Much like a good old diet that you have failed at time after time, you finally have a breakthrough.
You cannot wait to share the pearl of wisdom you gained from your experience.
Contribute in your small ways and help someone who may be struggling with their life journey so that she too can enjoy the benefits you have experienced (and are experiencing every day).
It’s just too good to keep it all to yourself.
That’s what I’m doing through this post today by sharing why personal development didn’t work for me before.
Now that I’ve had a breakthrough, I’d like to share with you what I’ve done wrong all this time.
Why you too may find your self-development journey deeply frustrating despite the countless blog posts or books you’ve read (but I suspect you already know the answer).
As the title alluded to, this wasn’t my first rodeo in personal growth endeavour.
In fact, I read hundreds of self-help and motivational books.
To my dismay, it never amounted to anything.
I always went back to the old me.
The whole repeated cycle over the years was disheartening and frustrating.
Looking back, here are 2 reasons why personal development didn’t work for me:
Passive Reading with No Action
When I thought I was on the road to improving myself, what I was really doing was reading passively, consuming tons of information without applying a single thing to my life.
What’s the point of reading unless we apply what we learn, right?
This is the most crucial part of the self-improvement journey.
Another thing is that I really regret not making any notes about the amazing books I read.
No matter how inspiring or educational they are, after some time, you just forget.
You know the saying:
People don’t remember what you say, but they remember how you made them feel.
Something along those lines…
This is true for books too.
I barely remember the contents of the books I read, but I remember how some books made me feel at the time of reading.
For example, I remember feeling:
Duh, this is why I’m not doing well with my business.
I banged my head against a wall repeatedly while reading The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber.
Everything the author was saying spoke to me.
The book made me feel stupid about how I was running my small business. It’s a must-read for a small business owner.
Talking about a book…
Books to Read Again
A few more books I want to read again:
- Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
- The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
- The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
- Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
- How to Own the World by Andrew Craig (better suited for UK readers)
Most books are long forgotten, with the exception of a few.
That’s why I started writing a book review so I won’t forget what it’s about and what I learned and liked about it.
Some Books I Read and are Frequently Recommended by Others
but not on my “read again any time soon” list.
- Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
- The Millionaire Next Door by
- Who Moved My Cheese by
- How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
- The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss
If you’re an avid reader, especially of self-help books, make a note of what particularly inspires you.
Trust me: You can’t rely on your memory alone.
You’ll wish you had organised them in a way you could go back, re-read, and be inspired all over again.
Each time you read, you’ll find new inspiration and perspectives you missed the first time.
That’s the beauty of reading a wonderful book.
If you want to check out my book review, here are a few.
- What to Say When You Talk to Your Self by Shad Helmstetter Ph.D
- On Writing Well by William Zinsser – The Best Book on Writing
- The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason
- The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy
After reading a book, take at least one action that’ll help you move forward with your personal development journey.
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Thinking Personal Development is All About Me
In the past, I’ve always thought personal development was all about me.
And when I first got into it, I was too comfortable with my life to actually apply anything I had learned.
So I didn’t take myself far enough to learn that personal development was beyond me.
Sure, it starts with self-awareness.
We are the starting point.
But that’s only the beginning.
The real deal of personal development (that I’ve learned) is the person you become and how you influence people around you.
You’re unlikely to set out to influence others.
But as you become the person you are meant to become through continuous improvement, you’re bound to make a positive impact on others around you.
Since my personal growth journey, I have become calmer, more grounded, and more relaxed.
I have life goals. I know where I’m going and what needs to be done to get there.
This assertiveness towards my life has manifested to the outside world.
I see myself doing things that I couldn’t have imagined doing in the past because I was too preoccupied with my own problems and my life.
I was too busy picking on my shortcomings and failures.
Changed ME Thanks to My Personal Development Journey
These days, I’m far more confident. Smile more. Talk more.
I find myself encouraging others around me when they feel stuck in life.
I try to provide them with the right information when they suffer from ill-health. I create healthy routines we can do together.
Listen to others more.
Be more understanding and empathetic toward others.
I used to be a super competitive person who had a scarcity mindset.
When you have an abundance mindset, you know there’s enough to go around for everyone.
There’s no need to be competing all the time.
With that realisation, your attention shifts to:
How to bring out the best in people and contribute to the world to create an abundant life for as many people as possible.
Competitiveness also came from low self-esteem.
Because I wasn’t truly confident in myself, I felt that I had to prove how great I was.
But now I know we’re on the same journey. Each carries their own demon to deal with.
As much as my personal development journey has changed me as a person to strive for a better life each day, I also recognise the good feelings I create when interacting with others, therefore making a positive impact on people around me.
That includes, of course, spreading good messages through my blog.
Personal development is an exciting journey.
What’s more amazing about it is that there is no end.
We keep going, stretching and reaching higher and higher.
I hope you enjoy your journey as much as I do.
In any case, if you’re struggling, shoot me a message.
I promise I’ll brighten your day, and we’ll soldier on together.
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Great article. So true. You can’t just do the research. You have to apply the techniques.
Thanks for your kind words, Justin!
Yep, action trumps everything!
All the best.