Do You Work On Yourself With Purpose?

You cannot grow by accident. You can only grow on purpose

You will have heard the term “develop yourself” before. People you know or who you work with have probably said that you need to develop yourself in some area. But, what does “develop yourself” actually mean?

It means, WORK ON YOURSELF WITH PURPOSE. It took me a while to figure out that you cannot develop or work on yourself accidentally, it has to be with purpose.

Have a think of where you are in your career and life today. How did you get there? Did you plan to be where you are or did it just kind of happen?


The reason I ask these questions is because to “work on yourself with purpose” and to grow, we need a plan of action. That doesn’t mean create a plan and then stick it in the drawer.

1. What Is Your Plan Of Action?

It means create a plan that we must be extremely disciplined in acting on. If we don’t work to a plan, then within the next 5 years, you will more than likely be exactly where you are now. Or, you might be somewhere else, and who knows where that will be?

When I’ve told the story previously about my company paying for me to go to university, before that I didn’t really have a plan for growth.

But, my engineering director believed in me and wouldn’t let me go to university unless I had a plan of action for the next 5 years. So, with help from other team members I put a plan together and stuck to it rigorously.

When I started taking action on my plan, there were a lot of doors that opened for me. I had a 4 year degree to work on part time. I joined an engineering graduate scheme where I would do placements to gain more experience.

I went on courses to help me gain more qualifications, they would help me in my current and future roles in the industry. I started reading personal development books, including leadership books almost every day.

Working on myself with purpose really did help me attract things into my life too. I was able to do things that I never thought I would ever do.

If you were to do the same, then your boss and the other bosses in your organisation will notice this. They will see that you are working on yourself with purpose. They will start to realise that you are changing from an average team member to an excellent team member.

They will see that you are becoming a leader within your team. They will start to talk to each other about you, and work out ways to utilise your new skills and attitude for the better. So, expect more responsibility even if you don’t ask for it.

2. Are You Acting On Your Plan?

The opportunities will start to come to you, and the reason for this is because you are acting on your plan. Not because you have created a plan and put it in the drawer.

Obviously, the plan will adjust and be changed from time to time, but don’t worry about that. What is important is that you are constantly working on the plan, and on yourself with purpose. You do this by acting on your plan. If something happens at a time when you didn’t expect it, don’t worry, it has happened. Just keep focussed.

For example, let’s assume that you are now at a level of excellence, and you are exactly where you need to be according to your personal growth plan.

The next steps in your plan is to move into a promotion within the company and that you need to be computer literate for the role. However, at the moment you don’t have the skills that are required for the job.

So, you are not fully prepared to apply for the role when it becomes available in the future. It is highly likely that someone else will be computer literate and has what is required to do the job you want. This is because you have not added computer skills to your plan.

If you only start working on your computer skills when you are “required to”, e.g. for a job, then you are not working on yourself with purpose. If you know that at some stage you are going to need to be computer literate for the future roles that you want, then you need to work on those skills with purpose.

3. How Are You Preparing Your Plan?

You need to be working on yourself much sooner. This way you will be fully prepared before you are “required to”. Otherwise you are just being hopeful.

Being hopeful is not preparation. But, you need to be hopeful to prepare

Preparation within your plan is part of practicing your leadership skills as a team member. One of the leadership principles that I practice is to plan, and then act on the plan. If others see you do this, then they will start to follow in your footsteps and develop their own plans. This is you leading by example.

Another principle that we must practice when working on ourselves with purpose is sacrifice. I struggled with sacrifice for many years, in fact it is the leadership principle that I still need to work hardest on.

With your plan, you have a vision for the future. That could be for the next 5 years or longer. To make that vision a reality, you need to make some sacrifices. In order for you to make those sacrifices you need to believe very strongly in your vision, and have the desire to make it a reality.

If you don’t make the sacrifices required to make your vision a reality, then you will stay exactly where you are. Or, you might end up somewhere else, wherever that may be.

An example of sacrifice is giving up part of your social life to help your future. Are you willing to do that?

So, if you choose to work on your computer skills with purpose, you will be fully prepared for the roles you want in the future that require those skills. An example of this would be to enroll in computer skills courses, shadow a person who has these skills or, read books on the subject.

4. Avoid The Excuses With Daily Goals

What you must never do is find an excuse of why you don’t have the skills that you need. When it comes to your plan, there are no such things as excuses or blame. You are the only person that controls your plan, so you are the only person who can make it work or not.

How many excuses do you make a day?

I work on myself with purpose every single day, and you can too.

How I do this is to have one daily goal that I want to work on with purpose. I then choose the most important things that are required every single day to reach my daily goal, and do them until I reach the goal.

The goal doesn’t have to be huge, but it does need to be important so that will keep you focussed. By focussing on working on yourself and your plan with purpose is how you develop.


Once you have reached your daily goal, you must then develop your goal for the next day and figure out what you need to do to reach that goal. Please ensure that this is not a “to do” list, it is a daily action plan that is designed for you to work on yourself with purpose.

An example of one of my daily action plans is to:

  • Teach at least one person about leadership
  • Share my leadership quotes on social media
  • Write about my day and how I led my people
  • Read part of a leadership book or blog

What are you going to do today, so that tomorrow you won’t have to?

I welcome hearing how this post has influenced the way you think, the way you lead, or the results you have achieved because of what you’ve learned in it. Please feel free to share your thoughts with me by commenting below.

Check out my other articles by Clicking HERE

All the best,

Tom (Lead, Grow, Influence)

18 thoughts on “Do You Work On Yourself With Purpose?

  1. Thanks for this article. I really needed someone to challenge me. I will keep your advice especially when it comes to working on myself.
    I would like also to start and read some books on leadership. Could you recommend a good one?
    For making a plan, which time frame do you think is the best — 5 years, 3 years? Thanks, Andy

    1. Hi Andy,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Books that I would recommend are: “Permission to screw up” by Kristen Hadeed, “Leaders Eat Last” by Simon sinek, “Sometime You Win Sometimes You Learn” by John Maxwell. There are loads more but these would be a good start.

      I plan for 5 years, but I break that plan up into 1 year stints, then break that year up into 2 month sections. Breaking your goals up is the best way to achieve them.

      Thanks again for your questions and comment.

      All the best,


  2. Thanks for sharing this thoughtful post about self-care. I’m a fan of personal development and practice a rule of five every day. It’s something I learn and it simply comes down to doing five things each day that will help you grow and maintain health, wealth, and happiness in your life. This was a great read. Keep on delivering great work.

    1. Hi Ivan,

      Thanks for your comment.

      I love the rule of 5. I do exactly the same thing. Great minds think alike.

      I will do my best to keep up with these articles and I am so pleased that you found them valuable.

      All the best,


  3. A great. I read personal developments constantly and that has helped me become a better person in everything that I do.
    I like the part where you say you must grow on purpose because that is how anyone can change the direction of their future easily.
    I used to be a sports coach and I hated excuses so I know how excuses can hold people back.

    1. Hey Thabo,

      Thanks for your comment and I’m really pleased that you found the post valuable.

      Keep up the learning on personal development and working on yourself with purpose. You are right, it is the “with purpose” that separates the people who succeed to the the people who quit.

      Being a sports coach you will know exactly what “working on yourself with purpose means.”

      All the best to you,


  4. Great Article, reading your post made me realize that there are many different ways when it comes to working on myself. Most of us got a tendency of always ‘following the pack’, but your article shows that you as an individual can grow and maintain happiness in your life. I really enjoyed reading your article.

    1. Hey Herbert,

      Thanks for your comment and I am so happy you enjoyed the post.

      “Following the pack” is what most people do. But, if you want to be true to yourself and honest with yourself then you need to follow your own path.

      I started blogging about 5 years ago talking about internet marketing. I bought into lots of packages that gave me the material to blog about. But I had never actually did it for myself. It’s took me this long to realise I was being dishonest with myself.

      Leadership is my real passion and I know I can help a lot of people with it. So happy I am helping you.

      All the best and keep up your great work.


  5. Wow! I love this page. If I ever need a boost of confidence or any direction this is the place to go. I’ll be sure to check back often and learn more! These skills can benefit so many aspects of life. Thanks again!

    1. Hi Jamie,

      Thank you so much for your comment. Really pleased that you sound the post valuable.

      I would love you to revisit and check out my other posts and my videos. If you ever need any help or anything then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

      All the best,


  6. Hi Tom,
    I thought your article was great. I can tell you’ve worked very hard on yourself, and you have a great education behind you.
    The plan you created for yourself was effective because because you took ACTION, You will attract what you think about, and planning will keep your desires on your mind, therefore you will attract your goals like a magnet. Then doors will open and opportunities will show for which one needs to prepare for. I will fallow your advice and work on improving myself . Right now I need to improve on computers skills. thank you Tom.

    1. Hi Lydia,

      Thank you for your comment, and I am pleased to hear that you are working on yourself too.

      I need to improve my computer skills too.

      Taking action on your plan is most important. Do not have a plan and stick it in the drawer, it will be a waste of time otherwise.

      Keep going and don’t give up.

      All the best,


  7. Hi Tom,
    This is such a great article and I love reading it.
    I agree that working on ourselves requires determination and discipline.
    And in developing our skills, we soon reach the point where we are ready to take action and make our goals a reality.
    However, the only limitation to what a person accomplishes is the level of intensity of his desire.
    Keep writing good articles. I will surely revisit your site for more good read. Thanks.

    1. Hi Cinderella,

      Thank you for your comment. Really happy you found my post valuable.

      Discipline is so difficult to master, I don’t think anyone can master it. But, we need to have as much discipline and determination as we can to reach our goals. Perseverance is one of my values, and I bank on it every day.

      I will keep writing these articles, and I hope you will revisit in the future.

      All the best,


  8. Hi Tom

    I loved the article. How would you go about getting someone to start taking action when all they do is say they are going to do something but nothing happens?

    1. Hi Azle,

      Thank you for your comment and question.

      You need to understand why the person is not doing what they are saying. Ask them open questions like: “Why did you not do as you said?”, and then keep digging. Use their answers to prompt your next question, and when you get to the root cause of why, work together to ensure that their behaviour so that they start taking action. changes.

      If you need any further help with this then let me know.

      All the best,


  9. I think that we should always work on ourselves, it never stops. Every day we can become a better person than we were yesterday, and who were yesterday is the only person we should ever compare ourselves to.

    I often hear excuses. I used to make excuses when I was younger, but I learned not to do that anymore; well, I try not to.
    I love the quote; “What are you going to do today, so that tomorrow you won’t have to?” That’s something I could write on a post-it and tape to my cupboard which is already full with motivational words on post-its 🙂
    Great post! If we all stopped making excuses and continued working on ourselves, we could get so much more done.

    1. Hi Christine,

      Thank you for your comment. I’m glad that you found this a great post.

      Working on ourselves every single day is so important. If we don’t then we are not making consistent steps towards our potential, our dreams and our goals. Excuses is what we make when we want to give up. We cannot make excuses, we must make opportunities to learn and keep going.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,


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