3 Steps for Taking Personal Development to the Next Level Serial entrepreneur and author Geoff Hughes shares his insights on living a life full of purpose and leaving behind a legacy with zero regrets.
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
There are two extreme reactions that can come out of people when the topic of personal development is brought up: an eye roll or enthusiasm to hear more. In the case of the former, many would say that it's obvious what needs to be done for self-improvement, i.e. good habits like diet/exercise, reading, sharpening time-management skills, networking/socializing, catering to hobbies, etc. But as with many other things, it's so much easier in theory than in practice, and this is why books, seminars, videos and programs that revolve around personal development fare so well.
The need for guidance is especially urgent for entrepreneurs, most of whom are self-made and didn't necessarily grow up surrounded by role models for professional success. As a result, they are constantly battling their anxiety, fear and doubt.
Serial entrepreneur, author and speaker Geoff Hughes was one of these people. His formerly negative mindset, which mainly stemmed from his lack of self-confidence, led to a series of ups and downs in both his personal and professional life. However, it was only after embracing personal-development tactics that he became more resilient, eventually earning seven figures and reaching new heights despite being diagnosed with Miller Fisher Syndrome (an autoimmune disease) on his 40th birthday.
Hughes now makes it his mission to help people unlock their true potential through media on his website and via his 12-week program called Monetize Your Mind. Both the program and the book are structured to help people eliminate self-doubt, so they can live a life full of purpose with wealth and health, leaving behind a legacy with zero regrets.
I recently connected with Huges for a phone interview to discuss quick ways that entrepreneurs can get on the path to personal development, based on his own life experiences. Here's what he had to say.
Open your mind to change your perspective
Long before creating Monetize Your Mind, Hughes was going through an emotional rollercoaster. Many of his peers told him to look into personal development, and after hitting a series of lows, he opened his mind and gave into it.
"I wasn't feeling good about myself, and I decided to go on that first journey of personal development," he recalls. "I went to Landmark Forum, and it really enlightened me that it wasn't just my perspective that mattered. And I remember leaving that and saying I was going to change the world, I was going to be a different person, I was going to have different relationships."
Seek a mentor you can count on
When you start on the path to personal development, see if you can get yourself a mentor who is close to having achieved what it is that you want. They would not only be able to guide you on the ins and outs of reaching those goals, but they may also expose you to other brilliant minds that could collectively inspire you to be that much better.
Hughes recounts a time when, "I went to go look for this guy that was doing Internet marketing sales, because I just really wanted to get a better understanding of what he was doing. Coincidentally, he was starting a daily deals company as well in Vancouver. So I went over there, and we had a conversation. It was my first exposure to what it meant to be or what it was like to have a mentor. Thanks to him, I was exposed to different-thinking people, forward-thinking people, and became exposed to a whole different environment."
Educate yourself on what keeps you up at night
What is it that keeps you up at night? Maybe it's how to win over investors. Maybe it's how to get more leads. Maybe it's how to establish thought leadership or how to loosen up in business settings. Regardless of the subject, become a master on it so you can get greater clarity. For Hughes, concerns over his autoimmune disease threw a curveball in his self-development, and so he started to educate himself.
"Through that exploration, I became obsessed with the biomechanics of the brain, psychology and how everything worked," he explains. "And I decided to take all of the most amazing pieces that I learned and started integrating them into my life."
He charactierizes that process as "the most challenging thing that I'd ever experienced in my life, because I was recreating my self-identity. I came out on the other end fully aligned, but more than anything, I understood what was going on in the world, why people weren't seeing success, looking at things from a different economic visualization. I decided that I wanted to really make an impact on the world, and I've committed myself to teach people this stuff because, quite honestly, they don't teach this stuff in school."
Above all, Hughes is proof that we can absolutely overcome any negative effects of a shaky past. Success can be achieved for anyone, even if they don't have hotshot connections at their disposal. It all comes down to one's determination, persistence and perseverance.