you learned something and enjoyed reading this article, then please consider sharing this with your wonderful friends as well. Thank you so much!

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This Post Has 25 Comments

  1. Salma

    Such a wonderful topic and wonderful tips to follow to really develop yourself, so much to get from this blog and the way in presenting it with examples is just great, I will try those tips in my life definitely, great one, keep going ☺️😍

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Thank you so much Salma! 🙂 I am very glad you are finding this post helpful. You are not far away to get benefits following the tips mentioned here. Be ready to explore more about you!

      1. Anonymous

        I absolutely loved the article !Really I am intrigued by the level of absolute understanding you gave me through your 4 essential steps on Personal Development .I will definitely work upon it .Keep up the good work !

        1. Kiran Kandel

          Thank you so much for loving the article and stopping by. I believe the 4 steps I have provided here would also be helpful for you. I am glad you would be working on it. Have a good journey of development ahead! 🙂

  2. Sangeeta Meena (Mysha)

    Very well said. Keep inspiring! 🙂

  3. Anonymous

    Very well said. Keep inspiring! 🙂
    Best wishes,
    Sangeeta Meena(Mysha)
    Code Blog

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Thank you so much Mysha!
      I will keep my work inspiring. 🙂

      Kiran Kandel

  4. Anonymous

    I really enjoyed your post. I will definitely keep this in mind as my move forward.

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Thanks a lot for keeping these into consideration! 🙂
      I hope you will grab the benefits of applying these soon.

  5. Anonymous

    Hi there, I think this was a great post! I especially like the idea of time blocking. I’ve found that assigning certain times for certain tasks really helps my productivity. I also think it’s important that you brought up relying on someone else to hold you accountable when you’re facing challenges. This is a great idea, and it’s something I’m going to start doing. Thanks so much for providing these self-development tips!

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I am glad you would found the idea of time blocking helpful. I promise, it will help to keep you in track and utilize time accordingly.
      Also, relying on someone else helps when you are not open to others thoughts. It would help to understand what others feel like and establish good relations as well.
      I hope you would be able to grasp the benefit soon! 🙂

  6. Marco Cuadra

    Hi! I wrote about toxic positivity and now I’m bouncing onto your blog. I like what you are doing for the world, helping people to explore themselves. I have been doing personal development for a year now, and one caveat I have discovered two days ago (which you might want to be vigilant of) is focusing too much on what-we-could-be, instead on what-we-currently-are. It’s very important to stay in the present and learn it as early as possible so we don’t drown into frustrations of projecting ourselves in the future. That’s step 4 for me!

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Hello Marco!
      I am glad to know that you liked our work to spread ideas for the world.
      I cannot agree with you anymore. You are so true about living in the present moment. It is very essential for us to remain in the present and be prepared for the hazy days without being frustrated.
      Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on step 4. 🙂

  7. Charles Omofuma Ituah

    Insightful article. Very well thought of

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Thank you Charles for finding this article helpful. It means you have enjoyed going through the post. 🙂

  8. Kavya

    Such a beautifully written article! I love the way how you’ve demonstrated every aspect of personal development with your own story. It just makes it more reliable and authentic. And yes, self-reflection is such an important part of Personal development. Thanks for putting it down in a much simplistic way.

    1. Kiran Kandel

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Kavya! 🙂
      It means a lot to me. I am even inspired by your comment to keep my posts come better. Once again thank you so much. 🙂

      1. Dee Banks

        Reading this article made my day! I’ve read a lot of articles on goal setting but somehow they didn’t land with me, yours did. Your personal story, quotes, and link to the Ted Talk were inspiring. I’ve struggled lately with purpose, going through the motions of activities for the sake of activities, without clear direction & it’s been frustrating. Thanks to you, this morning after reading your article, quotes & listening to a few of the talks, I’ve dusted off my journal and wrote one word on the page – WHY? THANK-YOU for this.😊😊😊

        1. Kiran Kandel

          I am very happy to find out you implemented what I suggested from the post. Though, you had gone through difficulties, I hope you were able to deal with them and learn from them. Having a clear direction and purpose will make you a person with invincible power. Also, listening to Ted Talk can help you to understand better.
          Thank you so much friend for your kind words. That WHY will inspire you to make your life fruitful!

  9. Saania

    Nice blog

  10. Anonymous

    This is inspiring and very well-written! I can say that I hope to follow these steps in the future.

  11. Anonymous

    “It’s because their desire to succeed is more than their fear to fail.” This phrase resonates with me as I continue taking steps forward. Trying new things, and releasing my creativity into the world for others to see is scary. But I really want to encourage others to take control of the things in their life they are able to and move towards success. I feel that my writing; stories, poetry, and music; have a message to give. They often help me realise I’ve got more learning to do myself. And I hope others keep learning too!

    Thank you. 🙂

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