The secret to being the smartest person in the room is simple: never stop learning. Grow yourself, educate yourself, develop yourself so much so that you are always doing something that you don’t know how to do. This is personal development in a nutshell: Consistently assessing your current skills and qualities, creating goals to grow your skills, then achieving those goals through investing in yourself and constantly evaluating your progress.
By investing in yourself and developing your skills more, you not only become a more intriguing and interesting person, you send the message to the world that says “I am powerful and important enough to myself and am going to give myself the dedicated energy and time to grow and evolve into a better me.” The problem I see today in the personal development world is that women don’t have a clear picture of where they need to develop more skills and knowledge, and WHY they need to. I myself have been guilty of taking courses, classes, and buying books to develop my knowledge more in one field to only find out a bit later that I never clearly defined why (my favorite word y’all) I wanted to develop myself and what the end result should look like.
While I am all for expanding my general knowledge, and encourage others, and myself to find one “just for fun” topic to invest and grow in (for me currently, it is learning more about our constellations and astrophysics- something that will keep me quite busy until, well, forever) not clearly laying out where you need to grow and why you need to grow there can lead to a lot of wasted time, money, and effort.
To effectively grow as a person you need to self assess your current skills and knowledge with where you want to/need to be in order to achieve your goals (of course, the step before this is to actually, ya know, write down and find your true goals and passions) and then create what I and my clients call a “gap analysis” to identify where the gaps are so you can fill them.
For those folks who know where their gaps are and where they need to grow, or are searching for more “just for fun” areas of opportunity, I wanted to gather together for y’all three categories worth of my favorite resources, broken down into three categories (Podcasts, Books, and Social Media Account).
The resources below are some of my favorite resources and businesses that help shape me into a better person, and a better CEO. Some of the folks behind these resources were so great, and encompassed more than one of my categories/parameters that I could list them a million times and that still wouldn’t be enough of a shout out for them, but I kept my list as non-repeated as possible in order to make room for a broader range of my resources.
Leadership Skills Personal Development
- Bossed Up!
- Perfect podcast for those in a 9 to 5 who are looking at developing better leadership skills & handling “career conundrums”.
- First, Break All the Rules by Jim Harter
- I cannot speak enough high volumes about this book! It is full of amazing knowledge and insights on how to be a great leader- from how to treat/talk to your employees, interviewing for the right candidate, and how to find your areas of improvement. Get this book. Now. Even if you’re not in a 9 to 5 I’ve found these tips and information transcend office walls.
- Politics of Promotion by Bonnie Marcus
- Bonnie dives right into discussing women and office politics and goes over why ‘just doing a good job’ is not enough for your career. She also offers amazing tools on how to navigate and improve your office politics approach and how to succeed in the office politics realm without being ‘slimy’ about it.
- The Speed of Trust by Stephen M. R. Covey
- Admittedly, I haven’t read this book yet, but I took a two-day course on this book and all of it’s contents and I love how Covey breaks down all of the different types of trust, how you can fix and build trust, and why it is the #1 item to creating a positive culture.
- Emilie Aries
- Emilie is the amazing boss behind the Bossed Up Podcast and Bossed Up in general- go follow her because she is an amazing woman and has some of the best career development advice! I’ve learned so much from her and her Bossed Up Bootcamp that has been invaluable in helping me and that I’ve happily passed on to others who need help.
- Nikki delivers unapologetic badass feminism and leadership tips all over her business and her social media. I love being inspired and listening to what she has to say in the arena that I work in myself and care so deeply about.
Business-Related Personal Development
- The Big Leap
- While Kat has taken a break from recording for this podcast (she said she would be back soon!) I love reviewing old episodes to tidbits of business- in office and entrepreneurial- advice and general development as a badass CEO.
- Happy Thoughts Show (FB Live, not a pod, but should be!)
- I can’t tell you how much I’ve cried watching this show. Happy and sad tears aside, this show focuses greatly on being a better person in general, growing your business/presence, and generating more of your own “happy magic”.
- Goal Digger Podcast
- If you haven’t heard of Jenna Kutcher before, I have a question for you- how is that rock you’ve been living under? I love that Jenna gives out amazing advice on her podcast about being a better entrepreneur and business advice- I don’t want to give too much away, but if you own your own business or want to know how to make a better, more relatable and engaging, presence- tune in.
- LITerally Podcast
- For those who are looking to become an entrepreneur in the future and want to know the ups and downs of owning your own business and launching to success, I highly recommend this podcast with business coach Lacey Sites.
- Getting Noticed by Lindsay Teague Moreno
- Lindsay’s book is mostly focused on social media presence for business owners, however, after reading her book (At least) five times I keep finding more and more general development tips on being a less shitty, more honest, and better person. She touches on owning and sharing your shit and how it can build better relationships. Even if you aren’t interested in growing your IG following, I still recommend picking this up for her honest talk and advice.
- Feminist Fight Club by Jessica Bennett
- Just gonna leave it at this, if you are a woman who works, you need this book. If you work with women, you need this book.
- My Fab Finance
- Let me be real (like I haven’t been already). I am kinda sucky with money. My money story is a huge stoyr of worry, panic, and spending money because I am so afraid I’ll never have money again, so I spend it while I have it… and then I don’t have any more money. Tonya is great at dishing out money advice and guiding you through owning and changing your money story.
- Ashley Beels
- Ashley is one of my many business mentors and generally a great human. She aims at helping entrepreneurs out in establishing and running their business, so if you need help in clarifying your business vision and needing a business coach- give her a hallaaaaaaa.
- Lindsay Teague Moreno
- Yes I technically repeated a resource AGAIN (it’s my site and I’ll do what I want 😉 ) but Lindsay is effing hilarious and I wish she would adopt me (is that creepy? probably creepy, sorry). She is hilarious, relatable, has amazing advice for entrepreneurs, and I basically buy everything she sells because it is quality content and works so well in making me a better CEO.
General Education/Current Events Personal Development
- NPR’s Hidden Brain
- NPR’s Hidden Brain goes through a deep dive of various topics. I love tuning in whenever I have a free hour or so to learn more about a random topic just for fun.
- NPR’s Daily Political Podcast
- I’m a political junkie, but I do not have the time (or emotional willpower) to handle listening to all the news sources every day to stay informed. This pod does a great job at keeping listeners up to date.
- Stuff You Missed In History Class
- Another pod that I listen to for my ‘just for fun’ development. I’ve fallen in love with history all over again the past few years, and these ladies provide great commentary and insight into events you may have never heard of.
- Heavens on Earth by Michael Shermer
- I’m actually about to start re-reading this book after putting it down this past summer, but I love what I’ve read so far!
- Yes We (Still) Can by Dan Pfeiffer
- If you miss Obama and want to understand more about how the White House works (well, did work) and understand his 8 years in office, read this book!
- Astrophysics For People In a Hurry by Neil Degrasse Tyson
- I already have a mad brain crush on NTD, and I REALLY want to learn as much as I can about space in general, so this easy to read book is great for gaining a base knowledge of a “for fun” topic.
- National Geographic
- It’s Nat Geo, just follow them. You know why they’re great.
- Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls
- If you want to keep up with amazing girls/women doing amazing things and learning more about them- follow this profile! I love seeing stories that may not hit the major news and learning more about them.
- Vox News Source
- Another great news source to follow! They have daily breakdowns and quick insight into news events.
After checking out these go-to, tried and true, well loved resources, share below if you enjoyed them and share your favorite resources below!