The Great Myth About And The Long Held Misconceptions Surrounding Self Improvement and Personal Development
By Chuck Danes
The Great Myth About And The Misconceptions Surrounding Self Improvement and Personal Development
It ALL Begins With "Awareness"
By Chuck Danes
Although the terms self improvement and personal development are widely utilized terms in today's age, have you ever considered the fact that they aren't really necessary at all and in reality only serve as a deterrent which can keep you in limbo with regard to creating your most desired and sought after outcomes?
If you're like the mass majority who have jumped on the personal empowerment and self improvement bandwagon, chances are you haven't.
While most "perceive" these to be necessary to advance in life from my perspective they're NOT necessary at all!! In fact, from my perspective those terms in and of themselves are flawed and can only slow down the attainment of "desired" outcomes.
Before we get into how and why I believe this is true let's look at some self improvement / personal development market stats…
According to a recent report released by Marketdata Enterprises, Inc., a leading independent market research publisher, the Self Improvement / Personal Development Market in 2006 in the U.S alone was worth $9.6 Billion dollars per year with a projected increase expected of 11.4% annual growth through 2010, to a value of $13.9 billion.
In a similar study in 2000 the self improvement industry was a 5.7 billion dollar industry increasing to 8.5 billion by 2004 in the U.S.
Another study shows that the worldwide market for "self improvement / personal development" products and services is a whopping 64 billion dollars per year!!!
In today's world it has become evident that escalating numbers of individuals are seeking answers and/or solutions through some form of "self improvement" or "personal development" model. In fact a rapidly expanding multi-billion dollar industry has been created around and is RAPIDLY expanding due to the fact that there are many today who are attempting to improve or develop some aspect of themselves.
If you type self improvement into Google's search bar it returns 69,100,000 possibilities under the heading of self improvement and a staggering 596,000,000 for personal development, offering an almost overwhelming amount of choices for an individual to improve or develop themselves.
While it might be perceived that ones desire to improve self is a "good" or commendable thing, as you'll soon discover, in reality, or at least "my reality", self improvement or personal development is merely misdirected energy or misguided intention that cannot NOW or EVER will produce significant or sustainable results.
Self improvement and personal development are quite broad labels which encompass numerous aspects of life. For the sake of this article we'll be focusing on an aspect of self improvement / personal development, however misdirected I might believe it to be, that gets to the root of what most are searching for, most without "being aware" of it, which pertains to improving EVERY area of an individuals quality of life whether physically, financially, relationally, emotionally, and/or spiritually.
While a desire and an intent to improve ones conditions or outcomes in life is commendable, when considering the subjects and the meanings of self improvement and personal development themselves, I have come to believe that the reason that the self improvement / personal development market is broadening yet undesirable events, conditions and circumstances "appear" to be increasing around the world is because the focus of the majority as well as the industry is flawed and being placed on improving self rather than placing that focus on and becoming "aware" of the "true source" from where the desired or undesired outcomes come from.
In other words the world is attempting to fix something that is NOT broken. Namely….themselves.
No more than can you expect to resolve an issue by using the same form of thinking that created it, can you hope to fix something that isn't flawed or broken.
Confused? Here's an analogy that may clear it up…
If you're lawnmower started and operated just as it was intended to do and cut the grass just the way in which it was designed would you call a mechanic to "fix it" or attempt to somehow improve or develop it yourself? Of course not!!
Let's look at it in a different way. You just return home from the local "Home Improvement" store with your brand new shiny lawnmower, unload it and are ready to fire that baby up for the first time, but the clerk at the home improvement store forgot to show you the hidden switch that was necessary to flip before it would start. You search for the instructions and find they are missing. You have a brand spanking new "bad boy" lawnmower that has gone through an intensive quality control process and it works perfectly. Does it need to be improved or developed? NOOOOOOOOO!!!! But you DO need to become "aware" of the switch to flip before it will operate and do what it is that you want it to do.
The lawnmowers perfect. You only lack the awareness or the "consciousness" at this point to make it operate properly, and in the way that you "desire" correct?
You wouldn't attempt to fix a lawnmower that already operates perfectly….So why would you attempt to improve or fix yourself?
Because you lack the awareness of who and what you already are.
Although you may be a bit confused by that analogy, It's only because you are not yet currently aware of your "perfection", but the remainder of this discussion will hopefully clear up any fog there might be.
Here's a little deeper look from my perspective concerning both self improvement AND personal development as it relates to you….
To begin experiencing what those who indulge in self improvement / personal development are attempting to improve or resolve in their lives, there is a necessary paradigm shift that needs to be made with regard to the terms self improvement / personal development as a whole in order to effectively improve whatever it is that those who utilize self improvement resources of various types are attempting to improve.
Where the misconception lies is that just as in the example with the lawnmower above, there is no need to improve self but rather understand that what people are attempting to do by engaging in self improvement / personal development courses, seminars and exercises is in reality, finding the hidden switch, the means in which to improve the quality of their lives in various areas. It's the various events, conditions and circumstances in life that the masses are attempting to improve and doing so through placing focus on and attempting to improve something that is already perfect in every way is a futile attempt to do so.
Self Improvement or Personal Development implies that you are in some way flawed…that you need fixing. No more than the brand new shiny lawnmower above is flawed, YOU are certainly not flawed. In fact as ancient spiritual texts as well as some of the most enlightened spiritual teachers in the history of the world have taught for thousands of years, "You were created in the image and likeness of the Creator or Source ", whatever you may perceive that to be.
As such, you are perfect just the way you are. There is nothing about self to improve!!! You CANNOT improve upon what is already perfect.
Can the I AM of EVERYTHING require improvement. Absolutely NOT. The Source, the "True Cause" of ALL effects is already and always has been perfect in EVERY way. The plan created and put into place by the Source is also absolutely perfect in EVERY way. Even modern day scientific discoveries have validated that there is NEVER an atom out of place EVER!! The only thing that is flawed is individual perception based on what is in most cases being "unconsciously" created by the mass majority and which provides them with a desire to improve some event, condition or circumstance in their lives and NOT being "aware" that it is them who are creating it or understanding the plan which makes it unfold perfectly 100% of the time.
In case you are not already "aware", recent scientific discoveries have proven that the more than seven trillion cells which make up your body are replaced every few years with brand new cells creating a brand new and "perfect" you.
If that isn't enough to convince you that the plan is perfect, take a deeper and more analytical look at the process of creation in nature.
If that doesn't convince you, one of 2 possibilities exist. The first is that you may need to dig a little deeper and develop the awareness or the second is that if you don't think it will make any difference, you may not be ready for this article. (BIG smile here)
Whatever you are currently experiencing in your life is being created and unfolding "perfectly" and whether you are currently "aware" of it or not YOU are creating it. You DON'T need to be "Improved" or "developed" but it is your "process" of creating or your "awareness" of what it is that you are creating and how that does. That process is improved by becoming "Aware" of your perfection, your creative power and adjusting it consciously to begin creating and experiencing "Desired" results.
It's not the self improvement junkies that need improvement but only their paradigms, their way of thinking, more specifically the quality of that thinking and an enhanced awareness concerning not only themselves but how it is that they are bringing the desired as well as the undesirable experiences into their life experience.
You can't improve upon what is already perfect. In fact it's absolutely impossible. What needs to be focused on is Self Awareness. By establishing the correct awareness of who and what you "truly" are combined with the fact that an unwavering, immutable, and ABSOLUTELY PERFECT plan has existed since the beginning of time itself, and consciously utilizing your newfound awareness based on what you discover regarding that reality, the improvement that is sought in life, whether in the area of money, health, or relationships, will become what appears as effortless.
It is NOT that YOU need to become improved or developed but only that you need to become AWARE of your already existing perfection, shift the consciousness or your way of thinking which is creating your results and the conditions will improve themselves. It's not necessary that you improve yourself but become aware of self, who and what you "truly are" so that the events, conditions and circumstances in your life can be improved.
This doesn't happen as a result of "improving" or "developing" self but rather becoming more "aware" of self and developing the understanding of the power freely provided to you that you already and have always personally held. The reality is that we don't need to improve but rather become aware of the need to be reminded and reacquainted with what we already are and begin to consciously utilize what we discover to begin consciously creating what we desire to experience. Just as in the lawnmower example above, THAT is the "Secret" switch that will make things hum for you.
In my opinion, self improvement and personal development should be changed to "Self Awareness Improvement" or "Awareness Development" which would take the predominant focus of fixing something that doesn't require fixing and shift that focus to areas that do.
Why MANY Traditional Self Improvement Programs Fail To Provide Long Term and Sustainable Results
In traditional self improvement the teachings are most generally structured in such a way that has you "Doing" something more from a physical perspective. In a world of stress, anxiety, already overloaded schedules you MOST CERTAINLY don't need anything else to do, at least from a physical perspective!!
Traditional Self Improvement has the masses looking in the external world for solutions which totally overlooks the Source where those solutions come from and as a result fail to address the cause or source from where EVERYTHING in the external world is derived from. This source, this cause begins with and results from an inalienable right of free will that has been provided to you to develop an "Inner Conscious Awareness" concerning your abilities.
In ALL cases, self improvement is a futile attempt to somehow become better with the "perception" that doing so will enable you to experience the desired outcome long term if those desires are ever achieved and experienced at all.
Although becoming more is essential to receiving more, becoming more is misinterpreted by most to mean fixing some physical aspect of themselves. In reality becoming more only means to become more "Aware" of the limitless power provided to you and tracing back what it is that is creating the events, conditions and circumstances in your life, adjusting that cause or source to be in alignment or harmony with your desired outcomes and the result will be that you experience them.
What is this cause or source?...Consciousness. It's the quality of your thinking which is already creating the events, conditions and circumstances perfectly.
Being unconscious of the quality of that thinking is often perceived as a needed improvement of self when in reality it is only a matter of becoming conscious or aware of the thoughts, beliefs, emotions and actions which are doing the creating as a result of an already perfect you operating within an already perfectly created plan which is producing perfect results based on what you are directing or asking it to.
Doing so will enable you to clearly see that whatever it is that you are currently experiencing is happening just as you are instructing it to although most don't see and believe this because they aren't conscious of what it is that they are creating.
Awareness turns the unconscious creators who feel they are victims of circumstance into conscious and purposeful creators who, once that awareness is established, soon discover that they are in reality creators of circumstance and that whatever it is that they are currently creating is unfolding perfectly just as they instruct.
So in conclusion Self Improvement / Personal Development isn't necessary at all but rather circumstance improvement, or "awareness development" which will automatically bring about life improvement in EVERY aspect of life happens as a result of becoming aware of the "True Nature" of yourself, the "Perfection" that you already are and the limitless power that has already been provided to you. The key to living a full, wholesome and prosperous life is only a matter of becoming aware of self and discovering the limitless value and creative power that you already possess to consciously and purposefully shape your external world REGARDLESS of what area that might be.
The key is NOT in the improvement of self but rather establishing the "correct knowledge" concerning who and what you already are, internalizing the reality until belief sets in, consciously direct the newly established thought patterns based on those beliefs allowing your emotions to intensify and harmonize with what you most desire to experience, remain open and attentive to the ways and means as they show up and you'll soon know what it is to become a conscious and purposeful creator enabling you to begin experiencing a life of "Heaven on Earth."
The majority of self improvement programs fail to provide the long term and sustainable results desired because they fail to look and delve deeper than the physical aspects of life and as such don't enable those who are misguided in seeking out avenues of "SELF improvement" or "PERSONAL development" to develop the understanding of the true source of the events, conditions and circumstances which make up their life experience and as such fail to ever develop the necessary awareness and belief as to their "True" potential which is "Infinite" and "Limitless."
There is a simple solution……Self improvement simply needs to be replaced with Self Awareness Improvement. That slight shift in focus as insignificant as it may "seem" would begin a snowball effect that would radically shift the world in a tremendously beneficial way.
You don't need to be improved, you only need to "awaken" to what you already are and be reminded of what you already know at some level which has been overwritten and reprogrammed by many times "falsely established traditional teachings" which in turn will enable you to become all that you have a desire to become. You only need to be re-"mind" -ed to undo the self limiting and self sabotaging programming that has made you believe that you are somehow flawed and less than perfect.
Once you have internalized and developed the understanding as to what you truly are, you will have mastered the ability to become a conscious and purposeful creator of the events, conditions and circumstances which make up your life experience.
You don't need to become self improved but rather self aware so that the conditions that you choose to experience can be "consciously" manifest and created in your life experience.
Self Improvement will only lead to continual disappointment and limited results at best. Self Awareness Improvement will inevitably lead to Self and Life Mastery. You already have and are all that you need to be. You only need to be reminded and become aware that it's true.
Some additional statistics to "become aware" of….
According to the Center For Disease Control in Atlanta Georgia 80% of all illness and disease is due to stress. In more recent research performed by Dr. Bruce Lipton PHD., a cellular biologist and best selling author of "The New Biology Of Belief" who conducted extensive research at Stanford Universities School of Medicine states that percentage is extremely conservative and claims that stress is the cause for 95 PLUS% of illness and disease.
So WHO is "allowing" that stress and more importantly Why is EVERYONE so stressed? Because the majority lack the "Awareness" of who and what they are and their individual ability to resolve the issues which are creating the stress that is responsible.
A focus on fixing a "self" that is already perfect can only lead to frustration which results in creating more "external" conditions which create additional stress which only serves to increase what it is that we are attempting to fix to begin with.
I vote that we eliminate self improvement and personal development and become more aware. How about you?
Do you have a sincere desire to improve the conditions in your life? Forget self improvement and personal development and focus on self awareness improvement or "Circumstance Improvement", develop the awareness of "Real Truth" that you are perfect just the way you are, that ALL of creation is a miracle and is showing up as a result of a "perfect plan" that NEVER errs or wavers, become consciously aware of what it is that you are creating and how, change that which is not harmonizing with the desired outcomes and in doing so your life will become one of joy, fulfillment, wholeness, infinite possibility and limitless potential with "seemingly effortless" ease.
What we choose to refer to as Abundance and Happiness.
Now…..since it probably not feasible to think that a multi-billion dollar per year industry is going to change it's name or way of doing business any time in the near future based on my humble perspective, to provide YOU with the most benefit, find and utilize personal development and self improvement resources that place the predominant focus on making you more aware of "The True Power Of You" and your journey to health, wealth and limitless abundance will be shortened..DRAMATICALLY.
At least that's MY perspective based on my own experiences.
What do YOU think? That's what truly matters.
Copyright © 2007-2012 Abundance-and-Happiness.com
Chuck Danes is the founder of Enlightened Journey Enterprises as well as an author, coach, personal performance trainer and the creator of The 7 Hidden Keys To Conscious Creation. For more than 3 decades Chuck has been assisting individuals around the world from all walks of life, in bridging the gap between where they are and where they truly desire to be in the physical, financial, relational, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of their lives. Chuck's monthly personal empowerment ezine, Enlightened Journey is freely distributed to tens of thousands in 194 countries around the world.
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