No matter who you are, there's always room for improvement. And there always will be.
Because when you hit pause in your busy life and reflect on your emotional wellbeing, small parts of your life in which you are not fulfilling your true potential bubble and rise to the surface.
When you stay busy and focused on achievement, you aren't as aware of your shortcomings.
You are worshipping results, outcomes, and other measurable signs of progress--the ever-elusive and never-ending goal of professional development.
As a life coach and licensed therapist who works with entrepreneurs and executives, I can both appreciate the mindset required for maximum professional growth and appreciate its limitations.
Many of my clients are working with me to reconnect with parts of themselves that they were forced to leave behind in their pursuit of progress. And many of my friends in this hyper-competitive marketplace are currently struggling with these same issues.
I even notice myself fall victim to this mindset. At times when I'm focused on growing my business, writing my dissertation, and interviewing for competitive psychology doctorate internships, my mind is moving at 100 mph.
I'm focused on results. I'm focused on progress. I'm constantly putting out fires. And each second of the day is allocated towards my goals--leaving very little time for self-reflection.
When I find myself in this mindset, I notice that my professional growth skyrockets, but my personal development stagnates. And that's not unique to me--that same discovery has been observed by my insightful clients and friends.
The truth is that improving as a person while achieving professional success is difficult. While these two motives--to improve yourself and to maximize professional growth--can coincide, they often are contradictory.
There just aren't enough hours in the day.
In light of these insights, the list below is written for my clients, my friends, and myself. They are simple habits that, when integrated into your life, make a significant improvement in the pursuit of professional and personal growth.
1. Listen to your body to make informed decisions about what activities to include in your day.
Your body and feelings have innate intelligence. Check in with your body to determine if you need some additional exercise or relaxing time to release stress.
2. But also use your mind to set healthy boundaries for your body.
It's also important that you exercise intellect by creating a schedule that benefits your mind and body. If you're on auto-pilot, then you won't meet your goals.
3. Schedule down time to relax and re-energize--especially when it's difficult.
Self-care is the first thing to go when you're stressed. But without it, your growth isn't sustainable.
4. Practice deepening your presence through consistent meditation.
This simple habit will give you a clear window into your thoughts and feelings. With practice, it will help you feel grounded, improve your focus, and help you create more fulfilling relationships with others.
5. Work through emotional barriers that prevent fulfillment through therapy or coaching.
Another foundation practice of personal and professional development, therapy and coaching helps you stay on top of bad habits, release emotional tension, and builds self-awareness.
6. Schedule time to consume inspiration rather than only creating output.
Read a good book. Listen to an audiobook. Connect your mind to something that motivates and inspires you so that you can continue adding fuel to your fire.
7. Always follow your intuition and gut instinct--regardless of what your mind thinks.
The better you can embrace and live by this rule, the happier you'll become. The mind is a good problem-solver, but intuition is the best truth-finder.
8. Do whatever it takes to maintain relationships that bring you fulfillment.
Set reminders. Schedule calls. Travel. And above all else, share what you're really thinking and feeling with people you trust.
9. Reconnect with your lightness, playfulness, and creativity to keep yourself young at heart.
Don't let the parts of yourself go that you value--you need them to live a balanced and healthy life.
10. Surrender to something greater than yourself and connect to that every single day.
No matter what that means to you or what that is--find it, and connect to it. That type of force puts everything into perspective.
Practicing those ten habits will make you a better person. And when you practice becoming a better person while also challenging yourself to build professional success, you live an eventful and fulfilling life.