The Personal In The Professional
Personal development is something that is heavily focused on during our younger years. Why? Because it’s important to our growth. It helps us pick up on social cues and be productive members of society. Interestingly enough, these personable skills we learn are known as “transferrable” skills, meaning they can be used in different types of life situations. They include things such as anxiety management, conflict management, and time management. As we grow and mature, we acquire and develop these skills as we go through various kinds of social interactions.
With how important these skills are, you would think they would be an area of focus in the professional world. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Oftentimes, what we see is employers showing their workforce the necessary skills to do a job.
And that’s it.
These skills are hardly ever considered as vital to the workforce, and so are not treated as important. The common misconception in the professional world is the idea of “know enough to do enough”. But what happens if it truly isn’t enough?
For instance, a plumber learns how to fix a sink, but not how to deal with an irate customer. The plumber is then left to wonder, “Now what?” as he is being screamed at by an angry customer.
By having a personal development skill like conflict management, the plumber would be able to gain control of the situation and remain professional while calming the client.
This is one of the countless situations where having strong personal management skills would be beneficial, which is why it is so important for people to have them. They can be applied to the workplace and other professional areas in life, making the need to have a work-life balance so important.
The Need For Work-Life Balance
We have work and personal life problems we deal with, and how we handle those things can be done in a myriad of different ways.
Some will argue that work-life balance is impossible to achieve, but we know that not to be true. It is not a one-size-fits-all. Everyone’s work-life balance will look different because it is what works for them. Having a strong foundation in personal development helps us recognize what our limits are and set boundaries to ensure we can continue to function within society without having to surpass those limits.
We often wonder why people get burned out. When it happens, what we are talking about are people who are putting the weight of the world on their shoulders. With that comes the pressure to keep up our efforts to remain relevant, informed, and connected at all times.
Eventually, the tank will be empty, and the limit will be reached. Many of us hit this stage and continue past it, leading to burnout and dissatisfaction.
Know Your Strengths, Recognize Your Weaknesses
The good news is there are ways to prevent burnout, overwhelm, and upset. One major way is having these strong personal management skills and evaluating where your strengths lie. Many of us do not enjoy thinking about our deficits and areas that may need work, but you can use your strengths to your advantage.
Well, if you already have a type of strength in an area, you can use that area to transfer some skills into an area of weakness.
It takes a bit of self-reflection, but it is incredibly rewarding once you go through the process.
The important thing to emphasize is this is not something that is done overnight. It takes time and effort. And we need to remember the path and destination will look different for every single person.
As the professional world continues to evolve, employers are beginning to put more focus on personal development and are making efforts to provide employees with ways to achieve a sense of work-life balance. Shorter workweeks, flexible schedules, training, and other benefits are now being made more commonplace in the working world. With these changes employers are making, hopefully, we will see more of how personal development and the professional world go hand in hand.