The 5 Commandments of Personal Development

Are you drowning under the sea of information on personal development? You wonder what you should really focus on in order to get results?

It is while I was trying to answer that question that I came up with 5 fundamental rules. I believe that these 5 rules are absolutely necessary for personal success.

I called them: “the 5 commandments of personal development”

Here are the 5 commandments

1) You shall not mistake “your reality” for reality

It is easy to get stuck in your current model of reality and feel totally trapped. However, your current model of reality is only one possible model among an infinite number of subjective realities. Your reality is based on your belief system and guess what? If your belief system sucks, your reality is likely to suck too!

Your belief system is the result of the way you consciously and subconsciously interpreted past events and are the result of:

  • What you have heard (from your parents, your friends, your teacher, the media…)
  • What you have experienced (positively or negatively)

Yes, your belief system is an interpretation of realty; it is not reality! It is the result of your past experiences and because it is not reality, it can be changed.

Look at the different areas in your life and ask yourself whether you are satisfied or not in each of them. If you are not, what beliefs do you hold in these areas? Are these beliefs reality or only your “reality”?

2) You shall not let your thoughts define who you are

Here is a simple yet powerful truth that is very often overlooked:

you are not your thoughts!

Did you know that 90{54c12dad2cc2b53ae830e39915b1a3e70288dbcbbeb8bbf8395437c5dc3c512c} or more of the thoughts you had today are the same ones you had yesterday? Surprising? Not really since your thoughts are largely dictated by your belief system or if you prefer: “your subjective reality”.

It is important to realize that thoughts have no power over you and cannot define you unless you allow them to. As the spiritual teacher Mooji beautifully says “No thought is self-employed” meaning that none of your thoughts have the power to shape your reality unless you identify with them.

Thoughts may appear extremely real and powerful when you are under their control. However, they are in fact transient, weak, intangible and disconnected from reality.

For instance, after a breakup, they can easily trick you into believing that you will never be happy again. Is that true?

In your daily life observe how your mood can drastically changes in a matter of seconds and you will start seeing through the illusion.

3) You shall be clear on the meaning of success

Success is a common theme in the media but it is seldom defined in clear terms. What do people mean when they talk about success?

Most articles we can read online are based on the false assumption that there is only one definition of success. It is as if we all had the same definition of success and there was no need to define the word.

It is crucial for you to be clear on your personal definition of success. If you don’t, you are likely to buy into someone else definition of success and pursue the wrong goals.

What is your own definition of success?

Try completing the following sentence: for me success is…

4) You shall be the creator of your life

You can either be the victim, or the creator of your life. It is very easy to become trapped in a victim mentality and I certainly do that myself in certain areas of my life.

Your ego just loves to play the victim. Emotionally speaking, it is so comfortable and it gives you a perfect excuse not to face the truth.

However, to become the creator of your life you must take responsibility for absolutely everything that happens to you. Each time you fail to do so, you actually give your power away to people or situation. After all, if you believe you are not responsible, then what can you possibly do about a situation?

Stop giving your power away and start taking responsibility for your attitude, emotions, time, happiness, relationships, careers and everything else you can think of.


5) You shall set goals

As a creator of your life it is also your responsibility to set goals.

Do you have clear written goals you are working every day?

Unfortunately, too few people are clear on what they want and set a clear strategy to get there. When you set goals you stop letting your environment determine how your life is going to unfold. Instead you start using your environment to get where you want to be.

Setting goals inspires you, empowers you, increases your self-esteem, improves your health and allows you to make effective use of the power of your subconscious mind.

Wouldn’t it be better to work on making your goals happen rather than to work on making other people’s goals happen? Well, If you don’t have goals, it is probably what is going to happen to you!

So, do you have clear goals?

Here is a special bonus for you

Why not go one step further in your personal development journey? If you like this article you will greatly benefit from my free e-book. You can download it below:

The 5 Commandments of Personal Development

Thibaut Meurisse is the founder of Obsessed with improvement, he dedicates his life to finding the best possible ways to durably transform both his life and the lives of others. Check out his free e-book “The 5 Commandments of Personal Development” or order his new book “Goal Setting: The Ultimate Guide To Achieving Goals That Truly Excite You” now on Amazon.


Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.

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