Skills That Will Serve You for a Lifetime
Skills are a set of abilities that are acquired through experience and exposure. Skills allow you to perform a certain designated task based on the areas of your skills- work skills help you stand out amidst your colleagues at your place of work. For instance, an architect will need to have creative thinking and problem-solving skills since this will help him design construction projects, read blueprints, make presentations and also analyze spatial data.
Furthermore, to make a huge success in the present global economy, you need to understand what skills are and also be able to communicate your skills. The communication is not meant to be its literal meaning, as mentioned earlier, you communicate your skills when you take up actions that show your level of expertise. It is important to note that your everyday success requires continuous improvement, upgrading your life cum learning new skills and strengthening the skills you already possess. Start directing and leading your life through the right path with the best skillset- reading this article is the first step.
Essential Life Skills
Life skills refer to your behaviours and abilities that aid your survival during the challenge and hard curves. Life skills cover the skills that help you handle all life issues; ranging from processing your emotions, identifying your problems and also interacting with others. That being said, life skills can also be said to be any skill that is useful and important in your life. These vary by a person’s culture and way of life. Sometimes life skills can be measured by a person’s age; it is expected of an adult to have more and stronger life skills than a growing person.
Life skills are one essential thing that every employer looks out for when hiring new hands to their organization. One can easily predict the growth and end of companies and organizations that hire people who have little or irrelevant skills; these people bring nothing to the table. Interestingly, everyone has more than two skills; the major task is discovering and building them. Those who discover and strengthen their skills are seen as being matured in the environment; they are perceived to be professionals in what they do, upon the fact that they possess all that is required. Build and develop the best life skills today; they are crucial to management and leadership positions.
Why Certain Skills are Necessary for Every Field of Life
Building all-important skills is a very essential exercise that should be handled with levity. Aside from building a good reputation between yourself and the community, skills also play a very crucial role in developing personal wellness and desired success, it helps build up good habits and aids their long term stability. It is noteworthy that skills are of different kinds and they also fit into diverse spheres of life. However, some skills fit in and are very integral for all fields of life- these are mostly referred to as life skills. These life skills do a lot more beyond what perfecting what you do at home or work; they extend to the unseen parts of your life- like the psychological and emotional aspects of life. Some of these skills include communication skills, creative and critical thinking, resilience and a lot more.
The skills are essential since they:
1) Teaches empathy;
2) Exposes you to differing and diversity;
3) Improves your level of concentration;
4) Helps in problem-solving;
5) Bring about a good relationship between you and other people
Skills that will serve you for a lifetime
Creating a list of beneficial and lifelong skills is very endless due to the diversity and broadness of skillset. However, these skills still need to be looked into since they help transform and develop every individual’s future for the best as they arise from the best things that lie within us. Lifelong skills are more like a lot of the skills we hear of daily. Learning and building on these skills have to do with how we connect with people around us and with the world at large. A lot of times, it also relates to starting and building relationships that last long. Noting that the mastering of lifelong skills helps us live better and happier, we will be discussing ten (and very important) skills that serve long term purposes and are beneficial to everyone – parents, students, educators, employers, and the likes.
Creativity is a very important skill for all professionals. Creative thinking is very relevant to both work and personal life as it offers a lot to anyone in possession of it. People who think creatively are always able to view think from an unusual but plausible perspective. Thinkers are those behind the revolution and development of civilization and the human race entirely since they have introduced solutions to a lot of problems with their thoughts. Creative thinking extends to the ability to think, invent and create something new out of what already exists. The invention mentioned in the previous lines does not have to be scientific inventions, it could be a new method of doing things, a concept, a work of art, a solution to a problem and more countless options.
Since creativity is what drives progress and innovation, then creativity further entails looking at things from a point of view it has never been considered before- this could be attributed to why it is often referred to as thinking outside the box. Some typical examples of creative thinking include:
• Problem Solving;
• Creative Writing;
• Active Listening
• Sales and Marketing
• Graphic Design
Communication and Interpersonal Skill
You might think these two stills imply the same thing; the truth is they are different in some ways. Although different, one cannot use one perfectly without developing the other; the difference between communication and interpersonal skills is further explained below.
Interpersonal skills have to do with the ability of a person to communicate and perfectly relate with his team- while also understanding each person and the capabilities. Embedded in interpersonal skills is the ability to get along and tolerate the ills, weakness, and strength of everyone while still maintaining a professional level of empathy towards the situation of every team member. Know that every person you work with has his/her own needs and feeling, this can only be well discerned and attended to with a comprehensive interpersonal skill.
On the other hand, communication skills cover your ability to take in an idea or set of instructions and pass them across to your audience in a way that delivers the message appropriately. Communication skills help you give clear and comprehensive instructions, communicate ideas to your team and also keep necessary bodies informed of the status of every project you are handling. Good communication skills have been said to be responsible for high self-esteem and confidence.
That being said, it is important to understand that both skills are intertwined and one cannot be replaced for the other. Also, none works perfectly without the other. If you have a good personality but cannot properly pass information across to your teammates, you have failed in one way. Likely, if you can give clear instructions and share comprehensive ideas but your teammates find you proud, rude or cruel; no one will follow your instructions or even find them helpful. The latter is to say that you need to build both skills simultaneously, they are inseparable.
Listening is a communication skill that refers to the ability to adequately receive and subsequently interpret messages through the communication process; the act of listening is very crucial and integral to effective communication. Listening has a very important role to play in organizations and firms which is why employers periodically provide listening skills training for their employees- this is to help them build more on their listening skills. Good listening skills also lead to better customer satisfaction, increment in the sharing of information and well greater productivity with fewer mistakes- which subsequently leads to more innovative and creative works.
One important thing to note is that listening is very different from hearing. Hearing is a physical action that has to do with the sounds that enter your ears. When a person has no problems with the ears, the process happens automatically. Listening, on the other hand, requires a highly concentrated effort and focus with diverse body parts- the process is usually mental and sometimes physical.
The act of resilience entails the ability to move with hardship, adversities, stress and even trauma strikes. Resilience is what allows a person to keep functioning (psychologically and physically) in times of grief, anger, pain and terrible situation. Although, resilience is not about going about it alone or being stoic; de facto, being able to reach out to other people for support and help is a core component of resiliency. Resilience further has to do with adapting to life’s setbacks and misfortune. How do you test your level of resilience? Ask yourself; when something goes wrong or things are not working out well, what do you do? Do you fall apart or bounce back and keep moving? Remember, ‘when the going gets tough, the tough get going’, the ‘tough’ referred to there are the resilient ones.
When you are resilient, you align this with your strength which allows you to rebound from a challenge, job loss, setback, disaster, illness or death of a loved one. Contrarily, when you lack resilience, you dwell on these problems, become overwhelmed, and feel victimized and sorry for yourself. This might even lead you to some unhealthy coping mechanisms like drug use and abuse. While resilience will not make your problems go away, resilience gives you the ability to look past them, explore life, find enjoyment and handle stress perfectly. Resilience also becomes very handy when facing some problems and tough times at work, and you still have to keep working. How do you do this? It is in situations like this that your resilience skills become more useful.
What leaders do is highly selfless and often self-sacrificing. Leaders help others and themselves to achieve and do the right things, build an inspiring vision, set directions and also create something new out of what is already existing. This seems draining and requires lots of sacrifices. Leadership is very exciting, dynamic and inspiring especially when with the right people. While explaining and defining leadership might be some stress as it means diverse things to different people- everyone has their understanding of leadership- one cannot dispute some aspects of leadership as explained below:
• It creates an inspiring vision of the future;
• Motivates and inspires people to engage with the created vision;
• Manages the delivery of the vision;
• Coaches and builds a team, this is to make it more effective at achieving the vision.
Leadership brings the skills required to bring people together and meet up with their individual needs.
Time Management Skill
When you plan and organize how you want to divide your time between certain activities and placing them in order of their relevance, you exhibit your time management skills. Great time management skills allow you to work smarter and get more done in less time- even when the time is very tight and you are working under high pressure. When you fail to manage your time, you get to work harder and cause yourself stress thereby damaging your effectiveness. It is sometimes said that there is not enough time in a day, but why do some people get more done within the same 24 hours will others have nothing to show for it? The simple answer lies in good time management skills!
To get better with managing your time, you need to first make an integral shift in focus from activities to getting results. You should understand that being busy is not the same as being effective; you get productive when you are effective, you only work harder when you are busy. Start by doing what is important not what should be done. It might be sounding less productive that you are taking out some time to learn about time management instead of getting on your work. However, with great time management skills, you get to benefit the following:
• Greater productivity and efficiency;
• A better professional reputation;
• Less stress;
• Increased opportunities for advancement;
• Greater opportunities to achieve important life and career goals.
When you fail to manage your time effectively, you can also get some undesirable results as outlined below:
• Missed deadlines;
• Inefficient workflow;
• Poor work quality;
• Poor professional reputation;
• Stalled career;
• Higher stress levels.
An assertive person is one who can stand up for personal rights, expressing feelings, thoughts, and beliefs appropriately and honestly. When you are assertive, you get to represent your views as well as the views of other people without the breach of human rights. Assertive people know how to fight for their rights positively and calmly without being passively accepting wrong or being aggressive. Assertiveness also entails being able to express your wants, feelings, desires and wishes appropriately. This is an integral interpersonal and persona skill in all your interactions with other people at home and work- understanding that people will always have different views from yours, your response to this difference makes you assertive.
While a lot of people act aggressively and passively from time to time, this way of responding and reacting to situations often shows a lack of self-confidence and how insecure you are. Assertive individuals have learned the most appropriate ways of interacting with others, hence; they make their point without getting themselves or others upset.
Assertive people are usually admired for their skilful communication skills. Their behaviour includes:
• Open-mindedness in expressing their feelings, wishes, and thoughts as well as encouraging others to do the same;
• Listening to other people’s views and giving appropriate responses- whether they agree with those views or not;
• Taking responsibility for their individual life and urging others to do the same;
• Periodic expression of appreciation to others for what they have done or what they are doing;
• Ability to take to their mistakes, apologize and make corrections;
• Maintaining self-control; and
• Placing themselves on an equal scale as with others.
Employability skills refer to the behaviour and set of skills that are integral and required for any kind of job you are seeking. This kind of skill has many names used in referring to it; some of them are work-readiness skills, soft skills, job-readiness skills or foundational skills. Whichever way it is referred, it is all to convey the skills that an employer will look for when you submit your curriculum vitae. Some of these skills include:
• Foundational Skills;
• Interpersonal Skills;
• Communication Skills;
• Problem Solving and Critical Thinking;
• Ethics and Legal Responsibilities;
• Professional Skills;
• Career Development;
• Leadership skills
Furthermore, employability skills allow you to do the following perfectly:
• communicate with coworkers;
• solve problems;
• understand your role within the team;
• make responsible choices;
• take charge of your career;
• Influence how you interact with others;
• Positively affects your job performance and career success;
Anger and Stress Management
Anger is a very perfect and normal human emotion that is supposed to be exhibited once in a while. However, constant anger is what becomes wrong and requiring its management. Anger management can be viewed from two different but related points of view.
Firstly, anger management can be said to be a term used in describing the skills you need to recognize your state of anger or to realize that someone else is angry- or becoming angry- and how to appropriately handle the situation in a very positive way. This does not in any way mean you are trying to suppress or internalize anger; it is best explained as recognizing the signs and triggers of anger and seeking the alternatives and more appropriate ways of expressing feeling.
The other side of anger management is about learning to control your anger by understanding and knowing what made you angry. You can best access this by first learning to manage your emotions; since stress can easily lead to an outburst of anger. When you fail to control and manage your anger and stress, you affect your relationship with others and also put yourself in a bad state of health. You can start controlling your outbursts with the guidelines in subsequent lines.
• Start to understand your anger;
• Know your triggers and signs;
• Learn ways to cool down your temper;
• Find other ways to express your anger;
• Look after yourself;
• Sleep well
Confidence is not a trait that can be learned by a set of rules or by coaching; it is a state of mind to be achieved. Confidence can be improved and boost by training, positive thinking, knowledge and talking to others as well as constant practice and killing fears of all kinds. Confidence is a kind of belief in your abilities and self attributes, this usually comes from acceptance of your mind and body cum feeling of well-being. Undoubtedly, confidence is a highly cherished attribute that a lot of people wish to have; however, only a few people have it in their possession.
The secret about confidence is that it has a lot to do with our upbringing and training from infancy, this can only be changed if we learn how to think about ourselves from others. A lot of lessons we have learned have damaged and built our confidence; you can as well furnish and improve your confidence with the following:
• Planning and preparation;
• Learning, knowledge, and training;
• Positive thought;
• Accept compliments and compliment yourself;
• Be with people of like minds: Confidence is contagious;
• Be assertive;
• Keep calm;
• Avoid arrogance
To live your life to the fullest and utilize your potentials to the maximum, you need to develop and build on relevant and important life skills. You only get to live to the best when you discover your strengths and weaknesses- which are your skills- and add more value to your life.
Culled from: Uche Chidera (March 26th 2020)
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