9 Activities that improve personal development
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9 Activities That Improve Personal Development

If you've ever wanted more from your life and didn't know where to start, you can start here.
Read the list, copy it and print it and read it again. And most important, commit yourself to using the activities on this list, not just read them. You will only get results if you take action as fast as possible and I really hope you do this. Enjoy!

 1. First step
One of the most important things you should start with to improve personal development is to read books on personal development, motivation and other related topic. You can find all the books you will ever need at a library and if you don't want to buy a book then just loan one from a friend or public libraries. Heck, if you're in my side of town I'll even lend you one of my books smiley! The idea is to get them, read them and use their knowledge. This is why books were made: to booksshare knowledge on a particular subject, and personal development books are one of the most interesting and exciting books you'll ever read.

Reading them gets you in a state of great motivation and that's why I recommend that as soon as you read something that motivates you - it can be a word, a phrase or a story - start doing something that you always wanted to do but always seemed to postponed it for another time and place. Do it now while your in this state of motivation and you will feel extraordinary! And this is just the beginning. Do this as often as you can and you can accomplish more in a single day than most people do in a month or even a whole year! A great way to start is by reading "Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude" by Napoleon Hill and W. Clement Stone. Reading, getting motivated and taking advantage of this state and taking action is one of the best activities that improve personal development.   

 2. Do you have a model (hero) which inspires you in life?

modelWell, then you can turn this into one of the best activities that improve your personal development very easily. A model or a hero is a person that by his actions he has set himself so apart from others and done so many things that seem unbelievable for you. Sometimes, even mentioning his/her name just sends shivers down your spine and fills you with admiration. If you admire someone so much that you wished that you could be just like him/her than you've just found a great way to improve.

The best way to get the most out of your hero is to find everything about that person. What does he like? where does he get his energy from? what is his background? Has he ever gone through a life changing experience? If so, how can this help you too? Just start asking yourself a couple of questions, write them down and start searching for answers in magazines, newspapers, books and on the internet. And if you can, even go and meet that special person. (I will be writing on this soon so keep on the look out smiley A note here: your hero can be one from current times or it can be one that lived 200 years ago. How can you learn from a hero that lived 200 years ago? Simple. Read his autobiography and all that he wrote in his life and you will get so much value that it will amaze you.

 3. Do you listen to music in your car or at home?

musicWell then you have two options: the first is to continue listening to music and get no progress towards your personal growth and the second is to replace the music with audio books or mp3's on personal development. I used to listen to music also, but now I've divided this time in half: 50% or less (some days I don't listen to music at all) and 50% or more I listen to powerful self improvement audios on motivation, self confidence and other related topics.

This is a very powerful tool that will seed success in your head until ultimately listen to audio cassette you will become unstoppable! You can listen to audio whenever you feel down, or have some unproductive time. When you have a break at work for example, instead of just hanging around and doing nothing (I know it's great to do nothing, but this is even better) put an audio on your ipod or whatever device you may have and you will take advantage of your time. You can do this whatever your occupation may be: student, professor, worker, etc. And this way, day after day, audio after audio, you will become stronger and better.

Now to make this clear, when I listen to music, I listen to music that makes me feel positive, good, that motivates me. I'm sure  you have some tunes that motivate you. Listen to those often. I'm pretty sure that you also have some music for those moments when you feel lonely or miss your loved one (we all do have these moments). My suggestion (if you truly want to increase the number of activities that improve personal development) is to throw them away to the garbage can - ok maybe I was a little taught, but I want to point out that this sort of music is not helping you, it's doing exactly the opposite of that.

Music should make you feel ecstatic and free. It should make you want to get out of bed and embrace a new and wonderful day, not make you close you eyes and cry lonely in a corner, feeling blue. I'm sure you've had this sort of moments, I had a lot of them and I'm sick of it. Not anymore! In my play list more than 96% are positive melodies that motivate, inspire and make me feel good about myself and the world I live in. Life is sometimes hard on us so why make it even harder?  

 4. Ahh! Is it TV time already?

tvYou come home tired after a taught day at work or from school, you lie down in your favorite, comfy chair and push the "time wasting" button. This last one is a little nick name I have for my remote control (and the power button in particular). I call it this way because as soon as you push that darn button, a "glorious era" of time wasting has begun.

I think that more than 99% of the programs or shows that appear on screen are a complete waste of time and have nothing to do with the useful activities that improve personal development. So why did I bring TV if it has no use for us? Well, because it's useful! Now that was a shock or not :) I mean it's useful if you watch a video of a personal development seminar fro example. This way, you get two for the price of one: you relax after a tough day and you will also gain knowledge and feel better after watching something positive and motivating. Just compare it to the daily news were you usually see people run down by cars or even shot! It's a no brainer! 

And still some people prefer to watch TV! I hope you're not one of those, or at least if you are (I was one too so I understand) at least reduce this time and watch a video that helps you grow. I just remembered a great saying related to this (I just can't remember who said it thought :( but I'm still going to share it here and if I remember who said it I'll make the proper adjustments). It goes something like this: If your not on the other side of the screen, than you're losing your time! And it's 200% true! So, for your own good, stop losing your time, it's the most precious asset you have and it's far more important than money. So treasure it and use it for growing not just for hanging around!

 5. Personal development early in the morning?

alarm clockFrom all the activities that improve personal development the next one is probably the most simplest, dough sometimes not easy to do. And this is getting up early so you early to have more time and feel good about yourself - feel that you've achieved more in that day. It's a great feeling and if you haven't tried it until now you should definitely consider doing this.

Put your alarm clock to go off an hour earlier than you usually get up. When you hear the buzzer don't start complaining and moaning on how tired you feel and think that it would be great to get just 5 more minutes of sweet sleep! It never is 5 minutes. It's more in the hour range, so just don't do it. Instead, just jump out of bed. Don't try to think of what you're doing when the buzzer goes off, just do it as fast as you can. Stop your alarm clock and get out of bed. The sooner you do this the easier it will be. And I'm sorry to say that intention doesn't count for anything in this case. You can't say that you intended to get up! It's just a weak excuse. Only what you do matters. So stop thinking and just go for it! Do I hear an alarm clock?

 6. Join or form a group of positive people.  

group of peopleJoin an online community that seems to have positive members, but I definitely think you should also have an offline group which you can talk to face to face. Set up meetings once or twice a week and chose various topics of interest to talk about. In the beginning it's best that all the members share what they know and point out what they know more about, what areas are they interested in and what areas are they knowledgeable at. 

This will help a lot in the upcoming meetings, because by knowing ones areas of expertise you can make a list of topics according to the interests of the group. I personally feel that this is one of the most underused activities that improve personal development. It's so rarely used and yet it is so effective. Just think, 7-20 people who each are willing to learn and to share in on what they already know. It's 100 times more effective than what you will ever learn at school. This is "no fluff" knowledge, and you also make friends, great friends.

You will feel good and your social life will greatly benefit from this. And by brainstorming you and the others will get more productive ideas and by sharing you are actually receiving. It's a win-win situation. So do it! Think of some of your friends that you admire and that are knowledgeable in one or more regions and invite them in this group and then they will invite others and very soon you will be up and running. Or you could join an online group like I said before, and after a while invite the online partners to an offline meeting an see if you can form an offline group as well. 

One very important thing to remember here is that the only way that you are good to make and keep friends close to you is to pay attention to what they say. This is crucial! It's like showing them that you respect both them and their opinions. If you are not listening to what they are saying then you are not respecting them, and you will receive the same treatment. To help you out with this, here are 10 listening skills exercises that will be of real help to you.

 7.  What are your goals?

targetFrom all the activities that improve personal development, taking the time to set your most important goals is crucial. This is why I'm going to talk a little bit about this right now. If you haven't done this before don't worry, setting goals is easy but very, very important. I'm not going to go into detail here, as I'm going to write an article on setting goals shortly, but I'm going to address the essential so that you can get started right away.

All you need are a piece of paper, a pen and you. Once you have these, go to a quiet place and assure that you won't be interrupted for 30-50 minutes and start writing. What should you write? Write your most burning 15 goals, the 15 things that you have a craving desire to do or have. Ask yourself what do you really want to own in the next 3-12 months. what do you want to do in this time? This could be something from going on a trip to Las Vegas to buying a new house. It all depends on you. They're your goals. 

Be sure to choose the most important 15 of them. For this, I suggest you write more goals, about 30 or even 50 so that you will have more to chose from. After you've selected 15 of them, start prioritizing them by asking yourself this question: If I had these 15 goals to chose from and I would have to choose just one to complete which one would it be? The answer is your most important goal of the next year and probably the goal that will lead to the completion of your other 14 goals. This goal is very important. It has to mean a lot to you so that it motivates you and makes you take action and get it.

After you set your primary target, do the same thing for your other goals. Now that you've finished setting your goals you can get to work. Not yet. First you have to do one more thing. You have to set some sub-goals for every goal on the list. I suggest you set between 10-15 sub-goals for every goal. A sub-goal is an activity that helps you in achieving your main objective. For example, if your main objective or goal was to be a better tennis player, then some of your sub-goals could be: getting a 70% increase in serving, winning 3 competitions this year, improving your backend, etc. Now get to work and make your dreams a reality! Good luck!      

 8. Learn to give before you receive.  

givingTo improve your personal development you need to learn and abide this universal law. I've seen this over and over again. People that give before they receive, have the greatest success in life. 

I'm not talking about wealthy people that give a lot of money to the poor. It's just not the same if you have $1 000 000 and give $10 000 compared to having $1 000 and giving $100. Even though $10 000 is a larger sum, it's pretty late and it's only a small proportion of what you have and could give - the $1 000 000. If you have $1 000 and give 10% of your money to people that haven't been as fortunate as you, then you will feel happy, content with yourself and your success will multiply by at least 5 to 10 times! I know there are people that are selfish and greedy and give nothing away all their lives and still they are very successfully financially. Financially is the main word here. Because that's about it for their success.

These kind of people will often have problems in their marriages, with drugs, lawsuits, drinking, gambling, sometimes even if they are alright, one of their children has problems an so on. Just read the newspapers, listen to the news and you'll see that's the case. It's just life's payback for the fact that they didn't give before. You can avoid this. Just give and very important, don't aspect something in return. Give because you are giving to another human being and we all could end up that way some day. You can never know. Never underestimate the power of one dollar. For you it might not be that much but for others it may mean another day on this earth. You actually could offer a man another day of life! Just think about it: if you could, with a blink of an eye, give someone another day to live, would you do it? It's that powerful. So don't hesitate in giving and one way or the other you will receive. And it will be a lot more than you gave. 

 9. Avoid people that aren't heading anywhere.

brokeThis can sometimes be very difficult as we often have friends or even relatives in this category. But you have to do it. This represents one of the activities that either improve personal development or will destroy it. Hanging around this sort of people will mostly do you harm as they will drag you down with them. It's in the human nature to be somewhat lazy and after we find an area that we’re comfortable in, we stop striving to do more, to achieve a new level. 

We feel good were we are and we don't want to grow past this. I think we all experienced this at least once. In the beginning it seems like a good feeling, but after a while though, it could make as feel like we aren't exactly doing anything with our lives. We tend to go from day to day without even knowing what we want from that particular day. We hope for the best but we don't do anything to get the best. This is a very dangerous state of mind, and I say mind because it's all in your mind.

You can always decide what to do, when to do it and how you want it done. You can decide to grow or to remain were you are. It's all up to you and though not easy at first, once you take the conscious decision that you want more from your self and your life, it will only get easier day by day. And you will begin to feel that you are heading somewhere and you will live this life a hundred times more than someone who is just sitting back and relaxing. The success you truly deserve will come to you one way or the other. You just have to continue growing and it will come. It always comes to people who search for it and never give up until they find it.

I embrace you,

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