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    7 Solid Ways to Keep Your Personal Development On the Up-and-Up Amidst COVID-19

    There are not many people on this planet who can honestly say this year went as planned. While the COVID-19 pandemic has changed our sense of normalcy, that doesn’t mean your momentum with personal development has to unravel as well. The goal of growth is easy enough, but under these circumstances, how can you expect to actually get closer to your goals? It’s not easy, but by focusing on what you can control now, you can utilize the current turbulence as a springboard for future success.

    1) Rework Your Routine

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    The only thing worse than having no routine is trying to force an outdated one where it no longer fits. The world has changed, and the ripple effects of this go from the highest levels all the way down to your day-to-day life. Even if you just had found an ideal routine, if you want to keep your personal development rolling, then it’s time to adjust your sails.

    Clean the slate and start anew with your schedule in terms of time management. Keep the same activities if you can, but also consider replacing them with something different that leads to the same end result. Your ultimate goals of development should remain in sight, the path to get there just might need to be tweaked.

    2) Enroll In Online Courses

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    Learning can occur in many forms, and during this socially distanced year, online courses have seen a huge spike in popularity. They are by nature extremely accessible, flexible schedule-wise, and perhaps most importantly - an effective means to keep yourself mentally stimulated. There are numerous options for online learning right now, and the pandemic has spurred an increase in their development.

    One which has adopted an interesting model is Gooroo Courses, a project spearheaded by Founder and CEO Scott Lee. For years Gooroo has aimed to connect tutors with students in need, but with the newly unveiled Gooroo Courses program, they plan to broaden their accessibility. I emailed Lee recently to get his thoughts on how online learning can be a tool to help avoid personal stagnation during this difficult time.

    “We’ve had a hand in various forms of education for years,” Lee explained. “But COVID-19 certainly forced us to focus on online education in particular. We are constantly adding new and engaging instructors renowned in their fields, which range from microeconomics to theatrical adventures. The online experience has some unique advantages such as being able to stop a lesson when you need to and then return to the exact spot later without missing a beat.”

    Continued Lee, “Right now Gooroo Courses is completely free to enroll, and even once we switch to paid memberships, we plan to offer free or reduced subscriptions to those who truly need it. Having access to education tools while traditional schools aren’t fully functioning can be a real lifesaver for anyone’s personal development - regardless of age, income, or location.”

    There’s plenty of options out there, and finding an online course that works for you can turn those long hours at home into something fruitful you’ll use for years to come.

    3) Nurture Your Networks

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    Your friends, families, and business contacts might be beyond arm’s reach now, but that doesn’t mean keeping up with one another is impossible. The same technology that can bridge the gap for education can do the same for your personal network.

    Right now making an effort to reach out matters as much or more than ever, and people remember those who show up in difficult times. Don’t let yourself or others fall into complete isolation.

    4) Stay Physical

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    It’s far too easy to fall into sluggishness when you scarcely leave your home. While it’s ok to have off days, and outright necessary to take full days of rest, if you aren’t incorporating some form of exercise into your new weekly, the end result will be messy.

    Without a strong physical base, you run the risk of becoming imbalanced. Even a short daily walk in the morning will shake off some mental fog that follows sleep, and if this isn’t possible, there are a plethora of bodyweight exercise routines out there with zero gear requirement.

    Find a way to get that heart rate up, work off some honest sweat, and afterward digging into the rest of your other personal development endeavors will all of sudden seem far easier.

    5) Clean and Cook

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    While the digital world can help you weather the storm in some respects, you need to know when to disengage. Performing simple tasks like cleaning and cooking might seem mundane, but they are an underrated cornerstone of personal development that work under any conditions.

    These manual processes give you much-needed variety in daily routines. You can stack them with music or podcasts, but really the important thing here is to have something to break up the monotony of doing any one activity, especially digital, too long. After a short tidy up or meal prep, you can return to work with fresh eyes and a renewed sense of energy.

    6) Reflect and Relax

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    These words might sound soft and indulgent, but their effects are anything but. Knowing when to slow down for the day is of equal importance to knowing how to begin it. Whether it’s reading a book, playing an instrument, just do something which brings you a sense of joy, ease, or laughter.

    By giving yourself this time and space, you give yourself a chance to look at the bigger picture behind and ahead of you. Think about what’s working for you, what might not be, and give yourself some appreciation for getting this far. Think of it as an overview checkpoint, you need to be occasionally outside of your rigorous personal development grind to view it somewhat objectively.

    7) Keep Your Sleep On a Schedule

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    You can’t underestimate sleep, and if left unchecked, it can quickly become an unruly beast. While everyone has different needs and rhythms, put some intention behind your sleep schedule so it’s more of a fountain than a puddle.

    Having a plan for the first hour before and after sleep helps make it a habit in time, which is far better than something that simply overtakes or flees from you at inopportune times. Without the essential recovery of a healthy sleep pattern, the rest of the day can fall apart before it begins. The consistent energy levels required for successful personal development start and end with sleep.

    Take Things Day by Day …

    Don’t think you need to adopt all of these measures overnight. Have patience, be kind to yourself, and in due time your personal development will be able to withstand this pandemic’s best attempts to topple it.

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