No matter where you are in your life or what you are pursuing, self-improvement is a vital part of your happiness and progress. However, too often our efforts at self-improvement fail due to work, school, family and friends taking over our time and mind. We are often unsure of which path to head towards at times and we can end up stumbling around, hoping we can gain improvement and happiness within our jobs, relationship or the lifestyle we desire.
When you plan to self-improve, it is critical to find your direction. You can do this by understanding what self-improvement is and by creating a clear, actionable plan to help you reach your self-improvement goals.
Two Types of Improvement
When looking at improving yourself it is important to understand the two types of improvement goals you can reach for. One is Self-Improvement and the other External Improvement.
External Improvement is the kind of improvement that can be gained or lost. Mainly focusing on money, fitness, credentials, status, friends etc. Whilst Self-Improvement is the kind of improvement that doesn’t change. It looks at habits, thought patterns, confidence, beliefs, learned skills and behaviours. These are all internal improvements
Of course, the two types influence each other for example, getting a great job with a good salary can start to improve your confidence, as such being focused and disciplined may start your journey for a career that can make you rich. The two types interact in many ways.
Why do we need to Self-Improve?
There are many reasons why we need to try and improve ourselves. One reason being, that it can help you become a better version of yourself, improve your relationships, your business or your job. One of the most effective ways to find out how you can improve is to ask the people around you and try to figure out what your strengths and weaknesses are.
Another reason is that self-improvement can often present you with new opportunities. Growth eventually leads to new opportunities. Focusing on self-improvement will help growth, a good place to start is by reading personal development blogs like this one as well as articles and books, then try to implement this learning into your life.
Furthermore, this will help to increase your self-esteem to higher levels. Having both the focus and confidence is ultimately the starting point to follow your dreams. You MUST believe in yourself and your dreams enough to reach for them and whilst growing, you are also building the correct mindset.
How to find the best ways to Self-Improve….
Identify your objectives – If you haven’t established a specific goal yet, think about what you ultimately want to accomplish. A good way to do this is to picture yourself a year from now.
Establish your purpose – What is the main purpose for your goal? A critical question you need to ask yourself in order to know where you are heading.
Tips & Ways to Self-Improve
Waking up early – Start waking up earlier and eating a good breakfast, this way you can utilise the full day. You should be able to achieve more throughout the day with the benefit of the sun providing your body with that all-important Vitamin D. I often try to set around 10 different alarms to wake me up in the morning and usually leave my phone on the other side of room meaning that I actually have to leave my bed to switch the alarms off.
Reading Habit – This will not only help you increase your knowledge base but will also help you to expand your vocabulary. Just as participating in a fitness regime will exercise your body, reading will exercise your brain.
Time Management – Also linked with waking up early. This is the best way to achieve your targets and goals. Break down what you need to do the night before and slot in your objections across a timescale.
Exercise Regularly – This is a great way to release stress while improving your body. This is also good for time management and rest periods. If you find it hard to make the time for exercise, you can try some Office “Deskercises” or even take short breaks during the working day to go for a walk.
Eat Mindfully – Eating the correct food is also vital to ensure that you feel fresh, energised and empowered to reach your targets and goals. I have started to think about how the food I eat will react within my body rather than how it will taste. Some great healthy food choices are beetroot, avocado, broccoli, dark chocolate and salmon. You should also allow yourself a cheat day once a week as this will help to curb those cravings and can also be treated as your reward for achieving a strong healthy week.
Alone time – One of the most important pieces of advice I can offer you is to take time out for yourself. This will allow you to set your goals, reflect on what you have achieved and try to assess how you can improve on previous targets. Meditation is a great tool for escaping the stresses and pressures of day-to-day life.
Step out of your Comfort Zone – Try something you have never tried before, perhaps a new activity of some kind and challenge yourself to push the barriers.
Challenge someone else – Create a competition with friends or family. Set out targets and see who can reach them first. Whoever wins the challenge gets a reward, for example dinner paid for by the loser.