But wait. What’s the big deal about personal growth? Didn’t we learn all we needed to know in Kindergarten? That’s what Robert Fulghum told us back in the 1980s.
Don’t count on it.
Sure, we learned a lot of important life lessons at a young age. But we know there’s always more to learn and explore. We have no idea how much we don’t know and unaware that we don’t know it (as opposed to what we know we don’t know).
The vast majority of U.S. Boomers have at least a high school education – 88 percent. Nearly 30 percent have bachelor’s degrees or higher and another 28.5 percent have some college.
And while we’re a generally educated bunch of folks, much more so than the generation before us, that doesn’t let us off the hook. That doesn’t mean it’s time to sit back and stop learning and growing. Face it, we’re never done!
We know that personal growth is not just accumulating more knowledge – filling up our brains. And it could include that – from learning a new language or new skill to finding out how the Mayans built their pyramid-shaped stone cities.
Where would we go to do that?
But when our personal growth is more about finding our own strengths and weaknesses and discovering ways to fill in the gaps in our development, we may look elsewhere. We experiment with various venues including reinvention or transformation of ourselves and our careers.
We check out what self-help programs are available in our communities or nearby ones. We pore over books, magazines and testimonies that offer guidance in particular areas.
We just keep stretching, particularly stretching beyond our comfort zone. We dig deep in our psyches and get honest with ourselves (and others) about what makes us do or think or feel the way we do. We get to know and understand who we really are.
We create goals that require concerted effort to attain. We know the biggest growth is when those goals are bigger than our own concerns – like ending world hunger (huge) or even ending hunger in our neighborhoods (more doable) or at least read occasionally to a kindergarten class (easy).
So what there is to do is settle in for some fun, exploration and adventure in this realm of ongoing personal growth and development. Don’t worry about the growing pains – it’s worth it.