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Self-Development is Not A Luxury - Here's How To Afford It

Aug 21, 2007
Many of you know that I teach business classes at the University of Phoenix and I love being a learning leader. Whether they earn a Bachelors or Master degree, the students accomplishment is quite valuable in predicting their future success.

However, it has been said that the half-life of what they learn is three years. In other words, 50% of what a person learns in college is no longer useful after three years. Scary thought!

So, if you're not doing something to increase your knowledge base, you'll soon be left behind in what could be called the dark ages. Some people believe they are too busy to even consider engaging in self-development. They put in 10 or 11 hours each day at work, cook and eat dinner, watch some TV, and go to sleep; and repeat that cycle day after day for years.

They firmly believe there is simply no time to spend in activities that could be called self-development. Maintain that belief and that routine, and sooner or later you will be in trouble. Here are a few ideas on how to engage in self-development without much sacrifice:

- Buy and play developmental / educational CDs while getting ready for work.

- Listen to CDs in your car (never listen to the radio).

- Read a book during your lunch period or at breaks.

- Set a goal to read 30 minutes each day on a subject you choose and do it.

- Assess your skills, identify a skill to develop, and practice that skill each day until mastered.

- Ask people for recommended books and articles in a subject you wish to study.

- Seek and attend developmental seminars, workshops, and lectures.

- Invest in your own development first and then ask your employer to invest.

- Seek feedback and make changes to grow and develop.

- Ask your wife, husband, or significant other how you can improve, listen, and act.

- Engage a mentor in your organization.

- Hire a coach.

- Enroll in an online college class (I did two months ago).

Self-Development is not a luxury. Today it is an imperative. If you don't prepare for the changes that are coming, you will find yourself being left behind.

Only through daily self-development activities will you be able to cope with change and create the future you dream of. Don't put it off. Decide, commit, and engage in conscious self-development today and every day!
About the Author
Joe Farcht is the founder and president of Leadership Advantage, Inc. His purpose for living is to develop and coach leaders, executives, managers, and supervisors to new levels of performance and success in their work and life. He is the author of the book Building Personal Leadership: Inspirational Tools & Techniques for Work & Life. Learn more at Leadership Advantage, Inc.. Please contact Joe at joefarcht@cox.net or at 602 996-1802.
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