5 Free Online Courses for Personal & Professional Development

Do you ever find yourself evaluating where you are with personal & professional development?

I do, and typically from time to time I'm sure we find ourselves thinking about our habits, goals, experiences, failures, and successes. We evaluate ourselves with where we are and how we would like to be.

As a Millennial, I truly believe that one's learning process never ends until his or her time on this side of life does. We don't stop figuring out how to communicate with others at the age of 30 as we've become "master communicators"; we don't stop budgeting our finances because we've reached invulnerability by the age of 50; and, we don't become "perfect people" by the age of 70 because of wisdom.

No, and even at the age of twenty-four, I find myself learning from those both older and younger than myself quite often. And one key to learning and growing personally is making yourself available to it - having an open mind. 

A quote by Zig Ziglar that I saw on Twitter caught my eye because of the two different acronyms:

Fear - "Forget Everything And Run" or "Face Everything And Rise"

Fear - "Forget Everything And Run" or "Face Everything And Rise"

And we choose either in this life when we're faced with challenges or disappointments. Maybe you communicate well with family members, but you're not a great conversationalist when around those you're not familiar with. Or maybe you allow procrastination to easily grip your mind when you get bored and find yourself with a larger bill than you can afford. 

But wherever you find yourself in thinking about your experiences, challenges, failures, or successes, it's great to consider avenues for growth because there's always opportunity while you're here.

And today, we've put together a list of 5 courses that you could take online for free for personal & professional development. (*If you're short on time, try watching the videos for at least 5-10 minutes per day to complete the course.)

1. Productivity Habits That Stick: Using Time Theming

Founder of Productivityist and the creator of this course, Mark Vardy, introduces some strategies in this course to help with creating productivity habits that actually stay. He mentions using "time theming" which sounds like an excellent strategy if you tend to find yourself bouncing from one activity to another and would perhaps want more connection between your tasks & responsibilities.

For instance, let's say that you plan to set aside Mondays for handling management duties like going through emails or responding to calls, and you plan to set aside Tuesdays for creative work like coming up with new course content or looking at ways that you can improve your services. Check out this course if you want to build productivity habits that aren't here for just one week and gone the next.

2. Self-Confidence: 40-Minute Confidence & Self Esteem Guide

Having taught over 60,000 students and received Udemy's Innovation Award, in this course Jimmy Naraine seeks to help anyone desiring to build his or her self-confidence. Maybe you're the person who tends to avoid business gatherings or networking opportunities because you don't feel that you'll be a great communicator. Or maybe you dread getting up in front of a large group of students on a weekly basis because you don't know what question you're going to be asked and how you're going to handle it. Don't worry because you can learn to be more confident in yourself.

In this course, Jimmy looks at defeating negative self-talk, dealing with the fear or rejection, how to show you're confident through body language, and more topics on self-confidence building.

3. Communicate Ideas Through Story

Being able share ideas through storytelling is powerful. When you're able to help a client or student grasp a concept through a scenario or relatable story, then you've found a way to connect with them where they are. In this class, Alyssa Demirjian looks at how stories can work well in presenting ideas, 7 parts of great stories, and 3 stages for creating your own narrative. 

This class would be great for service providers who communicate with clients on a regular basis like counselors, therapists, coaches, or community group organizers. Instructors and tutors could also benefit by being better able to connect with students prior to delving into course materials. 

4. Email Marketing Essentials: Writing Effective Emails

Kate Kiefer Lee's "Email Marketing Essentials: Writing Effective Emails" Skillshare course

Kate Kiefer Lee's "Email Marketing Essentials: Writing Effective Emails" Skillshare course

In a recent post, we talked about email fluffing (don't raise your hand if you're guilty). But packing too much information in an email will likely cause readers to either skim bits and pieces or avoid reading the email and saving it for later. 

Being able to write clear, concise, and effective emails that reflect your brand's personality is important. In this class, Kate Kiefer Lee of MailChimp talks about some principles for Internet writing, best practices for email writing, and shares editing tips before sending the email on its way.

No need to be an excellent writer for this course, but just have your business' goals in mind and an understanding of your brand's persona. With these email tips, you can even use them in your marketing emails sent out to clients through our Back Office.

5. How to Create a Website Without Writing Code

Want a new website but don't know how to code or have the time to learn and build one? Jake Jorgovan in this course will walk you through how to set up your own Squarespace website where you're not focused on coding if you desire and can focus on design.

In another section of the course, he also takes you through his process of designing and setting up a website from scratch - so if you've ever wanted to see how to build one from scratch, he goes through this as well.

If you're taking appointments online with us, you could also embed your appointment scheduler on your website or add a Book Now button so that clients can easily navigate to your offerings and set up a meeting with one of your staff members.

We hope that either of these classes will be helpful for your personal or professional development & be sure to share them with a friend. Let us know if you enjoyed this post and for now, happy growing!