1. Don’t pigeon hole yourself. There are so many tools to help understand yourself better like MBTI, Honey and Mumford learning styles, Belbin team roles etc. These can help but don’t give you the full picture. In fact most of these tools focus on your preferences. Sometimes the more powerful development happens when you challenge your fears or weaknesses. Always play to your strengths but understand your weaknesses.
2. Carpe diem. I mean this in two ways. First off be pro-active in your development path. Find every opportunity to develop yourself and schedule it into your time. Secondly take development from the every day. You may have behaviours or habits that you want to change, or you may even want to understand why something works. In your day to day work take a second to think about the mechanics of each task.
3. Learn from the good and the bad. Don’t just learn from your mistakes. As long as you practice number 2, you can understand why you are successful and apply that in other parts of your work. Also take time over your mistakes. You should only make a mistake once. And don’t beat yourself up when you do. Yes acknowledge it, but don’t let it stop you going further.
4. Ask. Looking in a mirror will only show you one side of yourself. Find a mentor or manager who you know will offer a balanced viewpoint. All bad or all good is no reflection of anyone. The more perceptions you can get the more you can see the full picture. This can be tough to hear sometimes. Tough doesn’t always mean bad.
5. Document the wins. Remember where you came from and how far you have gone. It can keep you motivated to reach where you want to go to.
Whatever you want to achieve you will have to grow to get there. This takes time and effort. Keep it up and everyone can get there.