If you scroll through my Instagram feed you will quickly conclude that 90% of it is comprised of inspirational quotes and “ways to improve yourself.” Self-improvement has become a hot topic in the world of celebrities and social media influencers. Waking up at 5 am and hitting the gym followed by a healthy breakfast is a popular approach to better yourself nowadays physically and mentally. While I believe those strategies are beneficial I trust that there are deeper ways personal growth happens. In my opinion, to grow and develop as a person, several elements gradually need to take place. That includes expanding your comfort Zone, reflecting on positive and negative character traits, accepting where you are, having morals, and most importantly always being open to gaining new knowledge. Growth does not mean being required to change, but having the option to evolve. First, when it comes to character traits, it is important to think about which ones are serving your highest interest and allowing you to grow or holding you back from being the best version of yourself.
To not feel held back, I am currently working on being more outspoken by expanding my comfort zone. That fear inside of me has limited me and has stunted my growth tremendously. As mentioned in the podcast titled “Is There a Limit to our Self Growth?”, Taylor Gage explains that when you take a small step out of your comfort zone, in a short amount of time, that step is no longer intimidating and is now enveloped within your comfort zone and will continue to grow. More recently, I have been working to expand this trait when I am with my family, my friends, and in my classes I have concluded that my lack of this particular trait stems from being the youngest in my family. For example growing up at family dinners, I was constantly spoken over that formed this idea in my head that I had nothing of significance to contribute because I was young.
It taught me to do more listening than talking the older I get the more I believe this trait can be transformed, and I do not hold back anymore. I have been working on speaking my mind and not being afraid to share my thoughts and opinions. I have seen some growth and development in this aspect of my personality and plan to further develop it by expanding my comfort zone every once in a while. After all, it is how we grow a characteristic I have reflected upon and admire within myself is generosity it is a trait I plan to further enhance and expand. In the philosophical article titled “Generosity”, Descartes tells us that generosity is “the key of all the virtues, and a remedy for all the disorders of the passions” (Qtdl in Hunt) Since I was little, volunteering and giving to others has been my passion. Lemonade stands and bake sales began when l was about seven years old, and those profits always went to the Humane Society. The irreplaceable feeling I obtained by doing that was carried with me throughout high school.
All four years, I spent after school and weekends volunteering at several organizations while I have always enjoyed giving back. my interest in helping is also a result of my grandparents’ actions. For instance, a couple of years ago, they created a foundation that allows them to donate a certain amount of money to a variety of charities biannually. I admire their desire to do that. and I am convinced that they have strongly influenced my urge for giving to those in need. They reassured me that I will continue to make that a priority early opportunities I have had to be selfless built my character, but more importantly, it has allowed me to leam more about myself and grow into the person I aspire to be. While we have positive traits that we want to enhance, I also believe that certain negative traits should be evaluated and tweaked if necessary. A trait I have deeply reflected upon within myself is procrastination.
It is a trap I have become more susceptible to over the years as stated in the Merriam-Webster dictionary, procrastination can be defined as “The action of delaying or postponing something” (“Procrastination“). A quote that is more accurate is “Procrastination- Turning One Of These Days Into None Of These Days,” According to a book titled “A Mind For Numbers”, Barbara Oakley states “We procrastinate things that make us feel uncomfortable.” I agree with that statement because personally, this negative characteristic has always been linked to the school. For example, I would constantly avoid a big project or math homework for as long as possible. That only progressed into putting off applying for college or smaller things like going to the gym and working on self-improvement. It has taken a lot for me to realize that this needs to be addressed immediately now that I have started a new school year with a fresh start, I have been deliberately working hard to take my current level of procrastination down a few notches and have noticed a difference.
I can confidently say that I have ameliorated this trait significantly, and it is reflected in my grades. Over the years I have Learned that the common phrase “I will feel more like it tomorrow” is not the right approach, and it is easier to just get a task over with. Another aspect of self-growth is learning to accept where you are and not feeling pressured to meet the standards created by society. A couple of months ago, I was struggling with the idea of grasping this concept. For instance, according to society, starting at a big four-year university is “normal.” Because I am not currently at a university like most of my friends I feel like I have failed myself. As a result of that feeling, within three weeks of being at FSW, I was making appointments with advisors about how soon I can transfer, which has been my top priority since day one. It took me some time to realize I have constantly been worrying about what is “supposed” to happen next for me, without noticing that I am right in the middle of what I used to look forward to, which is simply having the freedom to gain new experiences away from home.
Once I made a conscious decision to accept my current situation for what it is, I began to appreciate where I am without any outside pressure. My journey is starting to feel less like a sprint and more like a marathon. as it should, although my overall goal is to attend a university by next fall, and I am working hard to get there, I will get there in due time. I am learning to stop having the mindset of “I’ll be happy when” An additional element of personal development is having morals, which I lake pride in Family first has made a huge impact on my life and my growth as a person. From a very young age, my parents taught me the importance of family. For example, Sunday night dinners with my grandparents have been a tradition since before I was born and are still occurring as selfish as it may sound, the middle school consisted of lots of begging my parents to let me skip dinner because I wanted to go with my friends instead. No matter how much I begged the outcome was always the same, they made sure I understood the significance of seeing my grandparents every Sunday and how happy it made them.
As I get older. I am learning to appreciate having such a close family I have discovered that having that commitment has made me the person I am today I strongly believe that without morals, I would have little to no respect for other people or myself. This aspect of my life has greatly contributed to my personal development and I plan to continue to consciously work on sticking to what I believe is right and wrong. A second moral I believe has encouraged my overall growth is “Treat others how you want to he treated,” as cliché as that statement is, I believe it is extremely important. It is a concept that has been drilled into our heads since elementary school, and although many people have not carried that idea with them all these years, I have tried my best to. There are a few challenges, however, that come with choosing to live by this mindset you are constantly stuck having an internal battle between treating others how you want to be treated or treating others how they treat you.
In the past, it was easy for me to stoop down to someone’s level tenth grade me probably would have but I have matured and learned to understand the significance of not allowing someone else’s words or actions to negatively affect me. Specifically, over the summer, there was a situation with a co-worker of mine where she was continuously acting superior to me and other employees. Everyone advised that we act the same way toward her. However, after contemplating whether I should stoop down to her level, I decided to just let it be and not react because that would not have any purpose. I took the “treat others how you want to be treated” approach. Since this shift in my mindset, I have seen a major difference in how I handle certain situations and a lot of growth within myself that I am pleased with. Although I am satisfied with my personal development in this area so far, I plan to further improve my mindset and live by my morals.
To conclude, personal development is a concept everyone, including myself, wants to master. We wonder if there is a limit to our se|f<growth and how we can exceed it. After researching this topic with an open mind, I have learned that there are no limits. We are constantly growing and improving ourselves in every aspect without even realizing it by writing this essay, I have discovered so much about myself and realistic ways to promote self-improvement daily. Personal development has become my favorite topic to assimilate, and I am fascinated by the variety of knowledge there is to gain. My goal is to continue to grow and figure out who I am and the person I aspire to be I hope that everyone. at some point in their lives, can realize that theirjoumey of personal development will never reach a dead-end, focus on themselves gain knowledge reach their goals grow.