“You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude towards what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you” ~ Brian Tracy. We all have the qualities of self-development. Everybody has it in them to develop themselves to the fullest potential whether in work, sports, and relationships family endeavours, whatever. It requires a mix of qualities, mindsets and behaviour. For the past few months I have been doing a study on personal and self-development. I decided to come up with these 6 qualities that can have helped me in advancing my personal and self-development skills. Before we divulge so much further in to the topic let me make mention that this is one of those long articles I have posted so far.
The first quality is attitude. Let’s start by defining the word attitude, “the way a person views something or tends to behave towards it, often in an evaluative way” ~ the free dictionary. “Attitude is everything” ~ Unknown. The start and end point of all self-development work is attitude. Without the right positive and mental attitude in life, you will not achieve anything of great significance. Our mind is creative, and conditions, environment and all experiences in life are the result of our habitual or predominant mental attitude. Self-development starts and ends with the mind. If you have a negative perception of something most likely the negative result will be attained and vice versa. This means that the attitude of the mind depends mainly on what thoughts we harbour. The thoughts we harbour have a great influence on our self-development journey.
Man has the mental power to determine his future. They say all growth is from within. This means that all self-development comes from within. This theory is very true because you become what you think. Personal growth does not happen by chance or accident. You attract it to yourself. If you want to attain your personal development goals you must first change your thoughts and attitude towards life. Having the right mentality coupled with the right attitude will surely guarantee you better results. Yes setbacks will be encountered; the most important thing is how you treat them and get over them.
There is no success without challenges. To every successful person there are more challenges than success. I believe that our environment reflects conditions corresponding to the predominant mental attitude which we entertain. It is our attitude of mind toward life which determines the experiences with which we are to meet; if we expect nothing, we shall have nothing; if we demand much, we shall receive the greater portion. Attitude has everything to do with the mind. We must endeavour to have the right mental attitude as an ingredient to achieving our life’s objectives.
The second quality of self-development is faith. What is faith? The substance of things hope for, the evidence of things not seen is faith. “Faith is like a bird that feels dawn breaking while it is still dark” ~ Scandinavian. The one thing that distinguishes success and failure is self-belief. In fact the strength of your faith is the one thing that determines whether you conquer mountains or foothills. It means believing in something that you cannot prove or be certain of; something that you have not seen physically. It means believing in life’s magic. If you are a Christian like me the emphasis on faith in the bible is very well taught. Christianity is a faith based religion. In this regard religion plays a major role in helping to increase your faith. One of the best ways to increase your faith is by the recognition of our spiritual nature.
There is no self-development that can be achieved in isolation with faith. When you set out to achieve your goals, you are driven by the faith you have in whatever you are doing. There is no better place to express faith than in managing a sports team. The manager will only play players that he believes will deliver good results. The fact that he believes in them means he has faith in his players to deliver even before the match commences. Faith therefore, is an important ingredient to personal development and must be acquired at all costs.
One best way to acquire faith is to have positive affirmations. The bible says “faith comes by hearing”. True to this statement is that you must formulate positive affirmations that will encourage you to achieve your intended purpose in life. Replace all negative thoughts with positive ones and keep reminding yourself about them. I have some magic words that work for me. Every morning I remind myself that “I can do all things possible through Christ which strengths me”. This is my magic sentence it has done wonders for me even in the darkest situations I have managed to pull through. This is because I have faith that I can do all things through Christ.
I have come to realise and appreciate that the best source for increasing ones faith is to read the bible or shall I just say Christianity. As I said before Christianity is a faith based religion. I would encourage you to spend even just 10mins of your time every day reading the bible. You just may never know what you will learn.
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged” ~ the Bible. It is very easy to start the process of personal development, but it is much more difficult to keep it going especially when faced with tough decisions to make. That’s when we summon our courage and lots of it. The make or break of your journey to success could come to an end if you lack enough courage to see you through trying times.
Courage is the main distinction between being successful and being a failure. The people who succeed are those that exhibit enough courage in times of difficulties and are willing to go the extra mile. Those that fail have very little courage and are cowards. Wisdom, strength, courage and all harmonious conditions are the result of power and we have seen that all power is from within; likewise, every lack, limitation or adverse circumstance is the result of weakness, and weakness is simply absence of power; it comes from nowhere, it is nothing.
The following sentence underlines the link between courage and faith. “You must first have the knowledge of your power; second, the courage to dare; third, the faith to do” ~ The Master Key. Courage can help you eliminate one of the greatest enemies to success and that is fear. If you want to eliminate fear, then concentrate on courage. To achieve greater success always concentrate on the ideal as an already existing fact; this is the germ cell, the life principle which goes forth and sets in motion those causes which guide, direct and bring about the necessary relation, which eventually manifest in form. Courage is best illustrated by the story of David and Goliath in the bible. “It’s not the mountain we conquer but, our selves” ~ Sir Edmund Hilary.
The next quality is ability. You will have a tough time achieving your life’s intended purpose doing something you are not gifted for. Before you set out on your personal development journey, it is very important to recognise what your natural talents and gifts are. Having the ability and skills to pursue your life’s intended purpose using your natural gifts is much easier and enjoyable. It is of no use running a pig farm badly and only to realise that you should have been a footballer after thirty years. By that time pigs would have been your style.
The ability to produce is found to be the real source of wealth of the individual. It is for this reason that he who has his heart in his work is certain to meet with unbounded success. He will give and continually give; and the more he gives, the more he will receive. We as human beings are related to the creative principle by our ability to think. It is this ability we must acquire in order that we pursue our self-development goals.
Action is perhaps the most important of all qualities. We can acquire all the knowledge and have all the best plans but without putting them to action nothing would have been achieved. They say the richest place on earth is the grave yard. This is a place where you find plans that have never been put to test, songs that have never been sung, discoveries that have never been unveiled and many more things that would have benefited the human race.
Do not deny the human race what GOD has put in you. It is not for you alone but to be shared and enjoyed by us all. We are all part of one big family and if we all play our part surely the world would be a better place. Whatever plans that you have for your life please ensure that you start acting on them now even before you are very sure of what it is. The picture will become clearer as you go ahead and continuously act on your plans. Imagine how the world have been if the discoverer of the internet had not acted on his plans. We would have been denied the pleasure of communication and possibly you would not have read this article through this medium. But alas they acted and today the internet is a big medium of communication.
Action is the soul of business and the key stone of prosperity. Action is the only process that brings about results. Opportunity follows perception, action follows inspiration, growth follows knowledge, and eminence follows progress. Necessities are demands, and demands create action, and actions bring about results.
“All endeavour calls for the ability to tramp the last mile, shape the last plan, endure the last hours toil. In the fight to the finish, spirit is the one characteristic we must possess if we are to face the future as finishers” ~ Henry David Thoreau. There is no success without perseverance. All successful people will attest to the fact that they persevered before reaching their life’s purposes. I will give you an example of education. If you set out to have good grades or good results at school you will agree with me that you may need to put in extra for the results to show. Perseverance and endurance cannot be avoided in your quest for self-development.
Whatever you set out to achieve if you are not prepared to persevere you are most likely to measurably fail. Perseverance is the ability to continue moving on even when the odds are against you. “Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance” ~ Samuel Johnson. Napoleon Hill in his famous book “Think and Grow Rich” says “perseverance and persistence are essential factors in the procedure of transmuting desire into its monetary equivalent”.
There is a close connection between perseverance and faith. As you have seen we achieve our self-development through faith and perseverance. In the same way you can only develop faith through perseverance. I have also noticed that faith can be induced into our minds. The more you believe in something the more faith you develop. Remember faith is a very critical ingredient to personal development have faith in what you are doing and remember as always “standout tall and be counted”.