Turn Learning into Actual Improvement
The real measure around whether all the effort, time and resources, you are putting into trying to improve yourself, is working and making real and tangible differences in your life, is easily measured in the improved or better results you are getting to enjoy as a result of all your efforts. Remember you attract success by the person you become, as you become more, you most certainly attract more. If you are investing a vast amount of time, energy and resources into your self-development and you are feeling frustrated, as you seem to just remain trapped in the same place, then you may very well be spinning your wheels, covering a mass of material and learning very little. The most important thing about personal development is not to haphazardly cover as much material as possible. Just like any goal or outcome you are attempting to achieve, you must have clarity of purpose and a definite plan to achieve the outcome you desire.
There are people that attend every seminar possible, they read all the books and listen to audio recordings at every turn, yet they never seem to see improved results in their lives. This is simply because they are only circulating a vast amount of knowledge through their heads and never applying or using any of it. If success was just about knowledge or information, everyone with an internet connection, would be able to have thin thighs in 30 days, earn millions of dollars, spending only two hours a day on the internet or build any success they wanted after paying only three instalments of only $ 39.95. As you know the reality is quite different, sustainable success is never about knowledge. It is about finding the right knowledge and then turning that newfound knowledge into skill, application and new success habits.
There is a massive difference between knowing everything and knowing what you should do and actually taking inspired action, applying the right knowledge and doing what you know. The difference is found in the way that you turn all the information or knowledge into meaningful learning and improvement. Learning will only equal better earning, when you have a vision or reason for undertaking the seminar, reading the book or listening to the audio program. This clarity of purpose and focus allows you to gain real and lasting benefit from your investment into self-improvement. The reason you invest time, energy and resources into improving, is to allow you to get better results. To help you to get better results from all your self-improvement activities, I offer you a summary of my method below.
1) Explore your goals and choose an area that needs improving (e.g. Improve presentation skills)
2) This is the focus of your self-improvement efforts for the next 90 days.
3) Buy 3 books, 5 Audio books and sign up to do at min one seminar, related to your area of focus (e.g. improve presentation skills)
4) Set aside 30 minutes – 1 hour a day to consume the three books over the next 90 days.
5) Read, re-read, underline, highlight, put notes in margins and at the end of chapters, until you have absorbed and understood the book, cover to cover.
6) Extract the three most important concepts from the book.
7) Build a plan to include at least one of these concepts into your daily routines over the next 90 days. They must be included into your weekly and daily planning and action lists.
8) Review your progress and see how well you are integrating these into your life, daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly.
9) Listen to only those five audio books over those same 90 days. I find I get the most benefit from each program, if I listen to each audio book at least 5 times before proceeding to the next one.
10) Extract the three best ideas from each audio program. Commit to introduce the most valuable concept into your routine. It must be added into your weekly planning schedule and actioned daily.
11) When you attend the seminar, I listen intently, making notes only when you hear something new or valuable. Record the proceedings on a recording pen and listen to this in your car over and over again.
12) Once again extract the three most useful ideas and introduce these into your schedule.
My experience has shown me that although I am reading three books, listening to five audio books and attending a seminar, in the field of my focused area of growth, every 90 days. There always seems to be a common theme that emerges from all of these and I manage to find only about three new ideas to implement and introduce into my life.
The secret to make this work for you is to:
- Choose one area to focus on every 90 days
- Choose the best three ideas from all the material and implement these into your schedule. Use willpower to take action and introduce them into your life, until they become part of your new habit set.
- Measure and review your progress daily, weekly and monthly and ensure that you are actually applying the new ideas in your life.
- Constantly strive to stay focused on only one area at a time and commit to keep improving.