A very important aspect to growth and change in life is the pursuit of self-improvement. To be successful in life – business dealings, relationships, spiritual matters and more – we must be determined to better ourselves, on purpose.
My husband and I first got involved in purposeful personal development many years ago when a mentor introduced us to a wonderful vision and goal setting program and the concept of dream boards. It was truly life changing and we have been made stronger, wiser and more confident as we’ve continued our walk of continual growth and improvement.
Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many advisers bring success.
Proverb 15:22 (NLT)
We really took the experts seriously when they recommended becoming determined enough to invest in ourselves – with time and money. Over the years we have attended multitudes of workshops, seminars, conference calls and webinars. We’ve listened to the CDs and watched umpteen DVDs of the pros. We’ve participated in several mastermind groups – virtual and in person. We’ve bought and read so many spiritual and secular self-improvement books we seriously could open our own bookstore or lending library! All of this came at a price – literally thousands of dollars and mega-hours of time and a lot of travel.
While all of this is terrific and I wouldn’t change a thing, I have to warn you that you can reach a point of saturation – a state of “analysis paralysis”. It’s one thing to learn, explore and absorb all the “experts” ideas, plans, inspiration and motivation. It’s another thing to make your own plan and finally take action. It’s not enough to just hear it; you have to at some point do it.
But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. James 1:22 (NLT)
There comes a time when any more thinking and analyzing becomes counter-productive and you must just start to move forward. You can analyze so much that no decision is made.
A good friend of mine, also named Tina, and I have walked this self-improvement walk together. We actually met in a virtual mastermind group and became fast friends. She and I had an aha-moment of our own a few years ago. We hesitantly and self-consciously laughed when we came to the realization that we had to stop – stop buying the books, stop paying for the programs, stop purchasing the latest “how-to” manual. We had reached a point of information overload and it was time to stop learning, stop taking in more information. It was time to start acting – truly taking action – on the stuff we had already learned, gleaned and amassed. We literally challenged each other not to buy one more book or program!
If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.
Bruce Lee (1930-1973) Chinese American martial artist, actor, philosopher
If you are a seasoned Christian, you already know the basics. It’s time to take action! As I said, it is good to seek godly counsel, but the Holy Spirit is your best friend, your guide and your ultimate counselor.
But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you, so you don’t need anyone to teach you what is true. For the Spirit teaches you everything you need to know, and what he teaches is true – it is not a lie.
1 John 2:27 (NLT)
Take time to review all you already know and ask the Holy Spirit to show you the next action step you need to take – now!
Keep the faith!