Making a Personal Development Plan
A personal development plan is a structured approach so that you can improve yourself. It is a tool to view what you can do to develop any aspect of yourself.
In the case of stress management, an effective personal development plan gives you the potential and the power to manage stress more successfully, which results in a higher quality of life for you.
I was determined to make such personal development plan so that I could learn how to manage my own stress more effectively, as well. I discovered that if you don’t learn how to manage stress successfully, then stress will manage you! I read up on things like How To Understand Stress Symptoms and found that even in my childhood, I had always been dealing with stress….although not always in the most effective manner.
I’ve seen what it’s like when stress from work, family and personal relationships get the best of me, so I knew I had to figure out a concrete way to manage stress before stress defeated me. If you can relate to what I’m talking about, then read on, because there is definitely a better way of life!
Personal Development Plan: The Initial Stages
Before coming up with the actual plan, I had to make up a list of the possible things that stressed me most. You might find this helpful because many times, we don’t tend to give these types of things much thought, given the fact that we consider them stressful. But just remember that putting it on paper gets it out of your system. Any stressful situation you put on paper does not, I repeat, does not have any power to hurt you.
This is actually the beginning of the healing process within your personal development plan.
I began with an incredibly long list, then decided to shorten it so that I could gain more clarity. At the end, I came up with the major categories, like work related stress, health stress, stress due to aging and financial stress. As I began to polish my list, I slowly began to realize that some of the “stressors” were very trivial and that things like lowering my cholesterol or getting along with colleagues, were things I could do a lot to change.
I finished my first list and read over again until everything made sense.
I made a copy of my first list and placed it on my refrigerator door where most of my lists were and another copy, which I saved on my hard drive. I would read it every day and add anything that I might have left out.
Pretty soon my list was complete and it was time to make my final draft.
Personal Development Plan: The Final Stages
When I was convinced that my list was complete, I made a final copy. While I typed away, I made special mention of specific things I could do to reduce stress and not vague things like “exercise” or “healthy diet”. I made sure that I had made it specific, like ride my bike for 2 miles or include 2 fruits and 3 vegetables for lunch or dinner.
It’s important for you to remember to include actionable steps and to quantify your actions.
So, I just kept on coming up with more and more concrete ways to reduce stress in order to counteract the specific stressors I had included in the list. This made my personal development plan for stress management much easier for me to understand and that made it much easier for me to do.
And did I stop at this part? No, I also wrote down many of the possible ways that I could prevent further stress and this made my list even better than it was before!
Now the tough part of every decision making process and every personal development plan is to actually initiate the plan with action (meaning new habits) and to make the plan work. I had to commit 100% to everything that I had written down. This is why it’s so important to remember to make yourself a plan that is simple enough for you to be able to stick with.
Making a personal development plan was a great liberating experience! It gave me new insights on the things I would have never known I could do.
How about you, when is the last time you set out to put the pen to the paper and write out your personal development plan? This summer has the potential to be the best summer of your life, so why not start now with your very own personal development plan?!
Is this the summer you are going to stick to a plan for meditation?
Or how about the summer you plan to not only get closet clutter relief but also stay more organized in general?
Please share your ideas on your plans for personal development and start you commitment in the comments section today, thanks!
Do you know someone who could benefit from reading this? Please remember to share it with them, thanks!
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