Personal growth is an absolute requirement for Leaders. We cannot stand still. We must continually pursue personal growth in order to increase our capacity to lead.
Growth does not happen automatically. Time and experience do not necessarily equate to growth. If we want to grow, we must be very intentional about the pursuit.
It has been said that you cannot predict the future, but to some extent you can control your future by controlling what you do today and every day. You must be purposeful and you must be consistent.
Growth compounds with consistency. Even small steps forward, if done on a consistent basis, will add up to large growth over time. The key is your daily routine. What are you doing to grow every day?
I have found that Daily Growth Appointments provide me with an excellent framework for consistent growth. Even though I am not perfect in my execution, this daily routine has paid big dividends. Some days and weeks are better than others in terms of visible progress. The important thing is to engage the process every single day because, while it may not look like progress is being made, growth is occurring beneath the surface.
My Daily Growth Appointments
Work Out 5:00-6:00 am
During this time, I weight train or do a cardio workout. It is a great way to start the day and clear the mind.
Pray/Reflect/Plan/Write 6:00-6:30 am
During this time, I do the following with respect to my top goals and priorities, which will change over time as goals are achieved.
- Express gratitude
- Seek wisdom
- Ask myself
- “What is going well?”
- “What is not going well?”
- “What activities should I do more frequently?”
- “What activities should I do less frequently or eliminate?”
- “What should I do differently?”
- “What else should I be doing?”
- Write down what I have learned.
Possibility Thinking 6:30-6:45 am
Possibility Thinking is the process of allowing your mind to work on a large goal and arrive at the possibilities related to accomplishing that goal.
As an example, if you have a goal to double your income this year, spend fifteen minutes each day thinking into all the possible ways of doubling your income. Sit quietly with a pad of paper and a pen and as you think, write down every idea that comes into your mind. Don’t pass judgment, just write. Do this every day for 90 days. If you miss a day, start over at day one.
At the end of the 90 days, review what you have written. You will be equipped with a greater awareness of how to accomplish this large goal. Use this new awareness and the ideas that you have written to develop a plan. Input the items of this plan into your Pray/Reflect/Plan/Write process.
Read and Learn Something New 6:45–7:15 am
During this time, I read with the mission of learning something new. It may be a new book on a personal growth or Leadership topic, or I may reread all or part of books that I have read previously, knowing that this time I will see new things.
Evening Pray/Reflect/Plan/Write 9:45–10:00 pm
It is helpful to pray, reflect, plan, and write in the evening while the events of the day are still fresh in my mind. This time consists of the same elements as the morning reflection time but is usually shorter. This helps me to wind down and sets me up to have a productive Pray/Reflect/Plan/Write appointment the following morning.
I encourage you to create your own Daily Growth Appointments. You can use the plan that I have outlined here and modify it to fit your needs, or you can create something completely different. The important thing is to define your Daily Growth Appointments, get them into your calendar, and keep them every day.