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Top 10 Barriers to Personal Growth & Development

written by: Saoirse OMara•edited by: Linda Richter•updated: 5/18/2011

There are ten great barriers to personal growth and development. Find out why they have such a great impact on us and what we can do to overcome them.

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    451413 R K B by Rainer-Sturm pixelio.de The greatest barriers to personal growth and development lie deep within ourselves. To overcome them, we have to identify them first. This article will name the most common barriers and give tips on how to overcome your personal barriers in order to reach your goals. Which barrier blocks your personal development is only yours to know.

    Image credit: pixelio.de, glitter by rainer sturm

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    The Barriers

    1) Fear is one of the greatest barriers to personal growth and development. It can manifest in various shapes. Some people fear to be mocked for what they do. Others are afraid of change. The most common fear is most probably the fear of failure. No one wants to fail and most of us are so afraid of it that we refrain from trying in the first place. If we do not try, we cannot fail.

     

    2) Laziness and lack of discipline are among the top barriers to personal growth and development. Personal growth and development mean change, and change is never easy. On the contrary, change means hard work and discipline. We start out bursting with motivation but give in as soon as we conquer the first difficulties. At that time, our personal growth and development might not seem worth the struggle. If we cannot do it today, there is always a tomorrow for a second try.

     

    3) Contentment and routine go hand in hand to form another barrier. Why should I change if my life is okay? It might, after all, change for worse. So content people stick with their lives as they are and forgo the possibility to pursue and fulfill their dreams in exchange for contentment. It works as it is, after all. Many people are afraid of the unknown, too, so a bad routine might still look better than the uncertainty change would bring.

     

    4) Skepticism is barrier number four. Skeptic persons have the opinion that they will not be able to change so they see no reason to try at all. After all, it would only cost time, effort and probably even money without resulting in anything.

     

    5) Some people forego the chance of personal growth and development because they do not have anyone supporting them. They feel that they will not make it on their own. Maybe they need someone who pushes them on when they are close to giving in, or their friends and family are even obviously against their plans.

     

    6) Some people see themselves as victims. According to them, the rest of the world is at fault for their own misery. They do not see a reason for personal change as they cannot change the others who are responsible.

     

    7) Lack of resources is another barrier to personal growth and development for many people. Personal change needs time and, depending on the field of change, it also requires money. Most people, however, do not have this time and money, and they are dependent on their jobs and income so that they cannot simply quit their jobs to work on themselves.

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    8) Guilt is a strong feeling that can prevent you from doing something for yourself. Maybe you think that you would neglect your children or your husband if you started learning a new language or doing more sports. You want to be there for others but completely forget yourself.

     

    9) If you do not know your own personal goals and dreams, you cannot try to reach them through personal development. Therefore, lack of self-knowledge is one of the greatest barriers to personal growth and development.

     

    10) Perfectionism is another barrier. Perfectionist people tend to give in as soon as they are less than perfect. They easily get frustrated and have the opinion “Either I do it in a perfect way, or I don’t do it at all." This attitude often results in no change at all as people just are not perfect.

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    How to Overcome Your Barriers to Personal Growth and Development

    First of all, you have to identify which are your personal barriers. None of them is insuperable. There are no real barriers in the form of a bodily or mental disability. Everyone can overcome his or her barriers to personal growth and development. All it requires are strength of will, persistence, and the right strategy.

    • Ask yourself what you really wish for your future. If you are content with your situation now, are you sure you still will be content ten years from now?
    • Tell yourself that you deserve the best, now and in the future. Your life should not only be ok, it should be great. You 180426 R by Thomas-Reyer--Juli-2007 pixelio.de only have this one.
    • Look for other people who want to change some part of their lives. Together, it is easier to overcome fear and you can boost your motivation. Try to meet regularly, for example once per week. Talk about your progress, your failures, and successes. Push each other forward.
    • Do not be demotivated when you do not see results at once or when your results are not perfect. Every small step forward is worth celebrating.
    • Be selfish. Take the time you need for yourself. Your husband and children are still important, of course, but you are just as important as they are. If you are unhappy, they will notice and be unhappy, too.
    • If you lack the resources, try to find other ways to reach your goal. Speak with people you trust. Together, it is easier to find a solution that works for you.

    Image Credit: pixelio.de, teamwork, by Thomas Reyer