Sunday, June 2, 2013

New Blog

Why a blog that focuses on personal growth and development?

Personal development for growth and change was relatively unknown to me for a long time. I say "relatively" because I had heard a little about what were usually called "motivational" books and speakers. Usually, they were referred to derisively. The people of my parent's generation, at least the ones I knew, looked upon the personal development industry (or whatever it was called back then) as being less than worthy of respect. Meaningless fluff would be a kind description of how they tended to view it. In part, this was because of people they knew who had taken some personal development course(s) and tried to use what they had learned for manipulation rather than for real personal growth. Graduates of Dale Carnegie courses had the reputation of being particularly prone to such manipulation.

I believe another big factor in the view these people had of personal development was that most of them were Depression era folks. So, for them, hard work was essential to being able to eat, but they saw no way of increasing the value of the work they did. Minus the Depression era work ethic, this view remains to this day. Most people see no way of increasing the value of the work they do or of increasing their value.

Finally, much of personal development focuses on financial issues and my parents and many of their contemporaries had a tendency to look at the financially successful with some suspicion. There was this often unspoken but ever present belief that someone who had earned a significant amount of money must be either dishonest or "lucky". So, anything that suggested it could help a person become financially successful was immediately suspect. This view, too, remains largely present up to right now.

There were two big factors that brought me face to face with the reality of personal development. The first was my time as a military officer. The Navy places a big emphasis on leadership development. While many, perhaps most, of the graduates of military leadership training courses see only techniques to be used for career advancement, those courses still provide exposure to the idea of constant individual growth. So, you could say I was sort of set up for what followed. The second factor was my initial foray into small business. I was fortunate to be involved with people who were not only successful in multiple areas of their lives, but who were more than willing to give credit for such success to personal development. Each and every one of them, in his or her own way, said my biggest and hardest work as a business owner would be the work I did on myself. Had it not been for my military experience and the evidence of the effectiveness of personal development I saw right in front of me, it would have been very difficult to convince me of its worth. I will be forever grateful to the people who would not stop urging me to read, learn and become more. They changed my life.

So, why the blog? Because I've seen the change it makes in others. Because I know the change it has made in me and my life. Because I know what life is like when you're convinced neither you nor your circumstances can or will ever change. And because I don't want to see other people live out their lives that way or wait until they are in their forties to realize they can change.

Why the title? Because if you want to change your life you must, first of all, change the way you think. If you will change your mind you will change your life. When I began to change the way I thought, my life began to change. Even if I could go back to the old way of thinking, I wouldn't. My life has changed too much. I even adopted the concept to my hypnosis and coaching practice. "Change your mind...change your life" is more than a slogan. It's the fundamental belief with which I approach every client as I get to help them reach their goals.

Please, read along over time. Change your mind...change your life.

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