Now that the inspirational sparkle of the new year has worn off, you may be falling back into your old routines and habits. Statistically, you probably are. One way to jolt yourself out of a run is to engage in learning new skills. Last year I’ve had the privilege to do research, interview and report on some of today’s most successful people and they all have one thing in common. They are continually learning. Whether it’s reading books, going to seminars, or taking courses, continuously expanding your mind is a fundamental key to success.
If you didn’t love school, don’t worry. Today’s online options have come so far, you can listen on your commute, download everything to your smartphone, or take an entire class via watching short digestible online videos for free.
1. Programming for Everybody
You’ve probably seen or heard the headlines claiming “everybody needs to learn how to code.” If you agree, this University of Michigan course from Coursera is a great option.
2. How To Make iPhone Apps
This course from Udemy teaches how to finally create that app idea you have. If you are very computer savvy, take five hours and you’ll be ready to submit your first app to the App Store by the end of the day.
3. Introduction to Graphic Design
We live in a visual world. Just like some people argue that everyone should know the basics of coding, others feel we should all learn the basics of good design. This beginner course from Udemy teaches the basic principles of design and the theory behind creating attention-grabbing visuals.
4. Beginners Adobe Photoshop
Once you learn the basics of great design, you’re going to want to start designing! This tutorial for beginners from Adobe KnowHow teaches the fundamentals of a, if not the, vital graphic design program. Also a good course idea for beginning photographers.
5. Internet Marketing for Smart People
If you want to up your marketing game, Copyblogger is a great resource. This class teaches you how to systematically implement effective marketing campaigns. You also get instant access to 14 value-packed ebooks on SEO, copywriting, keywords and more.
6. Diploma in Social Media Marketing
This course from ALISON goes beyond how to use the platforms and teaches the ins and outs of affiliate marketing, email marketing, blogging, social platforms and increasing site traffic.
7. Social Media 101
Want a social media overview? This is a two-minute-a-day class from Buffer to teach you the basics of social media. Learn how to use each platform, how to create a tone for your brand, and how to understand analytics.
8. Become a Networking Master
If you’re intimidated by networking events, meetings and conferences, you’re not alone. Progress your career or your business with this course from The Muse which teaches you how to network, communicate and give a clear elevator pitch to anyone and everyone.
9. Introduction to Public Speaking
Public speaking skills can improve your performance in meetings, calls, and of course on the stage. This edX class from the University of Washington will help you become more effective and confident on debating, presenting and persuading.
10. Successful Negotiation: Essential Strategies and Skills
Negotiation is not just essential for business owners crafting contracts. If you want to secure yourself a higher salary, better benefits, or that coveted office with a window, start with this course from the University of Michigan from Coursera.
11. Competitive Strategy
Getting ahead and staying ahead is a science. This more advanced course from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München by Coursera will teach you the basic tools of game theory in order to dissect strategy and gain competitive advantages.
12. How to Finally Start Your Side Project
Many successful businesses started as a side hustle. This class offered by career experts at The Muse will walk you through how to focus and bring your ideas into the world, while still working your 9-to-5.
13. How to Start a Startup
Entrepreneurship is the new black. Stand out from other startups with knowledge on user growth, fundraising, operations, and more. This Stanford lecture by Sam Altman features leaders from successful companies like PayPal, LinkedIn, and Airbnb.
14. 21 Critical Lessons for Entrepreneurs
In the middle of starting your own business? This is a short course from Docstoc CEO Jason Nazar. He teaches rookie entrepreneurs key lessons based on his first-hand experience vetting ideas, raising money from investors, scaling a business, and more.
15. Scaling Operations: Linking Strategy and Execution
If you’re filled with a million ideas but can’t seem to bring any of them to life, check out this course from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University offered by Coursera. It will show you how to correctly build an idea into an actual, stable and scalable operation.
16. The Passive Income Business Plan
If you’ve looked into entrepreneurship, you’ve probably heard of passive income. It sounds too good to be true, is it? This basic introduction to online business from Udemy covers helpful information for entrepreneurs who are considering starting an online business but don’t know how to.
17. Diploma in Project Management
If you want to become a department head, speed up the growth of your business, or simply become more efficient, you need to master project management. This course from ALISON offers an overview of project management methodology, tools, project life cycles and case studies.
18. The Secret Sauce of Great Writing
The more I study success, the more I realize that good writing is everything. No matter which career you’re in, whether you’re writing an email, a presentation, a script, or a storyboard. This course from Udemy teaches you to enhance your business writing.
19. Writing on Contemporary Issues
Want to get your op-ed featured on NYTimes.com? This course is an introduction from MIT on writing attention-grabbing prose for online audience with a clear and unique personal voice.
20. Chinese Language: Learn Basic Mandarin
This is another skill that is often recommended, especially if you want to climb up the ladder of international business. This beginner course from edX is free, but you can add a MandarinX Verified Certificate for $50.
21. Spanish I
Like Mandarin, many recommend adding Spanish to your resume. This is a beginner course from MIT that teaches Spanish through a quality drama-filled story.
22. Sports Psychology – The Winning Mindset
If you want to win in business, your career, or just in life, think like a winning athlete. Dr Cliff Mallet offers practical strategies in this Olympic.org course that will ensure you approach your next goal with the right mindset.
23. The Science of Happiness
Who doesn’t want to be happier? The first class from University of California, Berkeley, offered by edX, will teach you science-based principles and practices for a happy and more fulfilling life.
24. Practical Ethics
If you ever look around at the world today and think “I don’t know what I believe anymore” this course will help you figure out just that. Examine your ethical beliefs with this Princeton class offered by Coursera.
25. Guided Meditations
There’s a reason many successful people meditate and practice mindfulness. Figure out those reasons in this introductory class from UCLA, taught by Diana Winston.
Featured photo credit: GaudiLab via shutterstock.com