In my perspective, personal mastery as an art that not only encompasses both skills and competence but also goes beyond this scope to integrate aspects of personal growth, flexibility, and overall progression. It entails embarking on a journey that is aimed at continuous improvement and perceiving things from a whole new angle (Senge, 1990). Furthermore, personal mastery as a discipline constitutes a solid framework that is steered by principles such as belief, purpose, and commitment as well as practices that enable one to formulate a personal vision. It is from here that one is able to view the world objectively. Personal mastery is all about understanding how you approach things, how you think and have some sense of clarity, purpose, and direction in life. Moreover, taking the appropriate steps towards development and learning is part of the process of evolving oneself and moving forward towards living and fostering a satisfying and more fulfilling life (Powell, 2007).
On the other hand, lifelong learning is the voluntary, self-directed and continuous quest to acquire formal or informal knowledge and skills for either personal reasons or to advance career skills. According to Schraeder, Freeman and Durham (2007), lifelong learning has myriad advantages to the learner which include financial benefits, satisfaction, convenience and growth. For instance, lifelong learners have a tendency to be promoted faster than others since they have enhanced knowledge and are dedicated to theirjobs. Consequently, they get higher incomes because from a financial standpoint, they are assets to the company.Evidently, lifelong learning not only enhances personal development but also employability and self-sustainability (Schraeder, Freeman & Durham, 2007).
To keep up with theories, current trends and practices in my area of specialization, I will attend conferences and networking opportunities. It is important to discuss industrial trends with colleagues to get their insight on what they think. Also, going out for conferences and signing up for training is a very easy way to keep up with what is happening in the industry. Secondly, I will read the latest books, magazines, blog posts and industry publications related to my area of specialization. This will allow me to get meaningful insight on what is relevant to my industry from the perspective of an outsider. Moreover, blog posts are a great source of current information and they analyze key statistics and research.
There are numerous opportunities that exist in myarea of specialization in my lifelong learning. For example, research and development is one area that is still being explored and has the potential to grow in the wake of globalization. Technological advancements have catalyzed the research and development (R&D) sector of my career and have made it even simpler to conduct data collection and analysis when doing experiments. Therefore, I will also venture into this field at some point in my life and hopefully conduct projects which will aim at introducing new and fresh ideas.
In conclusion, I plan to get a mentor upon completion of my doctoral program to ensure continuouslygrow and learn professionally. I will look for a professional in my area of specialization to guide me as I navigate through the industry. Also, I will strive to take up new challenges and seize every opportunity that comes my way to get more exposed to the practices of the industry. Exposure is very important since it broadens one’s mind and sets a unique perspective as to what to expect when taking on a new challenge.
Powell, W. E. (2007). The wisdom of looking deeply. Families in Society, 88(1), 3-6.
Schraeder, M., Freeman, W., & Durham, C. (2007). A lexicon for lifelong learning. The Journal for Quality and Participation, 30(4), 31-36.
Senge, P. (1990). The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization. London: Routledge.