In today’s crazy world, many people around the globe have been forced in lockdown, staying at home, and with good reason. As the world struggles to cope with COVID-19, now more than ever is a chance for you to complete some personal development activities.
Up until recently, many of us have struggled to find the time to devote ourselves to self-improvement. Now that an excellent opportunity has arisen, please do not waste it. Staying at home does not mean you have to spend endless hours watching TV, however, if you are going to watch TV, make it count. Instead of mindless TV or endless re-runs try to watch documentaries.
I have compiled a list of some things I am doing at home that is helping me to reach my full potential in my quest to become a more professional person.
Watching documentaries– Knowledge is power, and when you watch a documentary, you gain an incredible amount of knowledge, which can be a great topic of conversation with a stranger. Furthermore, those real facts you have just acquired can be stored away for another day in time, that might just come in handy someday. There are a plethora of documentaries on platforms such as Netflix. Today I watched Pandemic and what was filmed 12 months ago has become a reality today.
Keeping fit with some exercise– There are many ways to achieve fitness. However, one of the most effective is High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). The idea of HIIT is to go as hard and as fast as you can, raising your heart rate to about 80% of your maximum heart rate for 15 minutes. It does not matter how you achieve this. You can do HIIT at home with very little or no equipment. The important thing is to raise your heart rate. The benefits of HIIT include,
Improve your circulation
Increase your Cardiovascular system (Heart)
Aid in fat loss
Add some lean muscle to your body
Learn to touch type- Many websites on the internet offer touch typing course. The one I like the best is @ http://www.typing.com has free courses and can teach you how to touch-type very quickly. I have been doing the tests for 15 minutes per day, and this has improved my skills in touch typing. The features on this website are enormous. There are lessons and tests with results so you can see your improvements. The more you practise, the faster and more accurate you will become, and the best thing is it is fun and easy to use.
Learn a new language– On your smartphone, you can download many free language applications. One of the best language applications is called Duolingo, and it is free to use. It takes between 5-10 minutes to complete each lesson. You can learn to speak, write and learn grammar from over 35 different languages, including English. Practice for 15 minutes per day, and you will be speaking a new language in no time at all.
Learn a new skill or advance your current skills- Do you know what all the buttons in the taskbar of Microsoft word or excel do? Do you know what the F buttons on a keyboard are for? You may not be advanced at computers or Microsoft word or excel. However, with only fifteen minutes of training per day, you can become advanced in any computer program you like, and very fast as well. LinkedIn Learning has a multitude of training courses that can assist you in learning or developing a skill. Learning or enhancing your computer skills is just one example, there are a plethora of other skills you can learn. Learning a new skill on LinkedIn learning allows you to link the completed certificate directly on to your LinkedIn account for everyone to see.
Catching up on your Social Media- If you enjoy using social media, try writing an article, reviewing something, tweeting, post a photo or respond to another person’s post. If you have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tiktok, Snap chat, then this is a big task. The more social media accounts you have, the more onerous this can be. I have limited myself to LinkedIn as my primary social media account. I have linked anything I do here with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. The best way I found to link everything is through my WordPress website. Most importantly now is the time to make solid network connections.
Write a blog – Writing a blog helps you to improve your writing skills, typing skills, grammar, spelling and punctuation. All critical skills to be more professional in your day to day life. There are a surfeit of blog sites you can use for free if you just want to blog. However, if you are looking to get a big following and interested in making some money. Then I suggest getting a blogging website designed especially for a sole trading business, such as http://www.wordpress.com (such as my website here).
Read a book– Try not just any book. Think about how choosing a book where have no knowledge about the subject. Choosing a book to read that you have very little or no experience can help you to learn something new. For example, if you do not know how to start a business, read a business book. It is amazing the kinds of things you learn and the ideas that are generated when you read something you do not know anything about.
Study a course and gain a Qualification- Now more than ever is the time to start or complete your course. Many TAFEs and Private training organisation have more their courses online, which means you can study from your home. Of course, not all courses can be achieved by 100% online. However, if you get the learning and some assessments out of the way now. When it comes time to do the practical assessments, the Pandemic will be over, and you are finished. Gaining a qualification leads to a better job, higher pay, benefits, and better job satisfaction. In Australia, you may even be able to access some government funding which could see your course costing $0.
So there you have it. Some of my top things you can do to increase your personal development, sharpen your mind, exercise your body and improve your skills. At the same time, you are stuck in Isolation or lockdown.
Now it is your turn, you can use all or some of what I have suggested, or you can make up your own.
One last note, I challenge everyone to go through their contact list on their phones and reach out to every single person on your phone. Send every person in your contacts an individual special message to check in on them, either an SMS or phone call. I did this, and I was surprised by the massive amount of support I received back. I also found out that a few people in my list no longer had that phone number, so I was able to update my contact list at the same time.
Be your Best Mentally, Physically and Emotionally
I wrote and posted this blog one year ago but now more than ever it is valuable so I thought I would add and re post.
Have you ever thought to yourself how you got so out of shape? Usually, life gets in the way and we end up compromising our health and fitness for marriage, work, kids and life in general. We are so busy living we think we have no time to exercise. Then one day we wake up tired, overweight, old looking, unfit and depressed. Sound like you?
I have trained hundreds of men and women who have all thought this exact thing but just don’t know how to make a change, their lives have become such a routine that they do not have the motivation or inspiration to make a change, some people do not know where to start, do not have the time, money or both. However with the world the way it is at the present moment, now is a great time for many of us who may be stuck at home to start exercising.
Let me tell you that if you do not make a change now, you will have time to be sick and that sickness could cost you a lot more than just time and money. I understand just how hard it is to start on a healthy life path and stick to it. I myself are constantly challenged everyday. However, it does not have to be hard, hurt or be time-consuming, all you need to do is find what is going to fit into your weekly routine. I will not lie, it will be very hard in the beginning but I promise you if you stick to it, it will become easier and you may even fall in love with your new lifestyle.
How to start- Step One is to evaluate your fitness and overall health. If you have not exercised if over 12 months or are in extremely poor condition, then may I suggest you go to your doctor and get a full physical. This is extremely important as you may be boarding on a variety of different illnesses and exercising could trigger a really bad reaction, for example, a heart attack. Get a doctors clearance.
Step Two is to think about what exercise is going to work for you and something that you are going to stick with. I recommend joining a gym but if you can not afford a gym then there are a plethora of exercise groups that are free, such as walking groups, running groups etc. There are many inexpensive options for joining a gym such as off-peak memberships, these can be as little as $5 a week, that’s only one coffee is some areas. Sometimes we have to give up some of our luxury items to make these changes. If money is no option find a gym that works for you, again many options. I use a 24-hour small size gym as it works for me. Unfortunately joining a gym right now for most of us is impossible, but you can join an online gym for now.
Much research has been done on people using a gym and it has been found that, the majority of people who join a gym will not go more than 5km to a gym that is either from work or home. Therefore find the closest gym to your home or work. Try before you buy, just about every gym will give you some sort of deal, like a 7-day pass.
Step Three Get started, start slowly and build yourself up. Slow and steady will be the key to your success. This is some really important advice. I have seen time and time again clients start a gym routine all gung ho, they try to train like they are in their twenties and it always ends in them quitting. You must take it slow and make gradual changes, remember that you are making a lifestyle change, a change to last the rest of your life and it can take a long time to change.
Unfortunately there is no quick fix. Reality shows like the biggest loser where contestants lose a huge amount of weight in a very short time is not a reality, most contestants put all the weight back on soon after the show finishes and their fame fades back to their old life. However, it is possible to lose a huge amount of weight in a controlled environment, but is it the safest and best way?
Step Four Get yourself a program. The program is your guide to your training. It could be a weight/strength training program, cardio-vascular program or as I advise a combination of the two. To be successful you need to do some form of weight training (see future bogs on various weight training routines) for strength combined with a cardiovascular program for your fitness.
I will be providing many various generic programs in future blogs, however, if you can not wait and would like a personalised program I can write one for you for a small fee. Please check out my shop on my web page for a program to suit you. I can also provide workout videos if you are stuck for motivation.
Be your best- Physically
Have you ever needed a reason to do or give up something but just could not find the motivation to follow through or stick with it?
Well, I may just have an answer for you!
Did you know that around this time every year many Christians around the world from different denominations celebrate Lent?
You may or may not have heard of the holiday. There is quite a lot to know about the Lenten season that leads up to what we all know as Easter Sunday, but I am only going to talk about the concept of Lent where the meaning according to the United Methodist Church is to be “encouraged to find our own method of confronting our sinfulness, remembering our mortality, and giving thanks for the gift of salvation we receive through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ”.
Although many people head to church, many also honour the beginning of Lent by choosing to either give up something or give themselves to a cause, (for example volunteering), for the 40 days Jesus spent in the wilderness. The idea of Lent is to give up something we really like, such as alcohol, chocolate, junk food, and swearing the list is endless.
This got me thinking about how you can use the concept of Lent as a powerful motivating tool to improve your Personal Development. I practice Lent as I am Christian and I like what Lent stands for “encouraged to find our own method of confronting our sinfulness, remembering our mortality, and giving thanks for the gift of salvation we receive through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ,”. But you don’t need to be Christian to use the concept of Lent.
To use the concept as a tool, all you need to do is think about all of the stuff you currently do that is contradictory to your personal growth, such as eating bad food, drinking alcohol, smoking, swearing, make sure you include unproductive thoughts and actions such as thinking negative thoughts, procrastinating, overworking, etc. Now channel all of these into a list of things you are prepared to give up for life.
If you are Christian and you practice Lent, then this can be a rehearsal to give up or change something that is derailing your success. But like I said before you do not need to be Christian, you can practice any religion or none, the exercise is to try this for forty days and see if you can change any of those unwanted habits.
Over the many years, I have added more and more challenging things to my list, and the difference it makes to my way of life is phenomenal.
Breaking a habit takes about 28 days, so if you have a reason, such a Lent then giving up has more meaning, and you are more likely to be successful. What you give up or change should come from your subconscious mind, your know the little voice telling you to “stop eating that”, “start doing that”, “stop thinking that way”, “stop talking like that”, “Volunteer more”, “Help more people “, the chatter is endless.
Remember it is not just food and drink that should be added to your list; it can be anything you feel is not working for you in your life. Everyone is different, so you do not compare yourself to others.
Now what I am proposing here is not just doing Lent or the concept for forty days but to extending that for life. Make sure you commit yourself by telling everyone you know as it makes it easier if people are there to support you, see my blog on smart goals.
Good luck and I wish you all the success in your Personal Development Journey.
Be your Best Physically, Emotionally and Mentally