The downside to self development

Gillian Adams
2 min readAug 21, 2022

We often think that making change is a positive move. Most of the time it is, of course. But have you ever experienced the downside to self development?

Wait, what do you mean?! How come there’s a downside?

Well, if we’ve been feeling stuck or lost for some time, starting to make new changes or routines can suddenly highlight the things we’ve been missing out on. We might notice that we get frustrated or annoyed at ourselves because we’ve spent a while drifting. We might even start to compare ourselves to others, and think we’re falling behind, or not good enough.

Sure, these feelings can be used as motivators, to give us the momentum to move ourselves.

But accepting that they are a common side effect of taking action can help to normalise some of the more negative feelings we might experience too.

If you notice that you’re feeling this way when you start to make any changes or progress, then allow yourself some time to reflect on what’s coming up. But also allow yourself to appreciate that you are changing, and are gradually moving away from that place of ‘stuckness’ or inertia.

Listening to your emotions, and accepting how you are feeling, is all part of the growth process. So, embrace the learning and keep going!

Photo credit: Jon Tyson via



Gillian Adams

Gillian is founder of the “Start A Little Fire” blog and “Sunday Night Motivation” podcast, and is a passionate advocate for personal growth and development.