Someone believes that reading spiritual literature already means spiritual development. For someone, doing yoga, meditation psychotechnics, and mantra signing are all forms of spiritual development. Alternatively, positive thinking is to develop spiritually.

If to look through vocabularies, the given definition of the word «personality», one may see many differences in the definition. All of them though contain one common thing.

The word «personality» combines social important qualities (opinions, abilities, needs, interests, moral believes). In that case, a work directed to individual capacities discovery of personality development, for approving oneself or self-realization in society. In addition, this is a factor created by a human.

It proved difficult with spirituality as long as there is no common notion for spirituality. If to go to Wikipedia, spirituality is a complex of spirit manifestation in the world of a human being.

It turns out that spirituality has nothing to do with social realization. And development of spirituality is perception and development of spirit manifestation in the world and within a human, development of self-conscience, search of inner light, taking its beginning in a human to be a spiritual creature primarily through cutting of everything what does not concern spirituality.

Analyzing definitions of «personality» and «spirituality», 8 differences can be found, which we develop within personal qualities, inwardness or ourselves.

The Differences Between Personality and Spirituality

1. Boundaries.

If development of personality is effective realization in the society, it means that boundaries are defined from outside, meaning by a society.

Action comes from stimulus of the environment and this very environment limits them. Personal development is measured and is the material side of a human given.

For example, let’s take the desire to become successful.

Outward boundaries are given (as, for instance – to make 5000 $ a month), at which one may say about a person that s/he is successful in the society.

With spiritual development, the search for one`s inside boundaries, inner conditionals happen, and, as a result of spiritual development, a meeting with true oneself. A spiritual side of a human given.

With spiritual development, there is no strive for becoming somebody or like someone else, which is usually about personal development.

Other questions are asked here (Who am I? Why am I?) in order to understand oneself, one`s limitations, defence mechanisms, one`s personal masks, one`s nature, for searching of one`s source of light despite external circumstances and factors.

2. Path

Personal development involves a goal to strive for.

There is a starting point, and an ending point. Which is why there is a goal suggested and ways to achieve it in personal development.

A path at personal development is the path of achievement.

It is assumed that there is something within us but outside, what limits us and overcoming of this limit will help to achieve what is wanted.

It is easy to understand when it comes to receiving material things but what about a goal, which is non-material? For example, to become happy.

The happiness is inner subjunctive feeling. But when it comes to personal development, this feeling is replaced with material objects, for example, to make a million dollars and become happy, to get married and be happy and so on.

Can what we feel be our goal? It is rather an event and we can do something so this event happens but we are unable to fix it and keep it.

If some goal is suggested you are to strive for, even if that is enlightening you are offered to achieve, it is not a spiritual development but a personal advancement.

Spiritual development comes from a condition that we have everything we need but one needs to find it within oneself. Which is why a spiritual development is always a seeking route, comprehending.

Spirituality, in general, is just another way to live life where nothing is needed to achieve, where everything is already there.

This is not goods to buy. Spiritual development is a comprehension, strong feeling of reality, in which we live in and which is a part of us.

3. Revealing oneself.

There is someone needed apart from you in order to reveal oneself when it comes to personal development.

Acceptance of oneself goes through acceptance us by other people.

It is better to become better, more successful than SOMEONE ELSE. I am not important on my own but if I am important for someone (society, parents, children, etc), my life is meaningful.

One is able to reveal oneself through acceptance of oneself in spiritual development. A human is interested in oneself, is interested in what s/he has.

S/he does not need anyone and nothing from the outside in order to become just the way s/he wants to be, s/he needs neither help, nor approval.

A human knows what s/he wants, what is necessary, there is inner strength, inner knowledge, different illusions concerning oneself disappear.

A human is important for oneself in the first instance, besides he might be more successful socially but at that be happy and satisfied with his life.

4. Attitude to the present and the future

All career growth is based on the image of the future. We do not have something in the present. But if we take some steps, we will have this something.

We are aimed and live for tomorrow when it comes to personal development. The biggest problem about such a lifestyle is the loss of the value in the present, which is why the present is not vainable at personal development.

There are other relations with time when it comes to spiritual development.

The future and the past are not on the front burner anymore, there is the present only and it is the most valuable we have.  

All the attention is given to revealing of each moment of life. There is nothing to achieve, there is already everything, one just has to see it.

5. Guarantees

There is a great need for safety and guarantee in personal development.

Even though we understand that there is no guaranteed future in the constantly changing world, but we really want to keep this illusion.

If you are promised some guarantees, it is personal development for sure. Everything becomes means. And at that freedom becomes a goal.

Freedom without any guarantees, a complete uncertainty about what happens next is what spiritual development is all about.

Everything is taken as an event to reveal. Joy, sadness, betrayal are just events with no estimation, event for revealing, for worrying, for understanding.

6. Perfection

There is always a strive for perfection when it comes to personal development: perfect life, perfect relationships, search for a perfect spouse.

Perfection is needed for feeling of one`s life significance. Which is why such human estimations as higher and lower, good and bad, moral and immoral are widely used.

Society presses with its values and requirements, manages us through a system of appraisal and punishments. Everything is adapted to a perfect model.

There is no division into estimation notions in spiritual development, any action has a sense of its own, a sense to reveal.  There is no perfection but a desire to reveal essence and for that, one is to learn to see the situation in whole and unbiased.

Moreover, everything the most important where we can get everything we need for spiritual development is our routine life.

7. Competition

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There is always competition in personal development. There are always winners and losers.

Perfection, a perfect life is a life of a winner. And the more a human is developed socially, the more chances s/he has to become a winner.

There is no competition in spiritual development.

What to compete about anyways? Accepting oneself automatically leads to accepting others. And where acceptance is, no competition exists, no desire to change somebody.

Dominant is no competition but recognition, acquaintance, experience.

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8. Self-realization

Personal fulfillment can be in the form of self-esteem and self-expression.

If you feel like you need to express yourself, to leave a trace in the history, to show yourself to the world, to prove something, it is the path of a personal development.

A true self-expression begins when a meeting with oneself happened, when a human has the courage to see himself just the way he is and to express it in his life, in his activity, relationships, not to become better, not to leave something after himself, proving nothing but express what you are filled with, to share it.

It is wrong to say that one kind of development is better than the other.

Everyone chooses a path of their own.

A human socially happy and successful will unlikely be able to walk a spiritual development path because he feels good living his life. Spiritual birth cannot happen under prosperity conditions. Simply said, reading of spiritual books cannot change anything in life.

A deflection of conscience is required so the changes happened, which more often than not goes through a strong pain, going through which one feels what s/he never felt before. When we feel that it is important for us not to be important for someone but to care of oneself.

About The Author

Melisa Marzett who is currently writing for is an author of many articles and matter of personal growth let alone spiritual one is important for her, which is why she has decided to explain these two notions in the article above for those who are eager to define what they have and what they still are to obtain.