Personal Development Clearly Explained

In this post we'll explore what personal development really is, what the benefits are and how to best practice it.

As you already know, axel g covers personal development, meditation and spirituality. In a moment, I'll elaborate on how they are connected.

Personal development is often called self-help, self-improvement, self-growth and personal growth. It is true to say that personal development is an extremely broad field. It includes anything from yoga, meditation, health, nutrition, fitness, productivity, motivation, success to study techniques.

Even emotional healing, self-esteem, new age, Buddhism and shamanism belong in the list.

In short, personal development, meditation and spirituality are closely related and overlap each other. Personally, I view myself as a spiritual seeker. That is to say, my main interest is to experience truth and reality, also referred to as ultimate truth and ultimate reality. That includes to experience and observe the workings of the body-mind complex and to connect with spiritual beings.

There are literally thousands of meditation techniques. Meditation is simply a means to focus the mind, or phrased differently, it's a way to direct your attention. A steadfast mind is a most useful and powerful tool. It's not surprising that both personal development and spirituality make use of meditation to achieve their objectives.

Since personal development is so broad, there is something for everyone. Find out what suits you, and feel free to move on to new techniques or methods, whenever you feel the need to.

The Dynamics Of Personal Development

Personal development is all about positive change. If you are depressed, you can heal the mental and emotional pain. If you are overweight, you can lose weight. If you are interested in leading a healthy lifestyle, you can take on healthy habits. If you have an anger issue, you can work on yourself to become less emotionally reactive, and so on.

Perhaps you strive to become a better parent, partner or friend. These are all wholesome ambitions, full of good intentions.

It takes sincere effort to call forth positive change, which is mainly because of your old habits. Yet, it is totally effortless to slip into old habits. Laziness and a lack of discipline are the most challenging obstacles along the path.

It's natural to find motivation in a group. Sharing experiences with others that are in a similar situation, is most meaningful and uplifting. It may be a group where you live or online. Other sources of support and inspiration include videos, blogs and books. Join a group or look for inspiration elsewhere, discover what works for you.

It must be said, not all personal development books, workshops and teachers have anything of substance to offer. Unfortunately, some personal development systems are entirely or in part, based on assumptions and beliefs. The bottomline is to apply common sense.

It's important to know that we have a tendency to build up mental and emotional resistance to people and activities that we don't like. That means you won't be motivated to practice or work on yourself. Many a time we spend hours, or even days, dreading what lies ahead of us. This unskillful approach only results in unpleasant feelings and thoughts.

You may already have experienced it, once you start your daily exercise routine, for example, the unpleasant mental state subsides. By pushing yourself across the threshold, the practice almost immediately starts to flow. Use this understanding to your advantage.

The way to cultivate discipline, endurance and persistence, is by starting to practice at the set time. Don't procrastinate, don't resist it. Rather, let go of your negative feelings and thoughts, stop identifying with them.

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Set realistic goals. For instance, if your goal is to lose 15 kilos (33 pounds), break the long journey into several milestones. This will boost your motivation. For one, your goal will be within reach, and every time you tick a subgoal it will boost your motivation and self-confidence.

How fundamental it is to believe in oneself.

What is more, once you have lost all the weight, maintain it! In other words, take on a long-term perspective. That translates into healthy eating habits and regular exercise.

Even though it takes time and effort to reach your final goal, progress is steady as long as you apply yourself. For instance, I meditate and do physical exercise every morning. All up, it takes between 2-4 hours. The fruits of my daily practice is easily noticeable. My physical stamina and muscle tones improve slowly but steadily. Mind you, I mostly do stretching and only some strength exercises, which makes the body really supple.

When it comes to my meditation practice, which accounts for over 90% of the time and effort invested, the progress is as solid as a heavy cargo train. Even on bad days, I'm aware of the progress. That is truly motivating and makes the practice most enjoyable.

I would like to point out, that it took me many years of meditation practice to become aware of the minute changes and processes that are the fruits of progress. The truth is that every moment of meditation practice results in progress, regardless of what level you are at.

There is no need though, to be aware of every bit of progress you make. Most progress is so subtle that it passes under the radar. Once you have made significant progress, which often is an accumulation over time, you are bound to become aware of it.

Your meditation teacher can usually tell when you have made progress. Either by the look on your face, or based on what you report.

In conclusion, take on a long-term perspective. Successful personal development rests on a foundation of regular practice, sound habits, discipline, stamina and above all, effort.

I used to have little discipline and habitually gave in to unpleasant emotions, which made me stall and lose motivation altogether. Moreover, I was lazy and lacked endurance. If I can change, so can you.

Best of luck!

Related:   Quality Of Life   Overcoming Laziness   Building Self-Confidence

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