The past few days have been “blah” for me. I try to remain optimistic despite my sarcoidosis, but sometimes the stuff of life just creeps in. Once things like worry, self-doubt, and skepticism take over, it’s often difficult to see past them.
Whenever I find myself feeling this way, I’m reminded of a saying I heard long ago. It goes something like this: We all should be on a perpetual road to self-improvement in our lives, regardless of our circumstances.
It seems that once we place more focus on self-improvement through personal development than on our current situation, life begins to look brighter again. As it turns out, September is Self Improvement Month, so it’s a perfect time to take a closer look at how you can be the best possible version of yourself.
Self-improvement can take place on a number of levels, including emotionally, spiritually, physically, and financially. Ongoing improvement and personal development are necessary for increasing and maintaining self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-image. Increased quality of life and health, stronger relationships, and a better opinion of oneself are a few benefits of ongoing personal development.
From conversations with healthcare providers and my own research, I discovered that the need to build healthy self-esteem stems from childhood. Yet, there are other times in life when feelings of self-worth may be low. Examples include:
- After a loss (e.g., a job, business, or relationship)
- At a crossroad in life (e.g., retirement and empty nest syndrome)
- When facing the challenges of chronic health conditions (I have firsthand experience with this one.)
Regardless of where you are in life, there are plenty of steps you can take toward self-improvement. Here are a few:
- Take a class: Learn an art form, such as painting or photography.
- Start an exercise routine: Check out tai chi, a gentle activity that can be done in a group or alone.
- Learn a new language: Books, tapes, and classes (both online and in person) are available to assist you in this endeavor.
- Take up a new hobby: Try knitting or woodworking, for example. Finished projects make great gifts for those on your holiday list.
- Join a new group: Find a club with individuals who share your interests.
- Volunteer your time: Consider an activity like reading to the blind or working with animals.
Self-improvement doesn’t have to be costly or grandiose. The focus is on doing something to change your life and to increase your feelings of self-worth.
As with many things in life, the keys to self-improvement include patience, persistence, and perseverance. Don’t forget to give yourself time to make a new activity part of your lifestyle, and be prepared to stay the course, despite setbacks.
Regardless of how you choose to implement your personal development plan, September is a great month to get started. Take just one step, one day at a time, to become the best you possible.
Note: Sarcoidosis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Sarcoidosis News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to sarcoidosis.