Paying attention to the six important aspects of personal development will have a positive impact on your success and happiness. When you work on one aspect, all the others will positively improve too. However, it is always best to balance and blend.
Holistic growth happens when we pay attention to all aspects of personal development. Without balance, we stunt our growth. A father cannot, for example, spend all his time earning money, even if it is for the sake of his family. An unbalanced, segmented life is a life that is filled with regret.
It does not mean that giving attention to every aspect of your life will make everything perfect. You will still face obstacles, but you can handle each obstacle that will come your way.
I will discuss the six aspects of personal development and provide examples. Your mission today, if personal development is important to you, is to assess in the next few days the aspects of your life, and explore ways to grow in all directions.
This is part of a series on upgrading skills in personal development.
Aspects of Personal Development
The aspects of personal development refer to areas in your life that when developed, may create positive change. The six aspects of personal development are physical, financial, relational, emotional, spiritual, and intellectual. Each one builds the others.
You can grow yourself in all aspects of personal development. It is worth your investment of time, money, and effort.
The physical aspect of personal development includes nutrition, sleep, exercise, and movement. The aim is physical wellness.
Physical wellness consists of physical health, the need for physical activity, healthy foods, sleep, and the ability to handle stress and prevent sickness and diseases. A sound mind is a product of physical wellness. You may create healthy habits to ensure physical wellness.
We have different physical goals.
Some people spend hours in a gym each day, while others spend the same number of hours on a couch watching Netflix.
Every morning, some wake up very early for a morning run while some stay in bed until noontime.
Some like to dance. Others do yoga.
Some people want to be thinner. Others want to build Mr. Universe’s muscles.
People seek ways to feel good. Feeling good, of course, is subjective.
In my book, improvement in the physical area has everything to do with health and wellness. The intention is to avoid disease and prolong life and enjoy it.
Create your daily rules to help you stay physically healthy. When I say rules, I mean the few vital behaviors that you can practice. You may make these behaviors an important part of your plan, or you can develop them into daily habits.
Allow me to give you some examples.
Get up and move.
During the pandemic, I found myself spending much time watching Netflix. To us, everyone seemed to be waiting for the problem to disappear. We waited for days, and days turn into weeks, weeks into months, and months into years.
Everyone was afraid, and very few people moved around. The fear of getting Covid resulted in an inactive lifestyle.
When we don’t exercise, we burn a few calories and this makes main gain weight. Without exercise, we lose muscle strength and endurance, and our bones get weaker. Our immune system may not work as well. In effect, the government’s solution to decreasing the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in an increase in new diseases, some more fatal than Covid. But it seemed no one was monitoring.
We are now allowed to go out. So, get up and move. Bathe yourself in the warm sunshine. Walk, jog, run. We need to exercise to keep ourselves strong and healthy. Do it after you wake up (whatever time you wake up). Do it before you sleep. Exercise while watching TV or listening to a podcast. Get up and move.
Get enough sleep.
I don’t sleep well. Too many things worry me. Some of these things are beyond my control. You don’t need to sleep on your problems, but you need to sleep to stay healthy, clear your mind, and focus.
You are more like to solve your problems when you think clearly and are not overwhelmed by too many things.
Since I often wake up before 4 in the morning, a habit I did not intend to make, I decided to go to bed early. Even during the pandemic, I stayed awake until the wee hours of the morning. Yet, I know that lack of sleep made me unproductive.
Give yourself enough time to sleep. It may not help you live longer (for only God knows how long you’ll live), but it will make you live better. You need a healthy body to have a healthy mind.
Eat the right food.
You decide what food to take in your body. It is a choice you need to make for yourself. You need meat. You need fruits and vegetables. You need to water every day. You need a daily dose of minerals. Eating is a conscious effort.
Food prices increased over the years. You can blame inept government officials. It is their fault. But you need to spend a lot of money on healthy food. If you have empty space in your backyard, you can grow fruits, herbs, and vegetables. Most plants don’t demand much time from you. But they’ll produce enough to keep you healthy.
Eating fast food is more expensive. Cook your own meal. You have enough time to do that. Trust me.
Accountability Prompt: What can I do now to keep myself physically healthy?
The financial aspect of personal development includes income, spending, savings, investments, and protection. Personal development is often hindered by a lack of financial intelligence and an inability to support a family.
Financial wellness is a state of well-being in which you effectively manage your economic life. This means you have enough income and can do the things you enjoy, including pursuing your vocation. You have money for life essentials, pay your bills and debts, and extra money for emergencies.
Many people talk about financial freedom because they feel they have to sell their hours to continue living. Others dream of big houses, beautiful cars, and glory though drowning in debt.
Financial wellness is seldom mentioned in personal development. Probably because some people think that money has nothing to do with it.
On the contrary, many of our goals have something to do with the ability to buy our happiness and peace of mind.
Often, people say that they cannot take care of their health and wellness because they don’t have the financial capability to maintain it.
We all want to grow our ability to monetize our assets. We don’t just want to grow healthy, we also want to be wealthy. Wealth and wellness go together.
We must develop the mindset and abilities to become healthy, wealthy, and happy.
You can also create rules for your financial well-being. You have the ability to increase your income, reduce your expenses, live according to your means, or define the lifestyle you want. You can find help from experts.
Allow me to give you my rules for financial well-being. This is not financial advice, just a personal development example to help you decide on your own.
I don’t buy what I don’t need.
It is easy to fall prey to monthly sales campaigns that give discounts on things that we don’t really need. Getting things at a discount, some people believe, is a clever thing to do.
Buying ten of something for a fifty percent discount isn’t amazing when you only need one. Unless you will sell nine of those things, it is not a wise decision to buy more of what you don’t need.
I find other streams of income.
We can earn more if we want more in life. The good news is we can work less while earning more. We only need to find a way.
Most of us have a steady source of income: our salary. But often, in a family, there is only one source. Even if both the husband and wife are employed, their salaries are not always enough to get the life they want for themselves and their kids.
The good news is that we are allowed to have many streams of income, and these create more stability. Even if we lose our jobs one day, we won’t be afraid because we can always make money.
I create money as a keynote speaker, corporate trainer, and consultant. If work right and provide my clients with the best service possible, I get to earn more. But these services require my presence.
What if I can create another stream of income? I can create an online course, record a webinar, and sell info products. I can enter into a joint venture with venues and other trainers. I have limitless opportunities to earn income even though I only have 24 hours a day. This reality is true for all of us when we break through our financial walls.
I should have done this regularly. Make it part of my discipline. But I stopped doing it for the last four years. And doing so did not do me any good.
It is not enough to increase our income and to live within our means. We also need to track our expenses. It shows that we are prudent managers of our resources.
As I am writing this need, I decided to track my expenses again.
Accountability Prompt. What can I do now to increase my streams of income?
3. Social or Relational
The social or relational aspect of personal development refers to our ability to interact with society in general and to develop authentic relationships with other people. There are people who find it difficult to relate with others, and this prevents them from enjoying the fullness of life. Therefore, our objective is relational well-being.
Relational well-being refers to the quality of our relationship and how we interact with others. It refers to your genuine willingness to build supportive and trusting relationships in the community where you belong. You can improve your relational well-being by increasing your awareness, mindfulness, and interpersonal skills.
Becoming connected with others is a legitimate personal goal. To love and be loved by someone is in our DNA. To belong to a happy family or to form one is a dream that most of us seek.
Above, I said that one goal of personality development is to be able to sell ourselves to others (personal branding). On the other hand, personal development is our desire to become an important part of others’ lives.
Our relational goals are often more significant than our social goals.
Live in Harmony with Others
At the very least, our social goal is to live in harmony with the people in our community. My village is my community. Here I see people, and I talk to some of them. I get to interact with some, even during the pandemic, every time I walk my dog.
Some people have online communities. There are communities for online gamers, content writers, book lovers, and so on.
Many people tend to put people in different boxes: politics, religion, color, and education. These destroy relationships.
We want to belong.
Some seek higher status in social groups. They find happiness in being looked up to in a community. They invest time and other resources to get the status they desire.
In creating your development plan, you may include your networking strategy. You will identify the kind of people you want to be associated with.
Meet more people.
Travels allow me to meet more people. Meeting more people frees me from stereotypes because I learned what people see from their vantage points.
Meeting more people provide us with opportunities to make new friendships too.
Seek to understand.
Seek ye first to understand to be understood. Being in other person’s shoes and having a deeper sense of empathy help us build relationships with people.
This is easier than most people imagine.
They keep to building a healthy social or relational life to recognize that others, even strangers, are like them too.
Much of our problems with performance and productivity can be traced to the lack of emotional intelligence. The emotional aspect of personal development includes the ability to understand and manage our feelings, especially in high-pressure situations.
This requires us to be in touch with our emotions. What we seek is emotional health.
Emotional health refers to how well you manage your thoughts and feelings when meeting challenges in your life. A person with good emotional health is aware, resilient, and feels good about herself. Good emotional health does not mean that you are always happy. It means that you can manage the ups and downs of life.
We have to be conscious about developing our emotional health. Notice that many of the people we are looked up to disintegrate themselves because of emotional challenges.
Emotional well-being makes you resilient to stress. Hans Selye, the father of stress management, said that you could not get rid of stress; you can only enjoy it. When you have emotional well-being, you can be calm even in the eye of a storm.
Emotional well-being also allows you to build better relationships. So, it is very much related to social well-being.
It has been said that many families get broken because of debts. I think it has less to do with money and more with the inability to handle emotions.
People with good emotional health enjoy high self-regard and self-esteem. They are more enthusiastic about life. So, check on your emotions if you feel you are missing about life. Make a personal development plan that addresses it.
The spiritual aspect of personal development concerns with our search for connectedness, meaning, purpose, contribution, and being fully alive. It is more than being religious or practicing daily meditations. We seek spiritual wellness.
Spiritual wellness refers to living a meaningful and purpose-driven life. It may include the belief in a higher being. One does have to be religious to be spiritual well. Spiritual wellness makes you recognize the difference between the eternal and the temporal. It keeps you focused on things that matter to you.
Some people join religions to ensure that they get to a better place after they die. And some even go to the extent of thinking that they’ll be the only people who will be saved. These are their beliefs, which though I disagree with them, I respect.
I am not sure if atheists are not spiritual. They don’t believe in spiritualism. Likely, they are not pursuing the belief in the “Supreme Being.” But a lot of them spend much time explaining their beliefs.
Maybe, it has something to do with their intellectual goals.
Even if people do not have spiritual and religious goals, they seek to become good people. Becoming a good person is a goal worth our time.
The intellectual aspects of personal development includes that ability to make decisions, solve problems, plan for action, create, and innovate using available information. It involves thinking skills, attitudes, and mindsets. We seek intellectual wellness.
Intellectual wellness means spending time on intellectual and creative activities to expand your knowledge and create new possibilities. It means that you are open to new ideas and willing to collaborate with others. Intellectual wellness comes from your thirst for learning.
Most of us who went to school understand that the pursuit of education is intellectual growth. Some of us seek knowledge, for knowledge is power. Others seek knowledge for what it brings.
Many of us went to college not because of knowledge but because graduating from college would make us look more knowledgeable. We want a good job.
Of course, we have heard of college dropouts who eventually became billionaires.
Intellectual wellness is in my personal development plan because it helped me grow in other areas. It is a multiplier and amplifier.
So, I read books and articles each day. I listen to podcasts, and I write a lot. I experiment and challenge my thinking.
Importance of Personal Development
Personal development is important because it allows us to enjoy the fullness of our human experience. When conscious about personal development, we live meaningful and purpose-driven lives. Without it, we find ourselves struggling in our lives. Each tomorrow is a boring repeat of yesterday — days passed without notice.
Personal development is like the oxygen we breathe. It keeps us fully alive. We must consciously improve in all aspects of personal development.
Personal development goes beyond learning new skills to help us grow as professionals. It is more than helping us lead others. It is becoming our damnedest best.
When I pursue it, I become more self-aware. I set myself up for happiness. And I observe its benefits on others too.
Why is personal development important? Here are practical answers.
- It increases your sense of purpose.
- It helps you manage stress.
- It helps you re-energize yourself.
- It helps you develop a more positive outlook.
- It helps you to become healthy.
- It helps you become wealthy.
- It helps you grow as a leader.
- It helps you improve your mental power.
- It helps you leverage your strengths.
- It opens new opportunities for you.
You can enjoy all of these benefits when you pay attention to all aspects of personal development.
Those who seek personal development will find it. They can design for themselves the life they desire. Though a “balanced” life is an illusion for most of us, we certainly can devote time to aspects that matter most to us.
As you continue your journey, I offer you the following personal growth articles.