This could be your best year yet. I’m not talking about just one area of your life, but exploding your growth in all areas. From your career, finances, relationships, and knowledge. It all weighs on the shoulders of the habits you create.
Today could be someday, or day one. It is up to you to decide. Click To Tweet
It is ingrained in us to get better. To push beyond the barriers of life. Trust me, there are many things that can get in your way. I know firsthand. Until I started focusing on my personal growth, I wondered why I could never get ahead. I was blaming everything but myself. I thought I had the worst luck imaginable.
The funny thing is, the harder I worked on my personal growth, the more success came my way. My “luck” seemed to turn around. The problem was I thought I could have it all. I eventually realized that nothing could be further from the truth. My life motto became simple:
Everything is a trade off.
How you spend the next ten minutes is a trade off for spending that time doing something else. Personal growth should be at the top of your time consumption list. It is the sole way to learn, perform, and achieve more.
There are a lot of things that can get in the way of our personal growth, but if you apply the habits on this list, you will demolish any roadblock that gets in your way. Here are 57 ways to accelerate your personal growth:
1.) Use the 1% rule
Can you get 1% better this month? How?
If you improve by 1% each month you will be 12% better this year.
What if you could get 1% better each week? You would be 52% better this year.
If you could improve 1% each day. You are now 365% better than last year. There’s power in 1%.
2.) Set Intentional Goals
Every action should lead you toward your goal. You need to set intentional goals in order to be successful. Let’s say, you want to lose 10 pounds. Don’t just write down “I will lose 10 pounds”, explain how you will do it.
I will lose 10 pounds in the next three months. I will do this by going to the gym four times per week.
On Monday’s and Tuesday’s I will lift weights.
On Thursday’s and Friday’s I will cross train.
I will eat healthier by eliminating carbs in my lunches and adding a salad.
If I am not on track to achieve my goal in two months I will increase my workouts to 5 days a week.
See the difference? You need to state how you will achieve your goal and what needs to be done if you’re not on track.
3.) Read Non-Fiction Books Every Day
Reading books pays dividends forever. The book “Rich Habits” found that the majority of successful people had a common trait. They would read non fiction books at least 30 minutes per day. 30 minutes a day means about one book per week. 52 books per year. Your knowledge will compound and you will be amazed at the results.
4.) Cut Off Negative People
Negative people have no place in your life. They create stress, anxiety, and bring you down. Cut them off now. The longer you hang on to them, the more they will weigh you down. Keep your circle small and filled with those who fit your aspirations. Life will become much easier.
Keep away from people who belittle your ambitions, small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.
5.) Limit Social Media Time
Social media has become the greatest time suck of the 21st century. Most people have no true idea how much time they spend surfing their social accounts. It’s usually 10x what they think. Ask yourself the question. Would you rather spend 30 minutes surfing Facebook or 30 minutes chasing your dream?
6.) Surround Yourself with Like Minded People
Surrounding yourself with like minded people brings out the best in you. Like minded people help keep you motivated. You celebrate wins together, help each other through failures, and bounce ideas off one another.
One great way to do this is start a mastermind group. The concept was originally termed by Napoleon Hill in Think and Grow Rich. This is a group that meets once a week, month, or quarter and discuss their ideas. Many entrepreneurs claim mastermind groups have helped them in their personal lives and business. It’s designed to help you navigate through challenges, with the collective minds of smart people. In other words, you leverage each others brains and thoughts. If you are in a slump, a mastermind may help you break the plateau.
7.) Live Modestly
When you live a modest life, everything becomes simple. You can take the lower paying job you love, because you are not tied to a fancy car payment or huge mortgage. You can take a sabbatical and travel the world for a year. You have flexibility to do what you want on your terms.
Modest living will keep you out of debt. Something to remember, the borrower is a slave to the lender.
8.) Write Daily
Nothing has led me to think more clearly than writing daily. If you are a terrible writer, there’s only one way to get better. You must practice. One way to do this is commit to writing 500 words a day. Why would you ever want to do this?
A.) Writing improves your communication skills at work. If you can write well thought out emails and memorandums, you will stand out at the office.
B.) Writing forces you to think deep, leading to more articulate thoughtful responses.
C.) Writing helps you to clear your thoughts. Sometimes I have no idea what I think about a topic until I put it on paper.
A blog is a great way to practice writing because you must write in front of an audience. If blogging isn’t your style, start a journal to express your ideas, but get them on paper.
9.) Develop Frequent Conversations Based on Your Goals
Discussing your ideas and goals with others is a great way to learn. You can bounce ideas off each other and end up developing an amazing product, plan, or process. Feedback is critical to your success. You can’t develop the perfect plan alone, you must get feedback from many different types of people.
One way to spark these conversations is to discuss self help books you have read. These discussions help you memorize the material and build off your ideas.
10.) Break a Sweat Daily
Exercise has amazing effects on your body. Not only do you look great, your brain functions on another level. It melts away stress levels, helps you sleep, and increases your energy. It’s amazing how beneficial a 20 minute workout can be to your day. Why would you not do it? Don’t neglect exercise, put it in your calendar and make it part of your priority list.
11.) Set Aside Time to Think
This may sound like a silly thing to do, but thinking deeply about what you want to accomplish is the lifeblood of achievement. Warren Buffett says that he spends the majority of his day in thought.
Are you an entrepreneur?
Set aside time to think about how you can grow your business. Where can you spend less? How you can incentivize your employees to work more efficiently?
Want to become an executive at your company?
Take the time to think about how you intend to get there. How can you get noticed? Where can you go above and beyond? How long should it reasonably take to get there?
Deep thoughts will map out actionable ideas that produce results.
Networking may sound like the last thing you want to do, but it opens up tremendous opportunities. Ever heard the phrase “It’s all about who you know?” Well it rings true in most situations.
There’s power in connections.
Are you a real estate agent? Go to the local REIA meetings and meet with buyers and sellers in the industry.
Are you a doctor? Attend educational meet-ups and seminars.
Want to own your own business? Network with other entrepreneurs at conferences.
Check out your local area and see if there’s any gatherings in your niche. If not, start one! The creator of the meet-up is usually the most connected in the room.
13.) Save As Much Money As You Can
Having a big savings rate creates flexibility. Flexibility allows you to chase your passions. By saving money, you are buying time. A high savings rate can lead to a much more fulfilling life in the long run. Do this by developing a non-materialistic mindset. Saving 10% of your income will take 40 years before you can retire. Who wants to do something they hate for 40 years?
14.) Add a New Discipline Every Month
If you procrastinate, committing to a new discipline every month can life changing.
Do you want to make your bed every day, but just can’t quite get the motivation to do it? Commit to doing it for 30 days in January.
Do you hate that your car is always dirty? Commit to washing it once a month starting February.
Do you want your lawn to be mowed weekly? Dedicate March to mowing every week.
Pretty soon these disciplines will compound. You will be accomplishing more than you ever have before.
15.) Create a Weekly Schedule and Stick To It
Schedules are mission critical. Why? They keep you on track throughout the day. Ever sit down to do a task and realize that you’ve been looking at cat videos for 30 minutes? You know the “cats scared of cucumbers” video gets you every time. Schedules eliminate that problem. You know that from 6:00-6:30 you have to accomplish your goal. No excuses.
16.) Invest As Much As You Can
I am always cash poor because I invest every extra dollar that I have. You want to make your dollars work for you. If you don’t want to learn how to invest, then invest in passive assets such as Index funds. Your money is of no use sitting in a bank account earning no interest.
Learn to control your emotions when investing. It’s buy low, sell high but humans seem to do the opposite. This is because most investors have trouble controlling your emotions. Don’t let this be you. Keep fueling your fire by investing whether the market is up, or down.
Visualization has been shown to be a huge contributor to success. CEOs, world leaders, and great thinkers, all use visualization as a daily practice. How can you achieve your goals? What are the ways you can grow for the better? Visualize yourself doing the things you have always dreamed of. Visualize the work it will take to get there.
When I played high school basketball I was not a good free throw shooter. I shot about 65%. A coach told me to visualize making the free throw before shooting. I started using this technique, and by years end, my free throw percentage had increased to 80%.
Your mind is a powerful thing. Use it to your advantage. Click To Tweet
18.) Watch Less Television
I love watching television. It can be a great way to unwind after putting in hard work. Don’t let television get in the way of you accomplishing your goals.
My guess is that most of you watch television every day. According to the NY Times, most of us watch about 33 hours of television per week. That is a lot of time that could be used for productive things that accelerate personal growth.
When I started to reduce my television consumption, I accomplished 10x more than I did before. Why? I was reading, writing, and thinking instead of being fed ideas.
19.) Learn How To Speak In Front Of An Audience
Learning how to speak in front of others is an art form. Something that takes practice. Most people hate public speaking, so they avoid it at all cost. If you can develop this skill, you will get noticed. Start a podcast, volunteer to speak at your local school, or present at work when needed. You will improve significantly with practice.
Practice creates prepared comfort.
20.) Learn From Others Success
Learning from other successes can be a great way to model your growth. Models are extremely important to our success. We can mimic models and tweak them to fit our values and goals. If someone found a way to do it right in your industry, it needs to be duly noted.
21.) Study Others Failures So You Don’t Repeat
You can learn a tremendous amount from the failure of others. Study failures in your niche. Understand why they failed and what you can do to avoid the same mistakes.
22.) Develop A Relentless Drive
Drive is what propels you through the tough times. It’s what leads you to ignore the haters and go with what you know is right, even when the entire world seems to question your decision. Develop a mental toughness. Listen to opinions, but only those who constructively criticize.
Drive pushes you to go beyond your limits. To put in the extra work, and crush the goals you have set out to accomplish.
23.) Be Slow to Anger
Anger can destroy a relationship you’ve built over years in seconds. Understand when to show your anger and when not to. Since anger is a reactive emotion, always take a step back and think. Should I be angry? What will my anger accomplish? Can I solve this problem another way? You must force yourself to think this way. In the moment it may seem impossible, but this could save you from a nightmare of events.
There is a time and place for anger. Anger can fuel your drive. It can set an example for your employees. I like to call it “the controlled temper”. When you control your emotions, you will always win.
24.) Chase Your Dream
This life is too short to avoid chasing your dream. Have you always dreamed of traveling the world? Develop a plan on how you can do it.
Have you always wanted to own your own business? What are you waiting for? There is never a perfect moment, you need to start now. Whether that is saving capital, creating a business plan, or developing your product. The right time to start is now.
25.) Embrace and Develop Your Creativity
I truly believe that there is creativity in all of us. We have to work to bring out that creativity. The way to unlock your creativity is reward your passions. What do you love? What are you curious about? Take risks to engage those curiosities.
26.) Limit The Amount Of Time You Check Your Phone
Your phone is a constant distraction. It destroys opportunities to develop deep, thorough work. Limit the notifications you get. If you are working on something important, use the do not disturb button. Let people know that you are working on something that is high priority on your list, and you will get back to them when it is complete. They will understand and respect your honesty. If they don’t, refer to number four.
27.) Cut Off Stressful Relationships
Stressful relationships will suck the life out of you. Cut them off before they get serious. They can destroy your drive, creativity, and mood. Simply put, they’re not worth it. If your relationship is causing problems now, it will only get worse as time goes on.
28.) Show Up On Time
If you’re not 10 minutes early, you’re late.
Showing up on time is the first indicator that you mean business. You are trustworthy, dependable, and respectful of others schedules. Always plan on arriving early. Why?
A.)You give yourself a buffer if something delays you.
B.)You are relaxed and prepared for the appointment.
C.)You avoid making excuses which always gives a negative impression.
29.)Work With People Who Are Better Than You
In the book Creativity, Inc., author ED Catmull, founder of Pixar, stated that he would always hire people who were better than him. He was so nervous that his first hire was too good, that he thought he may take his job one day. Why would he do this? The reasoning is quite simple. Those who are better than you push you to become better. You learn from their ideas, principles, and systems. If you have good people, they can take your company to the next level. Always be extremely picky who you work with.
Ask yourself questions. Can they take me to the next level? Will they push me to learn more? What positive traits do they bring out in me?
30.) Love People Not Things
Plain and simple, stuff does not make you happy. Your relationships with people do. Ask any senior citizen what they value more in life; things or relationships. I bet you will get the same answer 100% of the time. Spoiler alert, it’s relationships.
Make the time to build relationships with family and friends.
31.) Build Powerful Habits
Success is the collection of your habits. You need to create powerful habits to achieve your goals. Most of these habits should be geared toward your end goal.
Want to be a great musician? Then build habits that push you to achieve that goal. Practice your instrument daily, write songs, and study music.
If your habits are not reflecting your goal they need to change.
Habits build on one another. For example, say you begin reading everyday. That knowledge you acquire will allow you to have educated conversations with people. Those conversations will lead to networking opportunities. Those networking opportunities may lead to partnerships in business.
See the compounding effect? Raise your habits and you will accelerate your personal growth.
32.) 10x Your Life
Most people think small. They think cannot do something because they don’t have the skills, expertise, or knowledge. This becomes a crutch when they set out to accomplish a goal.
Want to sell one hundred thousand copies of your book? Make it a million.
Want to get your email subscribers to 10,000? Change that goal to 100,000.
Want to save 5 grand more this year? Make it 50 grand.
Limiting our goals, limits our results. Click To Tweet
If you set a goal too small, you will achieve that goal with no incentive to push beyond. If you set your goal too big, you will break through your original goal and maybe accomplish the 10x goal. Think BIG.
33.) Embrace Your Struggles
Your character is built through your struggles. Embrace your struggles. These are the moments that define your drive, tenacity, and overall ability to persevere. I have learned 10x more by struggling than I ever would through success. Why? You are forced to figure it out. You don’t receive a handout or gift. You push through and conquer.
34.) Learn Excel At An Advanced Level
Excel is one of the most overlooked skills today. If you work in a corporate setting and want to stand out from the pack, master excel at an advanced level. You will be able to pull data no one else has access to because they don’t know how. As a quick test, if you can’t do a VLOOKUP, or create macros, then you need to learn more. If those words sound like you just read Spanish, then you need to start with the basics.
Excel can do all kinds of things for your personal life as well. Track your budget, business growth, or even hobbies. Trust me, you will need it at some point in your life.
35.) Listen Before You Speak
Want someone to like you? Ask questions that allow them to talk about themselves. People love talking about themselves. There’s an entire chapter devoted to this topic in the book How to Win Friends & Influence People.
Listening allows you to learn from others. If you spend all your time talking, you will never get the other perspective. My suggestion would be to listen to others who are experts in a topic. You get the benefit of great ideas without it taking up a large chunk of your time and energy. Author Tim Ferriss is a great example of this. He interviews world class performers, authors, and leaders. His book Tools of Titans is a great read that complies many of his conversations and adventures.
Always listen first, it’s to your advantage.
36.) Never Expect Anything From Anyone
The majority of people are looking out for numero uno, themselves. This is why you cannot expect anything from anyone. Is your friend in a bind and needs to borrow $100 to make the electric bill? Gift it to them, you most likely won’t get that $100 back. If you expect to get that money back, you will be disappointed. People who expect things from others are always let down. This in turn leads to anger or resentment towards these people. This is a miserable place to be. When you don’t expect anything in return, you give with a joyful heart.
37.) Learn How To Create A Website
Newsflash, the internet is king. If you don’t have a website, you need to get one. I am a firm believer that everyone needs a home base.
Understanding how to create a website can be extremely beneficial to your personal growth. If you have the extra time, learn to code. If not, master WordPress. Then create an online store, blog, or niche site. Trust me, it will pay dividends in the long run.
38.) Actively Attend Webinars, Workshops and Training
Actively learning speaks for itself. These training sessions will explode your personal growth. They combine networking, conversation, public speaking, and learning all into one. Try to at least attend one conference a year. They usually last a weekend and can be extremely beneficial to your career. Ask your boss if they will sponsor you to attend conferences.
Attend workshops and webinars throughout the year. These are usually about an hour and can be completed online. You will be exposed to the newest ideas, technology, and news in your field.
The icing on the cake is you walk away on fire with motivation.
Volunteering is beneficial for many reasons. It gives you a sense of purpose. People tend to volunteer where they feel there’s a need. Whether it’s a food bank, animal shelter, or a non-profit organization, it gives you meaning.
A.) It gives you a ‘feel good’ attitude and increases your mood.
B.) Volunteering establishes relationships.
C.) You make a difference in your community.
40.) Improve Your Eating Habits
When I start to make poor food choices, my performance begins to decline. My brain feels lethargic, my motivation decreases and I feel like I’m in a funk. Yet, when I make the right food choices I feel energized and refreshed.
Make a conscious effort to eat foods that fuel your body. You don’t have to eat like a fitness competitor, but make sure 80% of your choices are quality foods.
41.) Be Curious, Always Ask Questions
Questions are the lifeblood of learning. Whether you know it or not, you are always asking questions. It’s ingrained in us to do so. We always want to improve. We ask questions because that is the way we improve, and keep improving.
Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, get better answers.
42.) Always Be Willing To Teach Others
Teaching others explodes your personal growth.
A.) It increases your expertise.
When you start teaching, people begin to see you as an expert. The more people who see you as an expert, the more opportunities you will have to teach, write, or speak. This sort of experience in invaluable for growing your personal brand.
B.) Teaching accelerates your learning.
Research shows that if you teach others, you learn the subject better yourself. Why? You work harder to understand the material. You recall what you are teaching, and you are forced to apply what you are teaching.
When you give to others by teaching, you will receive so much more in return.
43.) Schedule Time To Rest
Recharging your batteries is crucial to your success. Schedule time once a week for yourself. You can not go full speed at all times.
44.) Be Positive
Positivity is contagious. A positive person can light up a room.
Becoming a positive person increases your health by reducing stress and anxiety. Research shows that optimists are more likely to live overall healthier lives than pessimists. They actually found that pessimists have weaker immune responses to tumors and infections!
Positive people also perform better. The bumps in the road don’t phase them. They can brush off the negativity, and push forward because of their positive thinking.
45.) Stay Confident
There are too many competent leaders who lack confidence. Companies who put confident people at the forefront know they can accelerate their growth. They eliminate the corporate politics and focus on performance.
You can do the same.
Focus on becoming more confident by putting yourself out there. Be confident in your knowledge and skills. Control your work environment by staying organized. If you continue learning, stay positive, and build on your strengths, your confidence will skyrocket.
46.) Be Proactive Not Reactive
Being proactive is about being prepared. Stop handling problems after they happen. This will bring your growth to a screeching halt. We wait until our car breaks down so pull from our savings to fix it. This can set you back months from your savings goal. It is inevitable that your car will need repair at some point in your life. Why not save for that repair before it happens?
Maybe you own a cyclical business. Instead of waiting for times to get tough, give your business account a cushion for those tough times.
Be the most prepared in the room.
47.) Sleep At Least 8 Hours
If you get less than 6 hours of sleep, you are probably not producing at full capacity. Sleep is imperative for any person looking to accelerate their growth. It increases your energy, memory, productivity, focus and motivation. The list goes on. Why would you not want to be at full capacity? Go to bed at a decent time and try to get at least 8 hours.
48.) Develop Long Term Plans
To many people fail to map a long term direction for their growth. They fall into the trap of just looking at the near future. Growth requires a process. A process that must be followed long term. Start planning for the next 5-10 years.
Where do you want to be in your career in 5-10 years? Where should your business be? Where do you plan to live? What personal goals do you want to achieve? Tackling these questions will help lift the fog that hangs over your future. You can then take action accordingly.
49.) Keep Your Emotions in Check
Keeping a handle on your emotions is a powerful tool. It allows you to think clearly and rationally. The best investors in the world buy low and sell high. Yet, a large portion of investors do the opposite. If the stock market crashed today, the majority of investors would panic and sell, resulting in billions of dollars lost. What do professional investors have that the average investor does not? Control over their emotions. They realize that in a down market, good companies are on sale. They begin to buy, and a few years down the line reap the profits. All because they keep their emotions in check.
50.) Go Above And Beyond
Always go above and beyond what is asked of you when necessary. Settling for enough is a cancer to your success. If you find one way to go above and beyond each day, you will stand out in your career, relationships, and goals.
51.) Understand Basic Psychology
Understanding basic psychology has opened up a whole new world for me. It increases your ability to communicate, negotiate, and build relationships. You begin to understand human behavior, think critically, and become effective in workplace dynamics.
52.) Do It Now
If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. If it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.
If you need to get something done, it’s best to do it right away. Get it out of the way as soon as you can. This will make your life much easier and your tasks will get done ahead of schedule. There is no point in waiting. Procrastination leads to stress.
53.) Track How You Use Your Time For A Week
Figure out how you actually use your time. We all spend more time doing specific things that we wish we didn’t. The truth is, it’s probably significantly more times than we think. By tracking your time, you can eliminate those wasteful hours. It trains you to think about your time differently. Start by tracking everything you do in either 10 or 15 minute blocks. Does your time align with your goals? If not, what can you do to change they way you spend that time? You will find you aren’t as busy as you think.
54.) Create An Education Plan
A personal education plan can change the way you go about your day. It can be simple, or detailed, but should map out your education goals and how you want to achieve them. For example:
I will read a business book a week for the next year. I will select the titles on a monthly basis according to where I am in my business. I will make sure to hit all key components at least 4 time a year.
Set a plan that will allow you to follow a system. This, in turn, will increase the rate at which you learn. No more surfing amazon wondering which book to buy today. You already have a plan.
55.) Never Boast
Never brag, never boast. You know what you are worth. Education breeds humility. Humility breeds self-confidence. If you are what you think you are worth, people will be able to tell.
Do not boast about tomorrow, because you do not know what a day may bring.
56.) Give Generously
Once you realize that money flows through you it will become a much easier life to live. Giving brings extreme joy into my life. Something that I don’t ever intend to ever stop doing. Experiment and see if you can give away 10% of your income. The rewards are much greater than what you can gain with that money.
The selfish consume, the selfless give.
57.) Settle For More
Complacency is the enemy of success. If you feel yourself ever becoming complacent you will stop growing. Settling for more means that you will never be satisfied with good enough. If you keep this mindset your growth will undoubtably explode. The question then becomes when?
If you begin to install these habits to your life, your personal growth will explode. Personal growth begins to build on one another. Your skills and habits begin to overlap and accelerate your time, energy, and knowledge. When you can’t change your situation, change yourself. Challenges make this life interesting. Overcoming those challenges are what makes life meaningful.