Before you begin your personal development journey, you need to know what it is that needs improvement.

The past year has brought with it several eye-opening revelations. What you used to enjoy may no longer give you happiness. What you thought you didn’t like is probably something that gives you joy right now. Similarly, in a professional aspect, it’s possible you’ve figured certain things out for your career or profession.

What you want to be or do is not the same as anyone else. This is why your personal development plan will be unique, targeted and inspiring only for you.

Learn more about a personal development plan, steps for personal development and its examples to build one for yourself!


  1. What Is Personal Development?

  2. What Are The Steps For Personal Development?

  3. Personal Development Plan – What It Looks Like!

  4. Be Your Best Self

What Is Personal Development?


Personal development is the practice of building yourself up. It involves creating a personal development plan to help you assess your strengths and weaknesses. Identifying problem areas will direct you to build improvement strategies.

Today, many of us engage in personal development as a means to improve our skills and abilities. It leads to better opportunities both personally and professionally. Say you’re a junior staff writer at a local media firm. You decide to enroll in film school part-time and equip yourself with video-making skills. This adds value to your role. Not only do you get an opportunity to write but also be on site to shoot videos, edit and upload. 

Personal development is an exercise every person must invest in because learning, unlearning and relearning are significant aspects of life. They help you see things from different perspectives, understand and read others but more importantly, understand yourself far better. 

What Are The Steps For Personal Development?


Before we explore a personal development plan example, let’s learn more about how you can invest in personal development. Here are the steps for personal development you can undertake:

1. Vision

Your vision is what drives you. Knowing where you’re headed and why is what gives you the motivation, courage and inspiration to go against all odds. Sometimes, it can be difficult to keep moving, especially when you’re facing challenges or setbacks. A vision is your guiding light. It may be something like becoming an invaluable member of your community, setting up an animal welfare center or becoming a reliable friend and family to people around you. Your vision is unique to you and it’s the first step in your personal development plan sample.

2. Skills

Enrolling in a personal development program will help you improve your skills and abilities. You have to take time to understand what you’re good at and what you need to work on. Each person has a unique skill set and ability that they have to offer. You may not be good at marketing but you may be a great salesperson. You may be a good listener but not so much a speaker. Whatever your skills, a personal development program will help you build them up. You can enroll in a program that caters to your needs specifically. This way you get to stay on track for your vision. Of course, the key takeaway of the personal development program will be skill development—something that’ll help you lifelong.

3. Benchmark

As part of your personal development plan, it’s important to set standards or benchmarks for what you want to achieve. This is also similar to goal-setting. It’ll help you analyze where you are and where you want to be. What it takes to bridge this gap is what you need to do while drafting a personal development plan sample. You’ll be able to determine just how much work you need to put into it. For instance, if you’re thinking of setting up your own website and you have some experience, you won’t need to build your website development skills that much. But if you’re starting from scratch, you’ll need to enroll in a course or seek expert assistance.

4. Importance

How important is it for your growth to develop your skills or abilities? Determining the level of importance or the significance of your skills in your personal and professional life is a great way to push yourself in the right direction. For instance, you may be thinking of learning how to paint. But at the same time, you may want to upskill because you need a job. You have to consider the importance and urgency of each of these activities separately and make a decision. Upskilling may be more important at the moment than painting. Once you have a job and are well-settled, you can think of adding learning how to paint to your personal development plan example.

5. Destination

Your destination is not unlike your vision but more defined. This step in your personal development plan will be a culmination of all your efforts. You need to know what you have to do, how you have to do it, why you need to and where it’ll take you. These four aspects of your personal development are what will make it successful. Most of all, it’ll help keep you centered in case you lose sight of where you’d like to be. It’s easy to get lost in the daily grind, especially when the workload is too much to take.

A personal development plan is your roadmap to success. You can build it however you want, in ways that work for you. You can find a personal development plan example online to guide you. Try out a few ways that seem suitable and get started on your personal development journey. Let’s look at a personal development plan example to give you an idea. 

Personal Development Plan – What It Looks Like!


The age-old narrative of building a personal development plan based on what others think or will accept as success is now defunct. It’s not just about goals or your current skill level. Instead, the importance of a personal development plan is in how it guides your growth, learning and development. You don’t need to build a plan that works for everyone—it needs to work only for yourself. Focusing on what you need right now and in the future tells you the importance of a personal development plan. This is what makes it sound and robust.

Here’s a personal development plan example broken down into manageable steps:

  1. First, think of what you need to do. This can be something like building communication skills, learning how to code or even taking more time for yourself. These can be part of your vision. Everything else that follows will be built on these areas of development. Some people even choose development areas like overcoming stage fright or reconnecting with former friends. Your personal development will be based on what you need when you’re creating your plan.
  2. Second, highlight what you’ll achieve as a result of improving on these development areas. For instance, building your communication skills will help you in public speaking, delivering excellent presentations at work and building a personal brand. Others may include building self-confidence, traveling alone or even equipping yourself with a diverse, transferable skill set.
  3. Third, write down actionable steps to act on each of the development areas listed in the former steps. Actionable steps give you the nudge you need to go out and do something for personal development. This may be enrolling in an online course, attending classes at a university or starting a study group with friends. You can even engage in self-study where you direct yourself, add nudges and set benchmarks for your growth.
  4. Fourth, write down what success looks like to you. If you want to become a language expert, for instance, success can be reading a complex text in that language and writing an analysis or book report. Your criteria for success depends on the varying degrees of proficiency you seek to achieve. It may be moderate or expert, depending on your purpose or your ‘why’. Your ‘why’ is the most important part of your personal development plan. It gives you meaning and the drive to keep going.
  5. Finally, appreciate your effort, hard work and accomplishments every time you finish a task. These small victories can keep you on track to success. You may falter a few times, but you’ll find it easier to stick to the plan if you keep motivating yourself.

A personal development plan is not that different from bullet journaling or the multiple to-do lists we create on a regular basis. It’s just that it’s more aligned to what you need to do to become better at your job or as a person. 

Be Your Best Self


Harappa’s Leading Self course will teach you what you need to do to expand your potential and invest in personal development. It doesn’t have to be a constant battle with yourself to improve and keep improving. Instead, find ways to sustain your development and build your skills over time. Mostly, you need experience to become better at what you do. On the way to personal growth, recognize the interferences that stand in your way and learn to overcome them. Don’t be hard on yourself and take time off if you need to. Our course will teach you how to pace yourself when it comes to utilizing opportunities for your professional growth. Start learning today and embrace the lifelong process of personal development.

Related articles

Discover more from Harappa with a selection of trending blogs on the latest topics in online learning and career transformation