You can usually spot them – those people who seem to have everything “together.” They are self-assured, open, good communicators, decisive, focused, and persistent; they exhibit self-reliance, courtesy, sensitivity, sympathy, and open-mindedness. They have an “aura” of being comfortable in their own skin. And more important, they are successful in their personal and professional lives. People are not born with these traits. They are developed over time, through experiences and sometimes through a bit of formal educational coursework. But most often, they come from a determination to discover what personal development really is and how to pursue it through personal development training. The benefits of doing this are many.
Getting a strong sense of self
When individuals decide to begin a formal personal development training program in self-development, they begin with an assessment of who they are, where they have come from, their strengths and weaknesses, and acquired talents, as well as those they would like to develop.
This self-awareness is the first step. If a student does not have a clear picture of who he is right now and who he wants to become, he cannot set clear goals for future development.
A formal self-development program will begin with this assessment.
Developing interpersonal skills
Formal education results in specific knowledge and skills and makes a graduate employable. These are considered “hard skills,” and employers definitely look for them. But more and more, they have come to realize the importance of what we now know as “soft skills” – habits and behaviours that have a positive impact on others, in the workplace, with customers and clients, and within the organization as a whole.
Many classes that focus on these interpersonal relationship skills will foster such development in::
Conflicts arise in the workplace and in people’s personal lives. And they often trigger negative emotions. Someone with skills in negotiation is able to retain a calm demeanour, and through discussion, reach compromises that avoid negative conflict.
Anyone following the American political climate today has a first-hand view of disrespectful disagreement -name-calling, bullying, etc. This is not how conflicts get successfully resolved. Disagreeing, while still respecting the positions of others, maintains civility.
Translated, this means putting oneself in another person’s shoes and seeing a situation from his perspective. As such, it differs from sympathy. The ability to empathize prevents people from “digging in their heels” and refusing to compromise.
It takes strong mental armour to remain calm and respectful when a customer is angry, frustrated, and emotional. And it will require many of the skills that are listed above. The customer service pro knows how to engage in active listening and to propose solutions that will be satisfactory to an unhappy customer. According to Matt Miller, CRM Director for the writing service, “Every company is in the customer service business. And if these staff members have not been fully trained and practised.
Low morale will kill focus and productivity in any workplace. And it can ruin personal relationships too. Learning to understand the causes of low morale, to seek workable solutions, to put a positive spin on things, and to become a cheerleader of sorts is the stuff of which good leaders are made.
Becoming an efficient goal-setter
Everyone has goals. Often, those translate to mere wishes because there is no plan. Personal training development will help individuals develop the skills, traits, and habits necessary for developing and implementing a goal achievement plan. Such skills and traits include the following:
This is one of the most critical life skills an individual must develop. Without it, there is no ability to work efficiently and to be productive. A self-developed person plans and controls the amount of time he spends on various activities. And in a class devoted to this skill, he learns to use tools and techniques for managing all that must be accomplished in his professional and personal lives.
This skill is closely aligned with time management, but it involves a number of very specific skills that, when learned and practised, become routines. Organized people prioritize, write things down, develop daily routines, remove physical and mental clutter. Getting to this point means learning some very specific techniques which a course of the same name will deliver.
Some people listen. The self-developed person hears. And there are specific techniques involved in learning to hear. But “hearing” is only one part of effective communication. Developed people are able to bring several skills into their communication – honesty, conciseness, concreteness, clarity, simplicity as needed, and differentiation dependent upon the audience. A course in communication skills is an absolute must for anyone intending to pursue career goals or have a successful personal and family life.
Setting and Tracking Goals
All of the above-listed traits must be in place for a person to work toward the goals he has set. Now it is time to learn the process of actual goal-setting and tracking progress toward those goals. Goals must be reasonable, achievable, and they must be divided into short- and long-term. A course in goal-setting will teach participants exactly how to set those long-term goals and break them down. And, it will provide the techniques to set benchmarks and timelines, so that the goal-setter can stay on track. Goal-setting is a challenging skill, but once mastered, a person achieves focus.
Sometimes, people lack self-confidence through a series of life experiences that have met with failure. And those failures loom larger in their minds than the successes they have had. They are then unable to force themselves to take on new challenges for fear of failure or inadequacy. A solid class in boosting self-confidence may be in order. Students can learn the self-talk techniques that will begin to develop a different mindset, will learn the techniques of focusing on successes, no matter how small, and then develop the skills to build on those successes through practice. People who are confident and demonstrate that confidence to others achieves far more success.
In the end…
The benefits of self-development are undeniable. As stated in the beginning, self-developed people have all of those traits that make them admirable in the eyes of others. And when they are admired, they become far more valuable to employers and to those in their personal lives. You can pursue personal development training through your employer or on your own. The important thing is that you do pursue it.
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Kristin Savage nourishes, sparks and empowers using the magic of a word. Along with pursuing her degree in Creative Writing, Kristin was gaining experience in the publishing industry, with expertise in marketing strategy for publishers and authors.