A Beginner’s Guide To Personal Development

By Shane Krider

April 24, 2017   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man

what is personal development

What is personal development? How can it change your life?

Personal development can be difficult to explain to someone who hasn’t started his journey yet. Conversations around this topic can often create more confusion than clarity.

To help you figure out exactly what it means, here are the basic concepts of personal development you need to know about.

Sharpening the saw

In Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he describes a concept that is an excellent first stop for all personal development practices. It’s called sharpening the saw.

The premise is based on this analogy:

If you’re sawing through a log and never stop to sharpen your blade, it’ll likely be an arduous task that will ultimately lead to failure. But, if you take the time to sharpen your blade, you’ll get through the process quicker and with less effort. Although it may take you away from your goal momentarily, it’s more likely to give you a successful result.

In today’s fast-paced lifestyle, it’s easy to feel like you don’t have enough time to sharpen your saw. Personal development highlights the importance of tuning yourself up mentally, and how that can help you achieve your goals faster.

Paradigm Shift

new perspective

A paradigm shift occurs when you view a piece of information from a totally new perspective that flips your entire view of it.

Here is my personal experience:

I never invested in self-education, which is essentially ‘sharpening my saw’ from point one. I never really learned how the mind works, and how I could utilize it to become successful.

A few life events occurred that made me question everything. I was adamant that a current mechanic and high school drop out would not become successful. I knew it was possible to learn skills but believed it wouldn’t work for me because I was unlucky. It’s like the more I planned, the more horribly it all went awry.

From that point, I realized that I needed a big paradigm shift to open my mind to possibilities. I needed to change the way I look at life and how I can make things work in my favor.

A year after this shift, I was a self-made millionaire.

That is personal development. It’s what can change your mind and point of view about reality. It is what can convince you that if you just believe, you can achieve absolutely anything you desire.

See Also: 5 Women Entrepreneurs Who Failed Before Becoming Millionaires


I learned about the concept of Psycho-Cybernetics from Maxwell Maltz, an internationally renowned Plastic Surgeon who performs disfigurement surgery and documents his follow-ups. He found out that majority of post-surgery patients walk around as if they still have their disfigurements and all the internal baggage they come with.

Like those patients, we generally build our self-images through negative life experiences and act as if they are the truth.

So, if your self-image involves being blue-collar worker earning $36K a year, that’s pretty much what you’ll aspire for. That idea can greatly limit your potential.

On Starting With Your Personal Development

personal development

What is personal development?

In essence, it highlights the power of self-affirmation and mental visualization and how these things can connect your mind and body. Acknowledging the importance of your inner thoughts about yourself is an essential step in every personal development journey.

To change your life, you must change how you think of yourself. Once you become successful with that, your life will change to match your perception.

These principles are an excellent start to understanding what personal development is. Once you start seeing life through these concepts, you’ll be able to peel off the negative layers of your inner self-image.

By instinct, you’ll start changing your perspectives and seek out people with a similar mindset. You’ll start to realize that you have the willpower you thought you didn’t have before. You’ll have emotional resilience and confidence in making decisions.

Personal development starts with the premise that you are perfect. It’s understanding that, with your mind and body, you have the power to achieve anything you desire.

We are all born to prosper. Once you find the courage to start, that’s exactly your cue to start your journey.

See Also: 3 Fundamental Personal Development Steps You Need to Take


Shane Krider

Shane Krider is an entrepreneur, personal development and leadership coach. After adopting personal development practises in his own life and achieving some amazing results, including creating a $170million business, Shane now shares his extensive knowledge to help transform people's lives on his popular podcast 'Shane Krider's Mind Power' found on iTunes, Spreaker and TuneIn. Or at http://www.BornToProsper.com

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