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The Fundamentals of IDPs for Personal Growth: They Aren’t Just for Work

How to achieve your personal growth goals with an IDP – Part One

Key takeaways:

  • An IDP, or Independent Development Plan, is a professional and personal growth tool.
  • It works by helping you visualize your goals to take actionable steps to make them happen.
  • Key elements such as “vision setting” and “discovering core values” promote success in all areas of life.
  • Identifying your core values requires doing some inner work.
  • Determining your weakest areas is hard, but it helps you grow.

The world’s most successful leaders have a genuine concern for others’ well-being – it is more profoundly interesting to them than work-related issues. This concern ventures into personal needs and aspirations because strong leaders understand the correlation between a happy personal life and a productive teammate who is satisfied in their role.  

Getting teammates to open up and talk about themselves even in the best of circumstances can be challenging. And, sometimes, external circumstances not only make life hard to talk about but difficult to simply live. That’s precisely what happened to me when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. 

I recently underwent a personal transformation and was searching for ways to help my teammates feel confident in their workspace while the world around us became unpredictable. As they came to me with problems and questions, I realized my experiences and knowledge might be the information they sought that could help them through their challenges. 

We explored the Wheel of Life and determined their strengths, weaknesses, and goals. Participants could form a clear picture of where they wanted to be in a few years and understand how to get there with this exercise. 

As a result, the Susco Individual Development Plan, or IDP, was born. Implementing it at a corporate level would prove to be a valuable asset to all teammates and the company structure as a whole. It wasn’t long before we witnessed exciting results among participants, such as health improvements like excess weight loss, anxiety relief, and improvements in personal relationships. 

IDPs are a tool for growth. When used correctly, they benefit a person’s personal and corporate lives. Let’s go over what an IDP is, how it works, and the important elements to know before you get started on your own. 

IDP – A blueprint for success 

IDPs are blueprints for success. They are action plans that help take you from where you are to where you want to be, personally and professionally. 

Creating an IDP starts with declaring your legacy statement and assessing your satisfaction level using the Wheel of Life, a simple tool to help you visualize contentedness levels in all areas of life at once. 

The real action starts when you begin vision setting, where you deep dive into every pertinent area of life to flesh out a visual depiction of what achieving your goals looks like – and then get to work.

At Susco, we constantly seek to pair teammates with work that pushes their career goals and hobbies, interests, and personal aspirations whenever possible to promote a maximum satisfaction in life. 

Understanding the fundamentals of these valuable development tools helps you get the most out of the experience. 

Key aspects of your IDP

While all aspects of your IDP will move you closer to your goals, some are especially vital for growth and creative development. Clarify your view on these aspects to get the most out of your IDP.

Setting vision

One of the exercises we do at Susco is to describe best- and worst-case scenarios for the future to help keep us motivated and on track. 

Visualization is a powerful weapon that you can employ to your benefit. When you lack motivation or begin to doubt yourself, your best and worst predictions for the future can motivate you to keep pushing on.

Core values

Taking some time to uncover your core values is an act of self-love. Core values are the guiding principles you use to make decisions in your life. Naming and claiming them helps define your life course, fortify your purpose, and clarify your vision.

Identify problem areas

One of the most critical steps you will take in the journey of self-improvement is defining the areas that need the most improvement. Often, you find that you need more help in some areas than you initially assumed. You may also find that you aren’t as competent in some areas as you thought. 

Identifying these problem areas is crucial to growth, showing you where to start your journey and pointing you in the right direction toward self-improvement. 

Declare achievable goals

You can’t arrive at your destination if you don’t know where you’re going. You’ll just wander around aimlessly, stopping anywhere that catches your eye. 

The same thing applies to life – you must have a goal to shoot for, or you’ll always have a vague feeling of emptiness and dissatisfaction. 

Track your progress

Seeing where you started and how far you’ve come is always inspiring. Continuous self-assessment and improvement are essential to a practical, effective IDP. Set new, achievable goals to challenge yourself as you learn and develop your abilities. 

Look at your growth as a life-long task; there will always be areas to expand and enhance in your professional and personal life.

Conquering these significant elements of your IDP puts you on the road to success. What you discover in the process will help propel you into a lucrative future. 

Starting a journey of self-enrichment is an exciting time. Change is on the horizon, and life will look much different at this time next year. These crucial steps will determine the course of your life for the coming years, so make sure you answer honestly. And be prepared for the profound inner work required to come to some of the answers you’ll need to reach your goals.

Starting your IDP is a big step toward a fabulous future

I am a huge proponent of personal transformation and how it can change the direction of your life, from home life to romance and work. Check out my Medium, Twitter, and LinkedIn pages to see what personal transformation can accomplish firsthand and learn more about what it can do for you. 

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