Personal Development is a vital element of progression. Whether it’s in your personal or professional life, focusing on personal development will have so many benefits for you.
Your confidence will increase, your vision of the future and what it holds for you will become clearer and you’re more likely to feel a stronger sense of identity.
In this blog, we look at why personal development is important. What the main differences are between personal and professional development and what the core benefits of personal development are.
What is personal development?
Personal development can come in many different forms but the outcome is the same. Essentially it is the process of improvement. A process that works on your awareness of self, knowledge, solidifies your strengths and builds on your weaknesses. It is an ongoing process that helps your form a stronger sense of identity and is often divided into three main areas:
Personal development can range from developing a talent or fulfilling personal aspirations to improving your fitness or learning a new skill. All these can be achieved as an individual or through a course run by an experienced individual/group in the chosen field.
Examples of personal development
- Learning a new language
- Taking up a new hobby
- Committing to a fitness challenge
- Volunteering at a local charity
- Reading a piece of literature from a new author
- Taking time out for yourself.
What is professional development?
Professional development is very similar to personal development in the outcomes. The main difference being that the end result is generally official professional credentials. These can include the completion of a certified course, gaining a degree attending supplementary training courses. These professional credentials can be achieved independently, gained within the workplace or through an education supplier.
Adding to your professional development doesn’t always end up with a certificate. Attending conferences and events where experts in their field deliver findings or teachings also count towards professional development.
Examples of professional development:
Completing a qualification
Attending a training course
Attending a webinar
Self-study and online courses
Attending exhibitions and conferences
Reading books, blogs or journals
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Personal and professional development has many benefits. When you establish targets for yourself and have a vision of how you want your future to look, your sense of identity strengthens. This has a direct effect on how you feel and act so in turn your confidence gets a boost and those around you will be sure to take note. So what are the core benefits of personal development?
Benefits of personal developments:
Learn about yourself
You’ll learn more about yourself than ever before, your strengths, your weaknesses and what you enjoy doing. This will help you feel a greater sense of purpose and will mean you’ll approach tasks with a renewed sense of being.
Set your goals
Learning more about yourself will help you realise what direction you truly want to follow, personally and professionally. This in turn means you can set clear, defined goals to work towards.
Feel the motivation
Knowing more about yourself and setting clear goals will leave you with a renewed feeling of motivation. You’ll feel more committed to the tasks at hand and will approach your personal and professional development targets with new vigour.
Progress your career
Working on your personal development has a direct correlation with professional development. The confidence and identity you achieve outside of the working day will most definitely have an impact on your working day. It may even lead to a change of career or a shift in priorities.
Enjoy the balance
Adding you’re your personal life by working on your own development will help you feel fulfilled outside of the working world. If you’re struggling to feel fulfilled in your career, spending time on yourself will help create a sense of purpose that will make the long day at work more worthwhile.
Can I add personal achievements to my CV?
Personal development can be added to your professional CV and, is in fact encouraged to show a potential employee what interests and hobbies you enjoy. Showing you focus on your own development demonstrates autonomy and commitment – two values that are often highly valued in the workplace. You also never know, you might share a hobby with your interviewer which will spark conversation and make the interview an enjoyable and hopefully successful experience.
Working on personal development takes time. See it as a gentle climb up a hill rather than a sprint. You’ll be more likely to stick to it by starting with little and often. So start by setting small, achievable goals and ensuring clarity on how you hope to achieve them. And don’t forget to enjoy the process, after all, personal development should be fun, right?
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