How to Create a Personal Development Plan – Template Included

Do you ever feel like you’re spinning your wheels day in and day out? A personal development plan might be exactly what you need.

You are working really hard, but you can’t really see the progress that you hope to.

You expect a lot out of yourself. More than most of the people who surround you, but you’re not sure how to get to that next level.

I know how you feel. I’ve been there.

Before I understood the value of planning my personal development, I felt like I was just kind of wandering aimlessly towards some far out goal.

A personal development plan doesn’t really have to be very elaborate. It’s just creating something for you to follow every day.

Why planning your personal development is important

The phrase “personal development” always sounded really formal to me. It’s a lot easier to think about it as just making a little daily progress.

But to make progress, you really need to know where you’re going. That’s why a personal development plan is important. It helps you to determine what direction you should be headed.

A major part of personal development is determining what you value the most in life. Understanding what drives you is the key to your happiness and success.

What does being great mean to you?

Does it mean having 3 kids who adore you more than anything in the world?

Does it mean being the youngest VP in the history of your company?

Does it mean getting invited to the Boston Marathon?

All 3 of those examples are wonderful goals for anyone to have, but they all rely on making ourselves better, even if it’s just a little bit, every single day.

Each of us have our own unique backgrounds and experiences. Those experiences are what has shaped our world view, and what it means to be great.

You’re the type of person who has aspirations to achieve something that most people aren’t driven enough to achieve. It’s an internal desire to be the best. Planning your future will help you decide what the word “best” really means to you.

By creating your personal development plan, you will actually create the steps needed for yourself to achieve the things that you dream about. No longer will you just be floating from day to day without really knowing why you’re getting out of bed in the morning.

Now, let’s get into the example of a personal development plan

If you are working on your personal development and growth, then a plan will help you stay on track. It is a good way to keep yourself from comparing yourself to others, because it only tracks who you are from one day to the next.

You might be asking yourself, how do I write a personal development plan? Your personal development plan template doesn’t have to be complicated; it really only needs to include 3 sections.

1. What will I do each day to progress in my journey with:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Finances
  • Fun
  • Health
  • Work

2. What will I do this month to progress in my journey with:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Finances
  • Fun
  • Health
  • Work

3. What will I do this year to progress in my journey with:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Finances
  • Fun
  • Health
  • Work

Sound easy enough, right??

You can’t get it wrong

I’m not saying that just to make you feel better. It’s true. Any plan is better than no plan. Your personal development plan will change over time.

The plan is only one part of your personal development. There are so many other things to keep in mind, but your plan is like your guiding light. You look to it when you aren’t sure what to do.

We only have so much time in a day. We can’t do everything that we want to. Your personal development plan will help you determine what is essential in your life.

If you are having a little trouble coming up with ideas to put into your personal development plan template, take a look at these 25 personal development goals and pick the ones that stick out to you as some of your biggest strengths or weaknesses.

Personal development planning guide

If you use google drive, like I do, for your personal development planner, then you will be able to access it from pretty much anywhere. Sometimes it’s easier to walk through an example of a personal development plan using a worksheet.

If google drive isn’t your thing, then I also have a 6 page personal development planning guide that I like to share with people who would like to quickly review what the most important pieces of personal development planning are. You can download a pdf plan below.

Use this guide hand in hand with your own personal development plan template. It’s just a good reminder to keep around for when you are working through your ideas for what will be included in your personal development plan.

Personal development plan ideas

If you haven’t taken a look at my template yet, let me give you some ideas for actions to include in your own self help plan.


I try to text 2 friends every day. It doesn’t have to be some big elaborate text message. I just like to see how they’ve been doing and maybe send them an update on things that are going on in my life. It’s been a great way to keep up with friends who I don’t see every day.


I like to keep things simple, so in my daily finances column I have “stick to budget.” It’s really that simple sometimes.


Every month I try to make it a point to hang out with my nieces and nephews at least once. That means that for my monthly goals for family, I have a reminder for myself to spend some time with them. You might have something similar for your parents, kids, or grandparents.


My goal weight for this year is to stay between 185-190lbs. That is the weight that I’ve found for myself to feel and perform the best.

Health also includes mental health. I try to journal every day and meditate for at least 10 minutes.

Maybe you’ve been wanting to run a 5k or hike up a small mountain. Make it one of your health goals for this year.


I really want to personally help at least 15 people a month on their personal development journeys. I hope that you’re one of those 15 people!

Sometimes I don’t get 15 people, and sometimes I get more. What really matters is that I execute my plan every day, which includes writing an article, sending an email, and/or putting content out on social media.


And finally, for fun, I want to play golf at least once a month. I’m not very good at it, but it’s fun and relaxing.

Taking action is the key to succeeding

If you spend all your time planning, you’ll never actually get anything done.

Yes, a plan is extremely important, that’s why I developed my template and use it every day!

But a plan is just the first step.

Taking action every day is the real “secret” to success.

Emotions and lack of motivation can try to stop us from getting where we want to be.

Turn yourself into the person that you were meant to be by learning how to overcome emotion and taking action to achieve your goals.

Keep your eye on the prize

When you are doing these exercises, remember that it’s for your benefit. Think of all the years that have gone by when you could have been taking action that you didn’t.

You don’t want to let any more time pass you by without making the most of yourself. All of your aspirations depend on you taking action.

For more personal development articles, check out our ultimate guide to personal development.

You have a starting point. Now, jump!

Personal development plan pin

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2 thoughts on “How to Create a Personal Development Plan – Template Included”

  1. I have been looking for a site like this for a few weeks now and I just accidentally stumbled onto here through pinterest which I rarely visit but am so glad I did today. Thank you for the value


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