As we go about our lives, circumstances will arise that force us to learn or grow in some way. Perhaps losing a loved one changes your attitude towards your beliefs, or how you go about making the most of every day. Maybe going to university gives you a more mature outlook on life — any number of life situations can lead you to a reassessment of what’s important to you.
So as we go through life, we almost always grow and learn. However, once we have reached a comfort zone, we might then start to think twice before we go outside of it. The comfort zone is the place where everything is familiar, such as the routines we carry out, the things we do, and the way we go about doing them. No matter where you are in life, at any time it is possible to become very content in your comfort zone and to stay there. And that’s okay — for a time.
However, when we are operating exclusively within our comfort zone, we can become a bit complacent about life. We are comfortable, everything around us is familiar, and while it is possible to stay in his space for extended periods of time, real growth can only occur when we go outside of our comfort zone.
Stretching and challenging ourselves promotes learning, as well as new brain pathways and neurones. Engaging in activities that demand more of you as a person enables you to grow, and to become more complete.
For instance, learning a new language, learning a new skill, increasing your knowledge on a particular topic or area, or working on your issues to let go of behaviours or beliefs that no longer serve you, can help to promote personal growth. You can start to move onwards and upwards.
If your life is not how you’d like it to be, it may be helpful to identify ways in which you can challenge or extend yourself, and in this way you will find your life becoming closer to the one that you visualise for yourself.
Remember, however, that you can only change yourself, you can’t change others. So focus on exploring what it is that you can change within yourself — in time, this may also mean that changes in your world around you follow. If you are struggling to identify areas in which you want to change, or strategies to help you achieve change, you might find that a counsellor, psychologist, or NLP practitioner to be helpful in this regard.
While growth is always possible as a consequence of the events life throws at us, it is also entirely possible to boost and encourage personal growth through consciously engaging in learning situations, undertaking courses, or becoming involved in other activities that will stretch and challenge you. If you do this at least once per year, then you are well on your way to more personal growth.