No matter what day it is or where I am, there is one practice I will never ever sacrifice: Personal Development.
Personal development has proven to be so important that my life today is completely different from my life a few years ago, even a few months ago, as a result of my daily practice.
Just three short months ago I took a ten-day trip to my hometown of Detroit, to visit my family and friends. It was great to see everyone, but it was also a very emotional trip. Visiting my home made me question everything I had created in my new home in Washington over the past year. At the end of the trip when it was time to fly back to Seattle, I met a lot of resistance. I did not want to go back.
I had created the story in my head that I wanted to move back to Michigan, that I wanted everything to be just as it was before the move. Obviously, we couldn’t just pack up and move back on a whim, it takes time, energy and well, a new job for my husband!
So I reluctantly flew back to Seattle, and to be completely honest, I cried the entire flight back.
When I arrived I was so sad, confused and depressed. I remained in this state for several weeks following, until the feelings finally began to subside on their own. It was a miserable few weeks, and I had convinced myself I had to move back to Michigan, that I was done with my adventure. I did it, now it’s time to go back to where everything feels normal and comfortable.
Regardless of how I was feeling, I pressed on each day with my personal development. By tapping into my inner being, by peeling away at yet more layers of the onion, I was able to finally get to the point of not only acceptance of where I was, but comfort and excitement.
Fast forward to today, I just returned from a second trip back to Michigan. I saw my friends and family, had a beautiful Thanksgiving, and even watched my Dad marry someone who is not my Mom (talk about emotional!).
As I packed up my luggage to come back to Seattle, yes I was sad. I didn’t want to leave my people. I would miss them dearly, and I really didn’t know when I would see them again. I was concerned that I would feel depressed again for weeks, and I really didn't want to feel this way again.
To my surprise, as my husband and I boarded the plane, I couldn’t have been happier to get back to my little home in Washington. When we landed at Seattle-Tacoma Airport it was like a breath of fresh air and I was so relieved to be back “home.”
Just three short months ago, this same experience was very tough for me. How can this be possible?
As I said before, personal development is something I will never ever sacrifice. I attribute my new feelings to just this. Here are the four simple activities I do each day that have had a huge impact on my life…
1) Yoga. Hands down, this is my number one recommendation for anyone seeking personal and spiritual healing. I have devoted one hour of my life each day to my yoga practice, and it has been transformational. I recommend finding a studio near you that you totally vibe with, a place where the teachers are passionate healers. This would be a great place to start, although if you aren’t vibing with a studio, an at-home practice is the next best thing.
2) Reading. Each morning I read at least ten pages in a great personal development book. I try and read at least one new book per month. Reading has truly changed my life, and I will always and forever continue to expand my heart and my mind with some amazing books!
3) Journaling. I used to think writing in a journal was silly. I wondered what the heck this writing biz was all about. But now, I totally get it. Each morning I take just 3-5 minutes to write in my journal. I first write how I’m feeling, and follow it up with what I’m grateful for. Get the crap out, bring the positive vibes in so to speak.
4) Meditation. I take 10 minutes per day to sit in silence and focus on my breath. I used to be so resistant to meditation, because I couldn’t slow down my thinking. My mind would go and go and go, to the point of driving me bonkers! But with the persistence and daily practice, meditation became easier and easier. Tapping into my inner being has been absolutely pivotal in my personal development.
So that’s my formula for personal development success. These four, super simple daily tasks have utterly transformed my life, and I believe they can help you too. I mean, they have helped me so much that I don’t even feel like packing up and moving back to Michigan! I find that pretty amazing :)
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