Press release -
Difference between Personal Development and Self-Improvement
Personal development is essentially developing or enhancing pre-existing personality traits connected with advancing professionally and socially.
Personal development requires the willingness, the urge to learn, to change. For example, if you have difficulty getting along with colleagues at your office and realise the need to improve or see your career parish or at best stunted in growth, you realise that you absolutely must change. Your very survival probably depends on it.
Enhancing your personality traits or developing new ones is neither easy nor risk-free because you could end up learning something that does little to enhance your personality or may even worsen the situation. Personality development always takes you through new and uncharted territory but the rewards if done correctly, are worth the effort.
The risk of learning something new can be mitigated by spending more time learning it, essentially becoming familiar and comfortable with the subject. Putting into practice what you have learnt can initially be just as tricky.
Using a newly developed personality trait takes time, you will stub your fingers several times on unexpected hurdles or step into unexpectedly deep water. But if you have learnt to swim or know the basics of staying afloat, the depth of the water matters little. Every time you encounter these initial hitches and survive them, you become stronger and more comfortable.
Self Improvement Programs on the other hand, involves finding personal weaknesses and improving them usually through use of self-help books. Pick any Self-help book and you notice it offers you plan; a step-by-step path to improving a specific area of your life. Lose 3 Pounds in 3 Weeks, Three-Day to Better Memory etc. You see these books in any book store or library.
Perhaps the biggest difference between the two involves the differences in approach. While self-improvement is essentially a solo act i.e. usually picking up a book and learning the technique of improving the target area on your own and at your own pace.
Personality Developing on the other hand, usually involves some external help. This may come in the form of a video and books, or a live, interactive session with a personality developer. Personality development is more intense and tends to be time-bound. Theories are discussed and pathways charted. You are encouraged to think, the path to success is not carved in stone.
Sometimes however, the line between personal development and self-improvement is really blurred. This usually happens when a little bit of both are involved i.e. a bit of personal development and a bit of self-improvement. For example, wanting to get rich will usually involve a bit of both. Rich people tend to be supremely comfortable with themselves and possess a savvy personality. You cannot get there without Personal Development and self-improvement.
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