According to research, about 90% of people who set New Year’s Resolutions have already abandoned them. Meaning that, unfortunately, personal or professional growth has again been put on the back burner. The daily demands of life have tricked us into thinking that we are too busy to devote time to growth, regardless of how important it is. Below are some common lies we either tell ourselves or have been told by others, followed by the corresponding truths.
- I’m getting older therefore I’m growing by default.
- I am just too busy.
- My boss or company doesn’t have a personal or professional growth plan.
- Reading takes too much time or I don’t like to read.
- I don’t have the money to invest in my growth.
- It’s someone else’s fault that I’m not growing.
- Growth is not necessary because I’m not in leadership.
- Getting older does not guarantee growth; it only guarantees gray hair and wrinkles.
- YOU DO HAVE THE TIME! According to a recent Gallup report, the average American watches 33 hours of TV per week and works 46.7 hours per week.
- We are quick to blame others for our failures or lack of growth. What I recommend is taking a good long look in the mirror and accepting responsibility for where you are. It has been said that you cannot control the circumstances in your life, only how you respond to them.
- We live in the age of instant information, which makes reading a book seem like a tedious task. Show a little self-motivation: pick up a book, sit down, and read.
- YES! You do have the money; you’re just spending it on things that will not give you any type of return, like your morning latte at Starbucks or some type of entertainment.
- You are free to blame anyone you like for your lack of personal or professional growth; however you are the only one who loses. Consider, maybe you’re not in leadership because you’re not growing? Just a thought.
While the above may sound harsh, that is not my intent. Over the course of my career I have personally made each of the above excuses at some point, until I was challenged by a couple of great mentors. Initially I became defensive and blew them off, but after I had some time to think, I decided to take a look at my current state. This was difficult and uncomfortable, but I realized they were absolutely right. I was making excuses, blaming others, and claiming that I was a victim of circumstances. This mindset was stopping me from reaching more of my potential. From that time on, the decision was made- the only person responsible for my life and growth was ME!
Who is taking responsibility for your life? Are you a victim of circumstances? Is “it” someone else’s fault? Do you really not have the time? Are you spending your money wisely? I can confidently make this statement: your earning potential is directly related to your personal growth and the application of that which you learn. So my challenge to you is to take the first step on your personal growth journey: pick an area in your life that you want to grow, and read a book written by someone who has achieved success in that area. You may be pleasantly surprised to see this one small step get you a bit closer to a better you.
– Written by Aaron Getty