Self-Improvement Books and Podcasts
Perhaps the most recognized and widely used method of improving personal development is through reading self-improvement books. There are thousands of quality books out there on the subject that have helped many people reach their goals. It is now easier than ever to access all of this material with tablets and E-readers.
Self-improvement books reinforce positive thoughts and teach lessons about making better life decisions. Consistently reading the books and hearing these messages will make you a much more positive person and improve the decisions and actions in your life. Personal development is all about expanding knowledge and reading is one of the easiest ways to achieve this. Treat every book as a key to unlock knowledge about yourself and you will continue to want to read new material. Here is a great list of some of the best self-improvement books that have been written; you would be surprised how many are available on your tablet!
Podcasts are excellent for people seeking advice on self-improvement who don’t enjoy reading or don’t have the time. They can be great when you are commuting to work, sitting at your desk or working out. Podcasts help balance a busy schedule with the need for self-improvement. Podcasts have become extremely popular over the past few years because they are accessible from anywhere on any device. Because I am constantly moving and don’t have as much time to read as I would like, podcasts have easily become my favorite method of accessing this type of information. There are thousands of podcasts available on many platforms that help with stress, lack of energy or motivation, depression, or anything else that is holding you back from reaching your goals. Here are a couple lists of the best personal development podcasts available right now:
Use the Technology Available
We all strive to become better versions of ourselves and evolve as people. However, you may feel like you don’t have the time to invest in personal development or don’t know where to start. Luckily with the technology available today, improving personal development and accessing self-improvement material has never been easier.
Stress Management Technology
Without proper stress management, it is impossible to grow as a person. Using these apps can reduce stress and anxiety which leads to better attention and awareness. Some stress management apps contain breathing exercises that help with anger management, mood stabilization, and reduce stress and anxiety. Using these tools can lead to making sure you are always performing at your absolute best and more enjoyable to be around. I haven’t had a chance to play around with too many of these apps but one that I have used and enjoyed was Headspace. As someone with no experience with meditation, this was a great app for me because it easily walked me through several different exercises. I could tell right away that my mood was improving and I will definitely use it again. I don’t consider myself someone with anger management or anxiety issues but if these tools are available and make you feel better about yourself and happier, why not take advantage of them.
Productivity apps can help all people become better workers and feel better about the way they work. There are time-tracking apps that help you find your work habits and patterns so you can find ways to improve them and become more productive. Some of my favorites are Toggl, Hours, and Qbserve. Several of these apps also include task management tools to keep to-do lists organized, share tasks with others, and juggle all the madness going on in your life. If you have trouble staying on task they also have services for time- tracking to make sure you are working efficiently, along with apps to keep you off sites that will distract you. We all have times when we could use some help making sure we are working as efficiently as possible and productivity apps can do that.
Take Notes/ Keep a Diary
Keeping a journal or diary helps you learn more about yourself and the way you work. We all have thoughts, challenges, and experiences that change the way we perform at work. Recording these thoughts and feelings helps identify trends in your behavior that are destructive, while also helping to formulate more productive ways of handling situations going forward. It can also lead to developing emotional intelligence, which allows you to relate to other people. Having a better understanding of yourself can lead to success, while also helping others around you. It also helps set, track and work towards short, medium and long-term goals.
Today there are many online journal options available for those who would rather type or use a tablet/ device than put their thoughts down on paper. There are tons of options out there to help with this, but my favorite is Day One. This app offers a ton of features; you can create journal entries in just one click, use templates to make journaling easier, insert photos and videos, password-protect your journal, and auto add metadata like location, weather, and motion activity. The app also has the best look and is the easiest to use in my opinion.
Set / Track Goals
Create and write down goals for your professional life and your life outside of the office. This will help prioritize your tasks. If you are working towards something you are passionate about, you become engaged, and inspired. This carries over into the workplace. Reward yourself when you are able to complete challenges and then set more!
Set Time To Exercise
When you are busy at work, fitness and exercise are often the first things to go. Overlooking this area of your life doesn’t just negatively impact your health, it affects your performance at work. The benefits from exercising include improved memory, better concentration, and a positive attitude. It also helps you stay present at work and make better decisions based on what is happening in the moment, rather than out of emotion or societal pressure.
Everyone knows exercise is an extremely important part of our lives. It keeps us healthy and keeps us alive longer. Today there are hundreds of fitness apps available, many free, for athletes of all shapes, sizes, abilities and most importantly schedules. Most of us are so busy it is hard to fit in time to work out. However, overlooking your fitness not only impacts your health but will also affects your performance at work. Exercising improves memory, concentration, self-esteem, and will help you keep a positive attitude. Many of the apps have quick exercises designed for people with a tight schedule and limited time to work out. Go find the app that works best for your ideal workout and schedule.
Here are some of my favorites:
Get More Sleep
Doctors have linked getting a healthy amount of sleep to increased creativity, increased muscle mass, loss of fat, improved memory and attention, decreased risk of depression, lowered stress and even a longer life span. Using stimulants like caffeine or energy drinks is only a short-term solution and will lead to long term health issues.
Travel When Possible
If you can manage the time, traveling can lead to great personal development. That being said, it doesn’t have to be a long trip or an expensive one, sometimes it’s the opposite type of trip that is the most rewarding. If you stay in one place you can lose touch with the world around you. Traveling improves your communication skills, inspires creativity, and gives you an appreciation for everything in your life and around you. It often times pushes you outside your comfort zone which always leads to self- discovery. Get out there and see the world!
I hope these tips help you to reach your personal development goals this spring. If you have any feedback or any other personal development suggestions please share!