Recently, I realized that I’ve used the terms personal development and professional development about 3 million times, but I haven’t ever fully defined what those terms mean from my perspective and how someone can intentionally engage with them. So let’s fix that, shall we?
Definition: the pursuit and engagement with anything that makes you more effective at your work.
The how-to: You can do this by developing the what, the how, and the who of your work. This is important because you have to be good at your job in order to be a great leader.
Definition: anything that helps you develop awareness, language, and practices for how you think and engage with yourself and the world, to increase your level of health and promote joy, resilience, and satisfaction.
The how-to: The path that I recommend is to first seek self-knowledge, then self-love, and then self-growth. When people think of personal development, the tendency is to jump straight to the growth part. They want to get better, smarter, braver, and I love that. But, if you jump to growth without first knowledge and love, it’s going to be unhealthy.
It’s also important to know that your personal development will be the foundation of your professional success; your career will only ever be as fulfilling and successful as the inner work that you do. At some point, your professional success and development will be capped by the amount of personal work you’ve done.
In this podcast, I give even more examples and details about how to develop in these ways. It’s a great one to listen to if you’re new to this world of personal & professional development or if you’re looking for fresh perspectives on how to level up your development.