9 Best Personal Development Courses to Grow Your Skills and Mindset

Are you ready to engage in learning and self-improvement? Here's a breakdown of the best personal development courses to level up your life in 2024.

9 Best Personal Development Courses to Grow Your Skills and Mindset

If there's one way I love to spend my free time, it's digging into a good personal development course.

It never ceases to amaze me that if there's any skill you want to learn - anything at all - there's an online course or program that you can enroll in right now to eventually become an expert in that area. 

You can find courses to help you learn the science of persuasion, how to play guitar, how to negotiate your salary, or how to manage stress more effectively. 

In fact, you can even find courses that teach you how to learn, so that your entire personal development journey becomes easier and more enjoyable. 

Here are my top picks for personal development courses - let me know which ones you've taken or would like to take in the comment section below!

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure for more information.

What are the Best Personal Development Courses Online? 

Here are the best personal development courses online to level up your life in 2024: 

1. Dynamic Public Speaking

Dynamic Public Speaking

Would you like to get better at public speaking?

Like most things in life, public speaking is a skill that is mastered through deliberate effort and patience.

If you are nervous about public speaking, but regularly have to do it as part of your job, this four-part program by the University of Washington is for you.

In this course, you will receive the instruction, experience, and practice to develop and deliver compelling presentations.

Based on knowledge in communication, rhetoric and linguistics, the course slowly works up specific skills that you can practice multiple times before putting together a longer speech.

You will learn to: 

  • Increase your confidence and presence as a dynamic speaker
  • Develop delivery techniques for voice, movement, and gesture that engage audiences
  • Prepare effective speeches for various purposes (informative, persuasive, praise), occasions (workplace, special events, etc.), and audiences
  • Master speechwriting techniques for storytelling, argument, style, topic framing, and discussing evidence

Program Syllabus: 

  • Course 1: Introduction to Public Speaking
  • Course 2: Speaking to inform: Discussing complex ideas with clear explanations and dynamic slides
  • Course 3: Speaking to persuade: Motivating audiences with solid arguments and moving language
  • Course 4: Speaking to Inspire: Ceremonial and Motivational Speeches

As you complete this specialization, you will gain experience creating a portfolio of polished speeches that will increase your skills and confidence as a public speaker.​

Key course features: 

Shareable Certificate

  • Earn a Certificate upon completion.

Flexible Schedule

  • Learn online at your own pace.

Beginner Level

  • No prior experience is necessary.

Approx. 2 months to complete

  • Suggested pace: 10 hours per week.

=> Enroll in the Dynamic Public Speaking online course here

2. The Science of Better Sleep

The Science of Better Sleep

We all know that sleep has a profound effect on our mental and emotional health.

But have you ever wondered why?

As a professor of neuroscience and psychology at UC Berkeley and the director of the Center for Human Sleep Science, Matthew Walker is an expert on sleep. 

In this fascinating Masterclass, he illuminates the science behind sleep and teaches you how to increase the quality and quantity of your sleep.

You will learn how to prevent sleep debt, navigate the effects of alcohol and caffeine, and improve your health.

The class also comes with a downloadable guide with tips for getting back to sleep at 3 a.m., foods that hijack your slumber and the differences between early birds and night owls.

Class Syllabus: 

  1. Meet your Instructor 
  2. What is Sleep? 
  3. How Sleep Works 
  4. Night Owl or Morning Lark? 
  5. The Buzz on Alcohol and Caffeine 
  6. Prevent Sleep Debt
  7. Fire Up the Brain 
  8. Sleep Across Our Life Span 
  9. Overnight Therapy
  10. The Absurd Act of Dreaming 
  11. Sleep and the Human Body 
  12. Diet and Sleep 
  13. Sleep to Thrive 
  14. How to Sleep Better
  15. Reclaim Your Sleep

Class Length: 15 video lessons (3 hours 12 minutes)

I highly recommend this class, I learned so much from it and it's one of my favourite personal development classes online!

=> Enroll in the Science of Sleep by Matthew Walker on MasterClass.

3. Super Reading

When was the last time you learned how to read?

Not an English class, or literature class, but a class called “reading”?


For most people, the last time they learned how to read was when they were six or seven years old.


But here’s the irony - has the difficulty and the demand for reading in our lives increased since we were six years old?


Of course.


Yet, most of us still read like six year olds! We have not upgraded our skills.

Super Reading is a highly optimized speed reading methodology that is designed to double your reading and learning speed in just 21 days.

The program is taught by Jim Kwik, one of the world’s top experts in accelerated learning, memory, speed reading, and brain performance.

Over the past two decades, Jim has served as brain coach to billionaires, celebrities, students, professionals, and CEOs looking to improve their processing power and productivity.

In each day of the program you’ll spend just 10 - 20 minutes with Jim, as he guides you through his signature speed reading and neurostimulation techniques - and reverses the undesirable reading methods you were conditioned with as a child.

In the course, you will learn how to:

  • Break through the limiting ‘inner voice’ reading method that has greatly diminished your natural reading speed
  • Apply your accelerated reading and learning speed towards your personal and professional goals
  • Implement memory retention techniques so you can absorb information faster, and retain it to use at a moment’s notice

Overall, this is a great program for anyone who wants to dramatically accelerate their rate of growth and learning.

By the end of the program, Jim guarantees you’ll at least double your reading and learning speed - and be primed to grow and achieve at your fastest possible rate.

There's actually a free 60 Minute Masterclass by Jim Kwik that you can sign up for to experience a sample of the Super Reading program and learn a useful, science-backed 15 Minute speed reading technique.

=> Enroll in Super Reading here.

4. Stress is Optional

Stress is Optional

Panic, anxiety, and stress are paralyzing emotions that can stand in the way of the life you want.

Freeing yourself from the grip of these toxic thoughts and feelings will give you clarity you can use to make better business and life decisions. 

In this CreativeLive course, stress expert Dr. Cynthia Ackrill shares powerful tools to help you relieve stress and develop greater emotional resilience.

What you will learn: 

  • How to manage life’s ups and downs using insights from stress management research and positive psychology
  • How to develop a framework for evaluating your stress levels and your behavioral responses
  • How to identify cues you can use to get back on course whenever you feel overwhelmed

Key course features:

  • 32 Video lessons in HD
  • 15h 2m of class content
  • Exclusive bonus content
  • Lifetime access, anywhere, anytime
  • Streaming and offline access on desktop and mobile
  • Offline sync with iPhone & iPad apps
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee

This personal development course will help gain a greater understanding of the physiological impact of stress, so you can minimize the disruption it has on your body and life.

=> Enroll in the Stress is Optional online course here. 

5. Successful Negotiation: Essential Strategies and Skills

Successful Negotiation: Essential Strategies and Skills

Almost a million people have already enrolled in this popular negotiation course offered by the University of Michigan. 

Why study negotiaton? 

We all negotiate on a daily basis. On a personal level, we negotiate with friends, family, landlords, car sellers and employers, among others.

Negotiation is also the key to business success. No business can survive without profitable contracts. Within a company, negotiation skills can lead to your career advancement. 

In this course, you’ll learn about and practice the elements of a successful negotiation.

Course Syllabus:

  • Module 1: Welcome to Successful Negotiation!
  • Module 2: Prepare: Plan Your Negotiation Strategy
  • Module 3: Negotiate: Use Key Tactics for Success
  • Module 4: Close: Create a Contract
  • Module 5: Perform and Evaluate: The End Game
  • Module 6: Practice Your Negotiation Skills
  • Module 7: Final Examination 

Key course features: 

Flexible Schedule

  • Learn online at your own pace.

Approx. 17 hours to complete

  • 3 weeks at 5 hours a week.

Beginner level

  • No previous experience necessary.

=> Enroll in the Successful Negotiation online course here.

6. How to Make Money

How to Make Money

Like his books, this popular CreativeLive course by Ramit Sethi is both immensely educational and entertaining. 

If you're not already familiar with him, Ramit Sethi is the bestselling author of I Will Teach You to Be Rich, and an entrepreneur who has taught over a million students how to better manage their finances.

In How to Make Money, Ramit shares his proven techniques for transforming your financial outlook.

What you will learn in this course: 

  • How to reach your personal financial goals through learning how to spend, save, and invest your money
  • How to turn your passions into extra income on the side
  • How to find and land your dream job (or gig) and how to negotiate your salary once you do

Key course features: 

  • 40 Video lessons in HD
  • 17h 4m of class content
  • Exclusive bonus content
  • Lifetime access, anywhere, anytime
  • Streaming and offline access on desktop and mobile
  • Offline sync with iPhone & iPad apps
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee

Even if you feel pretty comfortable financially, I still recommend this course. It takes an usual approach to most money advice. In fact, as Ramit says in the course, it's actually a bit like a psychology course disguised as a personal finance course. 

=> Enroll in the How to Make Money online course here

7. Career Success Specialization

Career Success Specialization

This series of courses by the University of California (Irvine) will help you develop essential skills needed to improve your employability and advancement in today’s dynamic workforce.

The course concludes with a Capstone project that will give you the opportunity to apply the methods and techniques you learned in the series of courses to a personal experience, giving you a way to communicate your value to potential employers. 

You’ll focus your communication, management, negotiation, problem solving, business writing, time management, finance, entrepreneurship, and project management skills into a single project that demonstrates your career readiness.

Program Syllabus:

  • Course 1: Project Management: The Basics for Success
  • Course 2: Work Smarter, Not Harder: Time Management for Personal & Professional Productivity
  • Course 3: Finance for Non-Financial Professionals
  • Course 4: Communication in the 21st Century Workplace
  • Course 5: High-Impact Business Writing
  • Course 6: The Art of Negotiation
  • Course 7: Fundamentals of Management
  • Course 8: Effective Problem-Solving and Decision-Making
  • Course 9: Essentials of Entrepreneurship: Thinking & Action
  • Course 10: Career Success Project

Key course features:

Shareable Certificate

  • Earn a Certificate upon completion.

Flexible Schedule

  • Learn online at your own pace.

Beginner Level

  • No prior experience required.

Approx. 2 months to complete

  • Suggested 10 hours/week.

This course is one of the best personal development courses you'll find that specifically focuses on career and professional development. 

=> Enroll in the Career Success Specialization course online here

8. Coach Training Accelerator

Coach Training Accelerator

Have you ever thought of sharing your passion for personal development with others? This popular life coaching certification course can help you do so. 

Coach Training Alliance (CTA) is a global coaching organization that has trained and certified over 10,000 coaches from 45 countries. 

Their Coach Training Accelerator is an online self-study program that provides you with the training and tools you need to establish a solid, sustainable coaching practice.

This course will teach you how to:

  • Learn from the mistakes and successes of others
  • Discover shortcuts that take years off your learning curve
  • Accelerate your career in coaching and your ability to earn a significant income
  • Experience several insights about your own personal growth that will enhance your abilities as coach
  • Develop a niche and learn how to showcase your skills and services

Key course features: 

  • 20 Lesson Online Graduate Level Program
  • 5 Multimedia Training Modules
  • 3 Bonus Self-Paced Interactive Courses 
  • Become a Coach in 20 Weeks

=> Learn more about the Coach Training Accelerator course here

9. Foundations of Positive Psychology

Foundations of Positive Psychology

Positive Psychology is about strategies and tools that enable individuals and organizations to thrive.

In this 5-course specialization by the University of Pennsylvania, you will discover key theories and research in the field of positive psychology as well as opportunities for application.

The goal is for you to be able to apply the concepts in your personal and professional life.

Program Syllabus: 

  • Course 1: Positive Psychology: Martin E. P. Seligman’s Visionary Science
  • Course 2: Positive Psychology: Applications and Interventions
  • Course 3: Positive Psychology: Character, Grit and Research Methods
  • Course 4: Positive Psychology: Resilience Skills
  • Course 5: Positive Psychology Specialization Project: Design Your Life for Well-being

Key course features:

Shareable Certificate

  • Earn a Certificate upon completion.

Flexible Schedule

  • Learn online at your own pace.

Beginner Level

  • This course is appropriate for all learners.

Approx. 2 months to complete

  • Suggested 10 hours/week.

=> Enroll in the Foundations of Positive Psychology online course here

Frequently Asked Questions about Personal Development Courses 

Questions about Personal Development Courses. E.g. What course should I take first?

What is Personal Development?

Personal development refers to a broad category of activities that improve awareness and identity, develop your talents and employability, aid in the realization of your dreams, and ultimately improve the quality of your life. 

People who actively seek to improve themselves often find that they are able to successfully push past limiting beliefs and reach difficult goals.

Rather than waiting for life to hand you knowledge, opportunity and success on a silver platter (which it won’t), you can take control of your life through personal development. 

You can read my full post on the definition of personal development here.

How Can Personal Development Courses Help Me Reach My Goals?

Personal development courses can help you reach your goals by guiding you through a step-by-step program, taught by experts in your desired subject area. 

In life, you can learn from your own mistakes (which often takes longer), or you can follow the trusted advice of qualified individuals and people who've already done what you're trying to do (much quicker!).

The best personal development training courses will shorten your learning curve and give you an opportunity to put what you learn into practice. 

Additionally, the flexibility of online learning is particularly well-suited to building personal development skills, since you can select individual courses that match your goals, instead of pursuing a full degree program. 

Which Personal Development Course Should I Take First?

The course(s) you choose to take first will completely depend on learning goals and personal situation. Many people choose to take courses that align with their ideal career path or personal interests. 

Of all the courses above, I recommend taking the Super Reading course first, because it will help you improve your learning and retention skills, which will be useful when taking any other course!

Final Thoughts

Thanks for reading this article on the best personal development courses to enroll in online this year.

I hope the above courses will help give you some direction on areas you can focus on to experience greater success in your life over the next few months. 

Personal development is a lifelong journey and an exciting one. As you build on the knowledge and skills provided in these courses, you'll likely look back at where you started and be amazed at how far you've come!

All the best,

Roli Edema

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