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How Do You Define Personal Growth

coaching lead your life positive personal change self improvement take the leap Feb 20, 2024
The Leap To Lead
How Do You Define Personal Growth

Personal growth is one of my core values, it is something that I prioritise not only for myself but for my family and my clients. So what does personal growth mean?

If you google it, you will get a definition that sounds something like this: “Personal growth consists of activities that develop a person's capabilities and potential, build human capital, facilitates employability, enhances quality of life, and the realisation of dreams and aspirations.” Sounds pretty amazing doesn’t it! 

So when I share with you that it is one of my core values, it means that I am always focusing on what can be learned, what can be developed, what can come from this experience, this situation to move myself (or someone else) forward. Moving forward is the only way we can start to realise our dreams, it is the only way to start living the life we truly want. If we don’t move forward, we remain stuck on the treadmill, making the same mistakes over and over but expecting different results! Yep, Einstein’s definition of insanity.

Let’s face it, we all make mistakes, yes me included LOL! But I want you to start thinking of mistakes differently. Mistakes are just life lessons, they are a moment or an experience that we can reflect on and learn from. Mistakes are our opportunity to realise that we are human, we’re not perfect, and we should stop trying to be. Mistakes are our opportunities to share, to support each other, to grow. 

I’m thinking of my youngest at the moment, Madam S. She was getting frustrated with herself about her English assignment last week. Her teacher insisted that she needed to plan her work better to ensure she was able to meet the requirements of the task - a letter to her teacher helping her to get to know them. I sat down with her, just for a few minutes, and with my arm around her shoulders we talked about the subject - English. That it’s all about reading and writing - reading with comprehension and understanding looking for opportunities to draw conclusions from the information; and writing with description to illustrate the detail, the feelings, the experience. It’s not about a statement, it's about how you describe that statement. The little lightbulb went off, she got her notebook out and planned. Then the next few nights she worked on her letter, she submitted it this morning and I can’t wait to hear how she goes with it… I’m not sure why, but the word excessive was used a few times LOL!

In this example, it’s not about her first attempt being under par for her teacher, it’s about the opportunity that this created for Madam S to learn and develop as a student, understanding better what is expected from her and seeing how she could make that happen.

Personal growth is at the core of everything I do and who I want to be. I could have simply given Madam S the answers, the tips of what she should include in her letter to make it ‘better’. But what would she have gained from that? The next assignment I would be doing the same thing. Instead, taking the opportunity to explain the difference between reading a sentence and drawing conclusions from a piece of information; the difference between writing a statement “I live at home with my family” and describing the family “my dad is tall and I love it when he spends time with me in the kitchen teaching me to make pancakes” is priceless. 

Being able to make personal growth central to who I am and how I support others ensures that I am the best mother I can be; the best partner I can be; the best coach I can be; the best version of me. 

There has been quite a bit happening behind the scenes over the past year, a lot of personal growth that I've not shared with you. So I thought this week I would pull the curtain back a little and share some of the behind the scenes. Why? Because sometimes when you can see what personal growth means for others aka me, you can start to assimilate what it might mean for you. If you can see what personal growth has meant for me this past year, maybe it will inspire you to step into your own growth phase?

So if you’ve been with me for a while you will know that after my dad died in 2021 I decided to make some changes in my business. I worked with my coach Amel and the first question she asked was, "What have you been doing and what do you want to do?" sparked a complete rethink of my business. Et voila, The Leap To Lead was the outcome of that work, and I rebranded in April 2022. Then I knuckled down, I delivered amazing outcomes for my clients, continued to grow my  business and I enjoyed the feeling of being really proud of where I was going.

This growth continued into 2023 but with a slightly different lens. This past year I spent more time deliberately investing in myself. My own emotional and spiritual health. My own physical health. Still supporting my beautiful family, and my amazing clients, but as I said with a slightly different lens. 

I started paying attention. I really tuned into what people were sharing with me, and to the patterns I was seeing. Some of these being spiritual. For example, at the top of our street on my early morning walks I would come across a pheasant on a regular basis. Now, let me be clear, I live in downtown Auckland, I am literally next to a train line… and I’m meeting a pheasant! So I looked it up “An encounter with a pheasant can lead to a sense of openness in your life. A reminder to finally trust your abilities and overcome your insecurities. Embrace new beginnings.” I felt this pheasant was god showing me that I am amazing, asking me to be ready to start showing up and serving as He intended. 

This may be a little woo woo for some of you, but not long after these encounters a few things happened:

  • I tweaked a few things in my business marketing which resulted in some fantastic opportunities. 
  • I shifted my approach to supporting the girls, creating the opportunity to share “life lessons”. 
  • I finally found an online workout program that I could do easily at home to build my strength and flexibility. 

My personal growth didn’t stop there, I explored further my spiritual connection with an audio course designed for business owners, this was hugely impactful and I continue to dip into this.

I have been reading different books and articles, things that I wouldn’t ‘normally’ be drawn to. I find it’s shifting my ability to talk about different topics on different levels.

I have continued my learning in the space of business management and marketing, dipping in and out of networking opportunities and short courses, looking to sharpen myself and my business. And I am excited where this is taking me… watch this space!

Personal growth isn’t always about one big thing, one big opportunity. It can be, and often should be, about the little learnings we get from life and seeing them as an opportunity to move forward. Making little shifts in our daily life is much easier than trying to overhaul everything, which let’s face it is often limited in success. Personal growth is about seeing each experience as a step, the next right step for you at this time. 

How are you investing in your personal growth? Are you learning from your mistakes? Are you reading or listening to podcasts? Are you sharing with those around you? Maybe you’re taking a course or working with a coach? What’s important is that you recognise your personal growth, for the opportunity it creates to realise your dreams… and finally step into that!


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