The Hidden Power of Proactive Personal Growth

by Michael Simmons on Mar 22, 2013

Proactive personal growth is extremely undervalued. If anything, it is stigmatized, as shown by its almost full exclusion from the education system (including entrepreneurship education) and its absence from people’s lives.

I believe that aligning our lives around personal growth has the most dramatic impact on our lives and the world. What we heal in ourselves, we heal in the world.

While the benefits of most activities and achievements taper off, the benefits of personal growth compound.

Personal growth is leverage. When we change something at the core of our being, everything in every part of our life transforms. When we change the context, the meaning of the content changes.

We often focus on creating results by focusing on symptoms rather than causes. We take the time to pick out the characteristics our ideal life partner, but we don’t do the work necessary to be a person who that individual would be attracted to. We endeavor to end violence, but don’t see the violence is inside of us.

We are magnets. The strongest attractor is not what we’ve accomplished, but who we are. What we accomplish is a result of who we are.

Sometimes we spend our whole life trying to accomplish goals, which, if we had spent more time on personal growth, we would not have even pursued. Sometimes we build up a reputation and a network in a profession, which, with more introspection, we would not have begun.

Many times we get caught in the short-term, urgent demands of daily living. But, the best time to start investing in ourselves is always now.

Like other spheres of life, when it comes to our character, reaching our potential doesn’t just happen. It requires time, effort, support, faith, courage and intention.


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I'm the co-founder of Empact, one of the leading entrepreneurship education organizations in the world. I'm obsessed with understanding how we all can lead meaningful lives that have a positive social impact. I love probing into the truth of how we experience life. I believe that challenges are what make us grow the most, and I openly share my experiences. Continue reading…