Accidental or Intentional?

Amar Pandit , CFA , CFP

Amar Pandit

A respected entrepreneur with 25+ years of Experience, Amar Pandit is the Founder of several companies that are making a Happy difference in the lives of people. He is currently the Founder of Happyness Factory, a world-class online investment & goal-based financial planning platform through which he aims to help every Indian family save and invest wisely. He is very passionate about spreading financial literacy and is the author of 4 bestselling books (+ 2 more to release in 2020), 8 Sketch Books, Board Game and 700 + columns.

Do you have a plan for your personal growth?

Most people stumble with this question.

Author and Leadership Expert John C Maxwell stumbled too when he was asked this question by Curt Kampmeier. In his book “15 Invaluable Laws of Growth”, John wrote, “It was a question that changed my life. I fumbled for answers. I listed all my accomplishments from the previous three years. I talked about how hard I worked. I outlined my goals. I explained the things I was doing to reach more people. All of my answers were based on activity, not on improving. Finally, I had to admit it. I had no plan to become better.

The truth is many of us don’t have a clear plan for personal growth.

What about you?

What is your plan to become better?

John wrote some insightful words on growth – “When we are children, our bodies grow automatically. A year goes by, and we become taller, stronger, more capable of doing new things and facing new challenges. I think people carry into adulthood a subconscious belief that mental, spiritual, and emotional growth follows a similar pattern. Time goes by and we simply get better. The problem is that we don’t improve by simply living. We have to be intentional about it.  This brings me to the subject of today’s post – Intentional Personal Growth. Before I get into the post, let me tell you what this intentional personal growth is not about. It isn’t about growing AUM or growing revenue or adding more clients although all of these goals or objectives will be achieved (guaranteedyes you read that right guaranteed) if you focus on intentional personal growth.

James Allen in his book “As a Man Thinketh” wrote People are anxious to improve their circumstances but are unwilling to improve themselves; they therefore remain bound.”

Isn’t this the state we often find ourselves in?

We want to increase our AUM, grow our business, add more clients, increase revenue but we seem to be unwilling to improve ourselves…to invest in ourselves…to invest in things that will help us personally grow. But if you have dreams, goals and aspirations, you must become intentional about personal growth. Because it will change your life and your business. Now that’s a guarantee I am willing to give.

However, we have 2 ready excuses when it comes to trying something new or even when taking a calculated risk. Can you guess these two?

a. I am busy…

b. I will do it later…

These two are what I call growth killers or personal potential killers or our unlived life killers.

John added further, “The sooner you make the transition to becoming intentional about your personal growth, the better it will be for you, because growth compounds and accelerates if you remain intentional about it. Although you will discover as I discovered that this will be a lifetime process. The question you should ask yourself should change from ‘How long will this take?’ to “How far can I go?

I started this growth journey forty years ago, and I still haven’t answered the question. But it will help you set the direction, if not the distance.”

You go far in life by investing in yourself…by becoming the best you can be…

Many in our industry/profession have gone into a comfort zone or what I call as the success trap. They get to Peak 1 and keep cruising there even when it’s taking them into the wrong direction. But if you want to reach your personal potential and come closer to the person you were meant to be, then you must do much more than just cruise along and hope you will learn and grow along the way. Your Life is not about Accidental Growth; it should be about Intentional Growth. We all have been blessed to be a part of this transformational profession/industry. It is our collective responsibility to make a real difference in the lives of people…and rescue people from predatory institutions and people…

Here is a table citing differences between accidental growth and intentional growth.


Source: 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth

Our world is full of people who love to talk. Our industry/profession too is full of them.

They talk about #entrepreneurship, they talk about hacks, tips, and tricks.

People love to talk as if they are experts about very complicated (and often deeply personal) subjects, like how to invest, how to eat, and how to grow your business.

Talk, talk, talk.

Just remember, there’s a difference between talking and doing.

From what I can tell, those two things seem to be inversely related. People who love to talk often shy away when it’s time to do, and people who do a tremendous amount often don’t have time or energy to constantly talk about all they are doing. Or maybe they’re just humble.

It’s easy to go down the social media rabbit hole and convince yourself that you should talk more. But I would gently suggest you resist that urge.

Do what’s important to you, do it to the best of your ability, and do it like nobody’s watching. Let other people talk.

Harvard psychologist Jerome Bruner said, “You are more likely to act yourself into feeling than feel yourself into action.”

What this means is you should act…Whatever it is (that helps you with your personal growth) …Just Do It.