Why does personal development matter?
When you’re building a business, it’s easy to get focused on the everyday tasks and start to forget about the bigger picture. Even more than that, you can worry that taking time away from “working” will hurt your business. While this may be true if you’re constantly blowing off work to stream some Netflix or hang out with a friend, there are some activities that will help you build your business better, and reach your goals sooner. What are we talking about?
Call it education, self-improvement, or even professional development, but we’re here to argue that time spent on bettering yourself as a PERSON will yield unexpected benefits when it comes to you as an ENTREPRENEUR.
Here are four big ways that personal development will pay off in your business -- and our top three tips for fitting this work into an already busy schedule!
Find Your Voice
Why are you doing what you do? How do you communicate your passion for your business to your community, or even to your parents? Unless you’ve been dreaming of working as an entrepreneur since you were a wee one, you might find yourself feeling shy or even embarrassed, afraid of sounding “salesy” or annoying. By focusing on the passion behind your business, and centering your activity around this all-important motivating factor, you’ll start to uncover your authentic voice. The more you use this voice to share your products, business, and passion, the stronger your voice will become. Many personal development resources are designed to help you uncover, understand, and communicate what’s most important to you!
Be a Better Leader
Whether you have a small team or are building a big one, you’ve got people looking to you for leadership. And lucky for all of us, leadership is not only an innate skill, but something that can be learned and improved upon over time. This is why we’re such advocates for coaching and mentoring, and learning from those who have done what you are doing. We don’t all have to start from scratch. Finding the right personal development tools will help you learn where you’re a natural leader, and where you might need to practice a little -- then equip you with the tools you need for all-around improvement.
Level Up Your Productivity
Whether it’s setting and sticking to habits, or finally mastering time management, there’s a personal development book or resources out there for practically any productivity hack you can think of. If the ones you’ve tried so far haven’t worked for you, then try another one. Looking at your work from a different perspective can help you find gaps that you can fill with activity that will help you reach your goals.
Build Up Your Business Savvy
How much do you know about how your business works? What are your blind spots? Do you know how the industry is changing? What are the leaders saying at your company, and your biggest competitor?
Personal development meets professional development when it starts to hone in on your specific industry, making this one a bonus feature of sorts. Make sure you are staying up on the trends in your industry and how your company is responding. The more you know, the more you’ll be able to respond to client inquiries, requests from your downline, or challenges from a competitor.
How to make it happen:
Now that you know what to do, how do you implement it without taking precious time away from your core business activity, or your other obligations?
The good thing about personal development is that a lot of progress can come from only a little bit of time and investment. Here are our three top tips for bringing more personal development into your life:
Set a timer and read a personal development book or resource for 10 minutes.
We’re confident you can fit this in, maybe during your lunch break or naptime. Keep a notebook handy and every day, write down one thing you learned, or that caught your interest. Once a week, or if that’s difficult, at least once a month, review this short list of highlights and see what’s still resonating with you, compelling you, or challenging you. Make this something to focus on in the next week or month!
Create a business book club with your sideline teammates or upline leaders.
You can rotate through different books or resources (e-courses, podcasts, articles, or even team trainings!) so you hit on various topics that appeal to each of you. Make this a collaborative effort! If it seems too much, you can even break up a book and each take a chapter, then summarize the key points to each other. Not only is this great team-building, you’ll all learn from the others’ experiences!
Discover a new podcast and listen to it while you’re at the gym or on a walk.
True, multi-tasking can be counter-productive -- but if you’re going to be listening to something while you workout, a business or personal development podcast can be a great choice. Even if you’re not paying complete attention, it’s an opportunity to introduce new ideas and concepts that you can mull over hours after your workout is complete! Some of our favorites to start with? Rachel Hollis's RISE podcast, and the ladies at Being Boss.