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Most people learn best by doing but expanding your skill set can be difficult if you’ve got a lot on your plate already. It’s always important to be developing yourself, so here are some ways to balance your current workload and your aims and goals, in order to achieve valuable skills and lasting, effective personal development.

Set goals
When attempting to self-improve, having some end goals in mind is near essential. Think about some concrete goals that you would like to achieve with your business, before working backwards and figuring out what skills you need to achieve them. From there, you can begin to figure out the ways you can expand your current work to practice these skills or create new ways of doing things that will allow you to develop.

One step at a time
While making your personal development plan and setting your goals, you may identify a variety of different areas that need development. In this case, it’s important to prioritise: what are the most essential skills that you need to gain? What time frame do you need to gain these skills in? Consider these things, as well as your current responsibilities, in order to figure out what you need to be developing now and what can wait till after you’ve built a more solid foundation of skills.

Record your progress
Recording your actions and progress can be a great motivator for keeping up your development tasks long term. Just a quick note on what you’ve done to progress towards your goal, what you feel you’ve learned, and how you’re feeling will allow you to centre yourself and, eventually, look at your progress long term, showing your growth and giving you motivation.

Do what works for you
Of course, if you’re at work you will already have a lot to be doing day-to-day. However, this can give you a safer environment to try out new things and learn new skills. If you already have an established process, try and incorporate some new skills into it that may make it more efficient while also allowing you to develop. If you try something and it doesn’t work, you can always go back to your old methods, but at least you’ve tried something new and perhaps learned something valuable.

Learn from failure
In a similar vein, learning a new skill will always have some hurdles which you can’t clear at first. Make sure you learn from these instances, as these are some of the most important lessons you will gain while learning a new skill, as you will learn a skill’s limitations and how to overcome them.