Personal Development ~ It’s An Attitude Thing!

I discovered the philosophy of Personal Development at the age of 18.  I was working at a Ford Main Dealer in an administrative role when I was given the opportunity to train in sales.

I attended a residential Sales Training Course at Ford’s Training Centre in the UK and it was while I was on that course that I started to realise how much I loved learning new skills and how important it was for me to perform at my best.  Of course, this may well have been fueled by the fact that, once I started working in sales, I also realised that I was very competitive.  I loved winning competitions, earning bonuses and breaking sales records.  And I’ve done an awful lot of that in my time.

Me skiingIt was years later when I started race training – skiing competitively with my son, Alex.  Our chosen field was slalom racing – going as fast as possible around poles, predominantly on dry slopes, as we don’t get too much snow on the south coast of England.

The race training reminded me of how competitive I was.  Unfortunately, when I started I really wasn’t very good at what you might call ‘Target Skiing’.

On the mountain when you’re skiing for pleasure you tend to turn fairly casually.  All of a sudden, when I had to turn around the poles – when I had to ski to a target, I started to realise how poor my skiing was.  Although, in my defense, I’d only been a few times at that point.

There was nothing else for it.  I started attending all three of the weekly race training sessions that the Race Club ran, every week.  I rarely missed a training session.

I wanted to be better.  I wanted to win – or, at least, be competitive with the other adults that were competing.  And Alex was just the same.

It was at this time that I was reminded that, as fast as you improve, it just makes you realise that there’s a whole lot more to learn.  In Passionate About Personal Developmentfact, it reminded me that you never stop learning and never stop improving – if that’s what you choose to do.  And it is a choice that we all make, whatever activity we’re involved in.

It reminded me that I was Passionate about Personal Development.

After a few years, my son and I both decided to train as Ski Instructors, partially, because Alex much preferred the idea of working as a Ski Instructor at the Ski Centre rather than stacking shelves at a Supermarket, but also because I truly believe that you never have complete mastery over any skill until you can teach that skill to others.

When I started teaching people to ski I was blown away at the dramatic, positive impact that going back to basics and using a snow plough had on my own skiing ability – at every level.  When you teach people a skill you have to think about it in a very different way in comparison to when you simply perform that skill for yourself and that thinking process sharpens your own skills in immeasurable ways.

Ski Instructor at workI taught hundreds of people to ski over the next few years and it became very evident that there were two kinds of people that came for lessons.  The first type, the majority, simply wanted to get to grips with the basics so that they could go on holiday and get around the mountain in some fashion.  They’d come for a few lessons and then you’d never see them again.

And then there were the people that had a thirst to improve their skills and get better, the minority that embraced an ethos of personal development.  At least, in their skiing!  These people never reached a point where they were satisfied with their performance.

Not everyone has a desire to improve their ability in everything they do.  Some people are selective as to which areas they apply their personal development to.  But this desire to improve is a choice that they make.  It’s an attitude that they have to seek continuous improvement.

The Japanese call this process of continuous improvement ‘Kaizen’ and Tony Robbins coined the acronym CANI – Constant and Never-ending Improvement.

The Key to successIf you want to excel at what you do, if you want to make more money and achieve more success in your chosen field or fields then it’s essential that you adopt this CANI attitude.  And when you do, you’ll start to realise how little competition there really is at the top echelons of any endeavour because the majority of people will reach a point of satisfaction and then stop learning.  Understanding this is the Key to achieving anything you want.

I’m Steve Bimpson.  I’m Passionate about Personal Development and I’m a lifelong learner.  How about you?

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Have a great day,

Steve Bimpson

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