Personal growth refers to the development process, both consciously and unconsciously of a person that involves all areas of life including intellectual, emotional, spiritual, moral, physical and economic development among others (Pavlina, 2008). Conscious process is where one actively works towards growth and development while unconscious process involves natural evolution by the virtue of living. Throughout this course, I noticed a lot of development in me that varied from moral, intellectual, emotional and even physical growth.
At the start of the semester, I wrote down my personal and professional visions to guide me through the semester. The aim of constructing that vision statement was to help me be focus and keep me on track so that I did not deviate from my course. My vision was to gain intellect at the end of the course and be more intelligent. I hoped to widen my scope of thinking and relating with people both personally and professionally. In relation to this I planned to make and maintain new friends who would in turn inspire me towards personal growth. I also expected to acquire a more responsible behavior and reason independently without being influenced by my friends. In short, I hoped to be more mature and behave like an adult.
The road towards my personal growth started with realization and acknowledgement of the fact that I needed to learn. I reflected on my life and reviewed my experiences in the past. My growth depended on my ability to learn from my previous experiences and not just from reviewing them. I identified the areas I needed to improve in my life and gradually worked through them with the help of my friends and tutor. This was not easy as I came across many challenges in the process. One of them was my tendency to get defensive all the time. Being defensive is not productive at all because it wastes your energy which would otherwise be useful in restoring calm and balance (Robbins & Roland, 1987). Calm and balance enables one to implement changes in his or her life.
Resilience means the ability to ‘bounce back’ or recover from misfortune or change. At the start of the semester I seemed to dwell on the negative events in my life. I would brood on them for months thinking of how unlucky I was. Now, I know that concentrating on the challenges in my life only pulls me down. I am capable of using the challenges as a stepping stone towards my success and positive growth. I now understand that I hold the key to attaining authentic happiness that will give me deep satisfaction. I have the potential of improving even more, a fact that I plan to put into action in order to learn more about love and winning. This course has transformed my understanding and definitions of many things. Winning, at the beginning of the semester, to me meant being victorious at the end of a task or a competition. My understanding of winning now is the ability to try out a task, even without emerging victorious. My capacity to love has expanded from having affection for my kinsmen to having passion for myself, my friends, my work and life in general. This new definition will hopefully help others who view life in a narrow perspective like I did. To determine my potential in the future, I plan to interact with intelligent and successful people who will challenge me, and help improve my resilience and general personal and professional growth.