Personal Growth and Development
"To conquer oneself is the best and noblest victory; to be vanquished by one's own nature
is the worst and most ignoble defeat." ~Plato
Personal growth and development
I believe as a professional life coach, that personal growth and development affects us in three main tiers; self, others, and institutions. On the realms of self, my goal is to improve your awareness and identity, develop your talents and potential, refine tactics to facilitate your employability, enhance your quality of life and contribute towards realization of your dreams and aspirations. Second, Personal growth and development is not limited to self-help but includes formal and informal activities for developing others, in roles such as teacher, guide, counsellor, manager, coach, or mentor. Finally, as personal development takes place in the context of institutions, it refers to the methods, programs, tools, techniques, and assessment systems that support human development at the individual level in organizations.
At the level of the individual, personal development includes the following activities:
- improving self-awareness
- improving self-knowledge
- building or renewing identity
- developing strengths or talents
- improving wealth
- spiritual development
- identifying or improving potential
- building employability or human capital
- enhancing lifestyle or the quality of life
- improving health
- fulfilling aspirations
- initiating a life enterprise or personal autonomy
- defining and executing personal development plans
- improving social abilities
The concept covers a wider field than self-development or self-help: personal development also includes developing other people. This may take place through roles such as those of a teacher or mentor, either through a personal competency (such as the skill of certain managers in developing the potential of employees) or a professional service (such as providing training, assessment or coaching).
Beyond improving oneself and developing others, personal development is a field of practice and research. As a field of practice it includes personal development methods, learning programs, assessment systems, tools and techniques. As a field of research, personal development topics increasingly appear in scientific journals, higher education reviews, management journals and business books.
Any sort of development — whether economic, political, biological, organizational or personal — requires a framework if one wishes to know whether change has actually occurred. Here is where my role of a life coach becomes an asset. In the case of personal development, an individual often functions as the primary judge of improvement, but validation of objective improvement requires assessment using standard criteria. Thus having the right framework is essential in gauging a healthy progression of self fulfillment. Focusing on the Personal Development framework in my work requires establishing goals or benchmarks that define the end-points, strategies or plans that make reaching your goals, attainable and within reach of reality.