The road to achieving personal development always involves learning. Somewhere between setting self-development goals and measuring your self-development progress is where the learning has to happen. Reading motivational books is a great way to start, and it’s important to know what self-development looks like at different ages.
Maybe you want to be more organized, more confident, or more productive. Perhaps you want better communication skills or to invest in yourself because your company isn’t. Maybe you just want more inner peace. When it comes to personal or professional self-development, you’re the boss. You get to choose.
But, no matter what you want, it won’t just come to you, that’s the catch. You have to take action, and that action requires learning. Below is a list of free online learning courses that covers all the bases. If you see something that hits home or is calling to you, trust your gut and go for it.
I don’t know about you, but the minute I have to speak in public, I trip over my words, I can’t remember things that I know well, and sometimes I even laugh inappropriately. And I’m not alone. According to most studies, public speaking is the no. 1 fear of most people, fear of death is no. 2. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. With a little practice, you can get better at public speaking.
In this course, you’ll get four hours of instruction on the basics of public speaking. The course is available on streaming video on YouTube.
If you already know the basics of public speaking, but want to fine-tune your skills, this is a great course to take. Available through Coursera’s platform, one of the leaders in online learning, this course is a part of the University of California, Irvine’s Division of Continuing Education. The four-week course covers what to include in a speech, preparing to present, and many other tips for presenting information effectively.
If you’re having trouble achieving your dreams, or even defining them, this course can help you get a clear idea of what you want in life. It covers topics such as how to define your goals, changing the way you think, and how to enjoy the journey. By the end of the course, you’ll have a better idea of where you want to go and how to get there.
We know about the long-term benefits of meditation, and we’ve even got a GR8 guide to meditation to help you choose a style, but we also know some people just can’t get into it. Maybe you’ve tried, but been put off by pushy meditators or you think it’s just too new agey for you. This course does away with all that. You’ll learn how meditation works and how to establish an ongoing meditation practice. The course’s direct and straightforward method gets to the root of meditation and why it is so beneficial. And you get three audio, downloadable meditations to help you get started and build your practice from there.
A big part of achieving your goals is effective communication. This course gives you the tools you need to improve your communication skills and how to use them. You’ll learn two of the most difficult skills: how to develop trust and knowing how and when to apologize. In addition, the course covers active listening and communication in different mediums, such as emails, video conferences, phone calls, and face-to-face conversations. You’ll be able to craft convincing messages and develop essential communication skills for success, both at work and in your personal relationships.
As the first lesson in this course states, smart work habits don’t just happen. But you can learn them. The course covers goal setting, scheduling, prioritization, and delegation to enhance productivity and overcome time management issues. You’ll learn how to recognize barriers to time management and overcome them, keep your sense of perspective, and manage resources effectively. It also covers how to manage expectations and say “No” when appropriate.
Whether you are in marketing, sales, or even in everyday life, persuasion skills can help you communicate effectively and convincingly. This course gives you the skills to master any situation and to dramatically improve your ability to influence people. By learning why people do what they do and what drives them, you’ll have a better understanding of how to motivate them to take action.
Ever been in a stressful situation and envied the lone person who wasn’t freaking out? Everyone experiences stress at some level, it’s a part of life these days. It’s how you deal with it that makes the difference. Specific resilience skills such as relaxation strategies and optimistic thinking that help get you through those situations can be learned. Managing stress can help you bounce back faster after a setback, be more effective in your professional life, and develop stronger relationships.
Budgeting and saving may be your least favorite subject, but it’s arguably one of the most important and practical. And an important part of personal growth. Knowing how to manage your personal finances can be the difference between saving money every month and saving nothing at all. One of the best pieces of advice I ever got was to always pay yourself first. This means savings accounts and retirement funds, no matter what your age. This course teaches you how to manage your money for short- and long-term goals.
And last but not least, dealing with difficult people is a skill we could all have more of. This course explores the secret reasons why people are difficult and how to stop them in their tracks. You’ll learn how to recognize specific types of difficult people and how to control your emotions, and come from a place of power and strength. You’ll also get hidden methods for handling conflict and how to skillfully avoid difficult people.