14 things you can change about yourself to grow as a person

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There are things about yourself that you wish you could change, and there are parts of your life that you’d like to be better.

You see other people living what you feel are fabulous lives and think you could do the same if only you were different. 

But you don’t make any effort to change.

You’ve tried many times in the past only to fail, over and over again.

And you’re tired of trying and failing.

But consider this: are you attempting to change in the right ways? Do you know which things to change about yourself to get the desired results?

As you contemplate how be a better version of yourself, below are fourteen things you may wish to consider working on.

These points will help you achieve the lasting change that has eluded you in the past. They’ll give you a better chance of being successful at reaching your goal of personal development and growth. 

Consult a life coach to help you figure out what to change about yourself and your life, and how. Use the quick and simple form on Bark.com to have qualified life coaches email you to discuss their coaching services and provide quotes.

14 Things To Change About Yourself

1. Your values.

Do you know what your values are?

It’s ok if you don’t.

Many people don’t give much thought to their values. We just kind of trudge along and go with the crowd. We rarely consider what we value or hold as important.

This pushes many people to live lives that are superficial and incompatible with who they truly are inside. They fill their houses with stuff, closets with clothes, and garages with cars they don’t need. 

If you’ve realized that your life is full of stuff that doesn’t bring you happiness or fulfillment, you either need to change your values or change your life to match your values. 

Spend some time in quiet reflection and think about what you value. People around you may value money and success, but maybe your values lie in giving back to the community.

Your values don’t have to be the same as everybody else’s. There is nothing wrong with valuing things that differ from what society emphasizes. You only have one life to live, so embrace your differences and stay true to yourself.

Once you can identify your values or the values you would like to have, look for ways to change your life to align with those values.  

2. Your priorities.

This might be a bit tricky. We generally have an idea of the things or people we should prioritize. But in reality, the things or people we do prioritize are vastly different. 

For example, we know we should prioritize our children. But… when our office calls, we quickly scramble to pick up even if we’re in the middle of a conversation with our kids.

We may claim to prioritize being debt-free, but our go-to payment option is our credit card.

Examine your life and be brutally honest with yourself. What do you prioritize? Who do you put first in your life? Does the what/who that you prioritize align with your values?

If not, it‘s time for a major adjustment in your priorities. 

3. Your mindset.

Do you have a positive or a negative mindset?

Is the glass half empty or half full?

Do you expect good things to happen to you or are you just waiting for the other shoe to drop?

Is there even a point in trying to change your life for the better if your mindset is negative? You probably don’t think you can do it. If you don’t believe any good will come from it, then why go to all this trouble?

Certainly, if there’s to be any hope of changing your life for the long haul, one of the first things you need to tackle is your mindset. Because, if you are already defeated in your mind, your actions and behavior will soon follow.  

You must believe in yourself and change your way of thinking. That’s the only way you can have any type of success in life.

You must trust that you have the skills and ability to do what you desire. If you do not, there’s no habit, pill, or magic available that can overcome what you think you can or can’t do. 

4. Your self-talk.

Your mindset and self-talk go hand-in-hand. You can’t have a positive mindset and talk to yourself poorly.

On the flip side, repeating positive mantras every day will accomplish little if you don’t believe what you’re saying. 

Change the way you talk to yourself. Talk to yourself the way you would talk to a friend or a small child who needs understanding and compassion. 

Let’s say you made a huge mistake at work. Instead of beating yourself up about it and telling yourself how stupid you are, calm down and tell yourself you did your best. Wish yourself better luck next time or look for ways to improve your output so you’ll be more prepared in the future.

If you dropped the ball, however, look over the situation and figure out where you erred and how. Learn from your mistake and come up with a plan to avoid a similar error in the future. 

Change your self-talk to match your new mindset. When you’re in the right frame of mind, there’s not much you can’t accomplish.

5. Your health.

Your physical health has as big an impact on your mental health and mindset as your mental health and mindset have on your physical health. When you are healthy, it’s easier to maintain a positive mindset.

If you don’t feel good, being positive will be so much harder. You need to get your health in order because there’s no mind trick, positive thoughts, or goal setting that can overcome the physical limitations brought on by your poor health. 

Visit your doctor for a comprehensive medical checkup to make sure no vitamin deficiency is causing you to feel unusually tired or depressed. Under the advice of your doctor, clean up your diet and incorporate exercise into your routine. 

You’d be surprised how changes to your diet and exercise regimen can improve not just your overall health, but also make you feel more empowered and happy.

6. Your sense of adventure.

Did you ever play make-believe when you were young? Were you the type of child that would fight epic battles on the playground? Did you ever daydream about visiting the far-off lands you spent hours reading about in books or watching in cartoons?

What happened to your sense of adventure?

Now, as adults, many of us have lost our desire to try new things or go to new places. In place of our childlike sense of adventure, we have responsibilities and a fear of the unknown or of looking stupid. 

Think back to those days when the only toy you needed was your imagination. You and your friends (sometimes even they weren’t real) would happily play outside for hours. 

If you feel that since then, life has become less fun…

Get out of your comfort zone. 

Get your sense of adventure back. At least as an adult, you can actually try out the things you dream about without having to get permission from your parents.  

7. Your support group.

The truth is, changing your life could mean changing your friends or intimate partner.

If your relationship is toxic, there’s a limit to how good you can feel about yourself or your life. A toxic relationship, whether platonic or romantic, professional or personal, will always bleed into other areas of your life because it affects you psychologically, emotionally, and sometimes physically.

Toxic relationships aren’t even worth trying to manage. Doing so will hold you back from making a lasting change in your life.

Because, as toxic people are so fond of doing, they will actively hold you back through criticism or by discouraging you from taking steps to do and be better.

Unless the parties involved are interested in changing for the betterment of the relationship, managing it is futile and perhaps damaging to your self-esteem. 

Often, it‘s better to go no or low contact. 

Let them see the effect of the changes you are making in your life from afar. 

We really do recommend that you search for a life coach through Bark.com as coaching can be highly effective in helping you to grow and develop in the ways you wish to.

8. Your work ethic.

If you’re going to be brutally honest with yourself, would you say your work ethic is where it should be? If you were your boss, would you like an employee like you? Or are you busy half-assing your work, hoping that you’re doing enough to get by?

Let’s say you have your own business. Can your business be successful with the current level of your work ethic? If not, it’s time to change. 

Having a good work ethic is about putting in hard work and giving your best, regardless of your boss, company, or mood. It’s about being productive, dependable, dedicated, and working well with your team to produce the best results you can.

While you may want to believe you’d work harder if you were working for yourself or had another job or a different boss, the truth is, your past performance is a good predictor of your future success. This means if you’re a mediocre employee right now, chances are you’ll be a mediocre employee at your dream job, with a different boss, or when you’re your own boss. 

You need to develop your work ethic now in your current situation.

It may be tempting to blame others and extenuating circumstances for your lack of quality output. However, the choice to do your best or the bare minimum is really up to you. Developing a good work ethic is one of those skills that will come in handy, whether you’re working for yourself or someone else. 

A good work ethic will help you produce high-quality work on time and will keep you focused on your goals, whatever they may be. Having a good work ethic is the one skill that takes your dreams from the future to the present.  

9. Your career.

How often do you wake up in the morning dreading going to work? Instead of resting on Sundays, do you spend the day cranky because work starts in the morning? Are you anxious and stressed out by the mere thought of your job? 

Although you likely already know this, it’s time to change your job or perhaps your career. The purpose of our jobs and careers is to provide us with the financial means to live the life we want to live.

We are supposed to work in order to live. We were never meant to live to work. That is, our lives are not meant to revolve around our jobs.

Sadly, many of us have elevated our jobs to unmanageable levels. When we’re at home, we’re mentally at work or catching up on one or two things in our home office.

We take work home to finish up what we were doing in the office. We promise ourselves or our family members that it will just be a few minutes or a couple of hours. But before we know it, we’ve spent the entire weekend hunched over our laptops. 

Slowly but surely, our jobs are taking over every aspect of our lives. Work stress is negatively affecting our health. The long hours are impacting our intimate and familial relationships. Worse still, it’s not making us any happier.

It’s time for you to make a change in your career. It’s time for you to choose the people and the work that matters to you. 

10. Your attachment to the past.

Letting go of the past is a critical step you need to take to change yourself from who you are into who you want to be.

You need to let go of who you or other people thought you were and step into the person you wish to become. 

The future is unknown and that can be a little scary. There is uncertainty about the steps/decisions you’re making.

You’re not sure if you’ll like the “new” you or the life you’ve built. This could all be a huge mistake. What if your life is actually fine and you’re suffering from a midlife crisis or something?

It can be tempting to hold on to the past. While it doesn’t presently make you happy, it is familiar and comfortable. 

But you’ll never know for sure if you’re making the right or wrong decision until you let go of your past. Wipe the slate clean, forgive yourself for the mistakes you made, and write a new present and future.

Forget what you‘ve been told about yourself. Embrace who you‘d like to be. 

11. Your fears. 

Everyone is afraid of something. We’ve all got something that keeps us up at night, tossing and turning with worry.

For some, it’s the fear of being betrayed by a romantic partner. Others are afraid of losing their job and being broke. Some people fear being exposed as an imposter at work. Maybe you are afraid of change itself

While we all have our internal fears that we’re struggling with, not everyone allows those fears to stop them from pursuing goals or stepping out of their comfort zone.

For example, a person might be terrified that their spouse will one day betray them and their relationship. That fear, however, will not necessarily stop that person from taking a chance at love. It won’t stop them from being a loving partner and having a healthy relationship. 

You, though, might withdraw within yourself emotionally to protect against any chance of being hurt. As a result, you could block yourself off from being vulnerable and having a healthy, romantic relationship. 

It’s time for you to change how you deal with your fears. You need to learn better-coping skills to confront and handle your fears so they don’t shut you off from experiencing some of life’s greatest gifts.

Don’t let your fears hold you back from doing things you are interested in or stop you from welcoming new opportunities. 

Confront your fears and take away their power so you no longer feel unfulfilled and stuck.

12. Your environment.

Look around your space. What do you feel as you glance around? Are you at peace or tense? Is your space a reflection of you? Or is your environment just a place where you keep your stuff? 

Take a look outside. Do you feel inspired and calm when you look at where you live? Is your neighborhood soothing or is it busy and chaotic? Does the area feel vibrant and full of life? Or do you struggle to sleep at night because of all the noise?

The one thing you need to change about yourself might just be your environment. If your environment is not conducive to your well-being or creative endeavors, it’s not a place that will help you strive to be a better you.

You may not be in the position to move or alter your environment much. However, there are some things you can do to make your environment more soothing or reflective of your personality.

If moving is out of the question, try exploring more conducive environments. You could visit a friend or rent an Airbnb for a few days in an area that’s more ideal for you. If home doesn’t feel like home, consider redecorating or adding a few statement pieces to your environment to give it some personality.

Changing your environment can be as expensive or affordable as you want it to be. But financial constraints should not be your excuse for remaining in a space that does nothing for your well-being.

13. Your time management.

How do you spend your time? From the time you wake up in the mornings, are you rushing from one errand to another? Or do you while away your days and wonder how it’s suddenly time for bed?

If time seems to fly by and you can’t explain what you’ve been able to accomplish, you need to take stock of how you spend your days. Then make some changes so you can better manage your time. 

Do you spend hours on social media, scrolling from post to post or watching one video after another? Consider going on a social media detox for a day or two to give yourself a sense of how much time you’re wasting on the different social media apps. 

You could even extend your social media detox to include the TV, video games, and anything else that causes you to lose track of time. During the period of the detox, work on finishing the projects you’ve been putting off, spend time with your loved ones, or read a book. 

Pay attention to how you spend your days. Look at how much time you give to doing work that is meaningful to you and how much time you waste. 

Change the way you spend your time, so you live a life that is more focused and full of impact.

14. Your attitude toward change. 

Change is hard. Attempting to change ourselves is usually harder than we expect. We typically underestimate how quickly we can make sweeping changes to our lifestyles. We overestimate our ability to make changes, layering too many on at once. 

When we inevitably fail, we beat ourselves up about it. Never once considering that we took on too much for us to handle.

The desire to change is one that many people experience during their lives. People often fail at achieving lasting change because of the points mentioned above.

We fail to understand that changing things about ourselves is a gradual process. Rarely is it a one-and-done situation. 

To achieve lasting change, your attitude toward change and your ability to change needs to…well, change. You need to understand that adjusting habits and thinking patterns that you’ve had for years, if not decades, cannot happen in a week or even a month. 

It will take time.

You need to learn how to be compassionate with yourself when you fall below your expectations. After all, you are unlearning lessons that have been with you for much of your life. 

So cut yourself some slack.

A final note.

If you’ve done your best, sought help, and changed your thinking patterns, and you are still unable to change that aspect of your life that you dislike, look to the one area that actually needs changing—your attitude toward what you cannot change.

Accept your faults. 

As human beings, we are not perfect, nor will we ever be. All we can do is continue to strive to be better. Lasting change takes time and is a lot of work. Let’s face it, if it were easy, more people would do it. 

But when you‘ve done what you can, all that’s left for you to do is accept what you

cannot change. Stop fighting against your fallibility. 

Just do your best to be the best you.

Still not sure of the ways you should change, or how to go about it? Talking to someone can be highly motivating and keep you on track. It’s a great way to get your thoughts and your worries out of your head so you can work through them.

Speak to a life coach. Why? Because they are trained to help people in situations like yours. They can help you to perform some introspection to decide what to change while providing tailored advice to help you make those changes.

Bark.com is a website that helps you locate life coaches to work with – simply enter a few simple details and have a variety of life coaches contact you. You can then choose the one who is best suited to you.

While you may try to work through this yourself, it may be a bigger issue than self-help can address. And if it is affecting your mental well-being, relationships, or life in general, it is a significant thing that needs to be resolved.

Too many people try to muddle through and do their best to overcome issues that they never really get to grips with. If it’s at all possible in your circumstances, coaching is 100% the best way forward.

Here’s that link again to begin the process by completing a simple form.

You’ve already taken the first step just by searching for and reading this article. The worst thing you can do right now is nothing. The best thing is to speak to a life coach. The next best thing is to implement everything you’ve learned in this article by yourself. The choice is yours.

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