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Top 6 Skills Worth Investing In Your Life & Career

Top 6 Skills Worth Investing In Your Life & Career

Do you know enough skills? There are thousands of skills that you can develop in your lifetime, and the more you develop, the better quality of life you can lead. With that said, some skills are more valuable than others, and in this article we’re going to narrow down the top 7 skills worth investing in your life and career.

1. Personal finance

If you can’t take care of your personal finance, everything else you want to achieve can fall apart, because you don’t have the basic needs met. Developing the skill to manage your own budget, expenses, and savings is what will allow you to take care of your family, pay your bills, and invest in the resources that will keep you expanding.

Money isn’t the only thing that will make you happy in life but it’s the base layer that will act as a supporting pillar to the things you want to achieve in your life.

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To get started, check out Mint.com to mange your budget and savings, Investopedia University to learn about basis finance terminology and concepts, and personal finance books like I Will Teach You To Be Rich or Wealthy Barber.

 
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    2. Health

    Taking care of your physical health is becoming more mainstream today, but taking care of your mental health is another. For many people, health is a second or third priority in their lives, when it should be the number one. Making sure your mind and body are at the top of their game is not only going to help you enjoy the success you achieve, but it’s what will accelerate your success.

    Health is what gives you energy and the focus to think clearly and push through the inevitable tough times that will come your way. You can get started by booking a membership at your local gym to work on your physical body, and check out apps like Headspace, which will help guide you to establish a meditation habit to take care of your mind.

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      3. Mentorship

      A mentor can change the direction and trajectory of your life and career in a heartbeat. Finding the people that have already been where you want to go is invaluable, and I have personally travelled across the country to have face to face time with the right mentors.

      Whether your goal is to build a business, land your dream job, or simply finding out in what direction you should go, investing in finding a mentor is essential. To be clear, this doesn’t have to be a personal relationship you develop with someone, as some mentors are simply too busy to work with anyone one-on-one. A mentor can be a biography of your hero, podcast show, online program, or a book that allows you to learn how they think, and the decisions they have made along their career.

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        4. Books

        This is where books are incredibly useful. If you don’t have direct access to a mentor, you can always invest in books and find yourself having several mentors that you can access on-demand. Books are much more valuable than articles you’ll find online, because most people spend years researching, writing, and editing their books, and there’s just much more thought that goes into the material. It’s one of the biggest return on investments you can have on $10-15.

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        There are great platforms like Scribd, which is Netlix for books, where you can access an unlimited number of books for as little as $8.99 per month. Last time I checked, they have hundreds of thousands of books in their content library, and even if you’re reading one book a month, it’s worth the membership cost.

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          5. Language learning

          With the rising globalization, we’re entering a multicultural and multilingual world. Everything from the media, business, economy, and entertainment is being distributed all around the world, and knowing how to speak just one or two languages is not enough.

          Whenever we do anything, whether it’s starting a business, looking for jobs, or even where to live, we should always be taking a global approach instead of limiting ourselves to our local city. The easiest way to expand your growth and thinking is to learn a new language, because there are additional benefits that come with language learning, including cultural knowledge, cognitive improvements, and communication skills.

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          The biggest reason why most people never learn a language is lack of time. Check out language learning websites like Rype, which is specifically built for busy professionals. It offers unlimited private language lessons online (Spanish right now), that allows you to learn at any time of the day, and any day of the week for as little as 30 minutes per session.

          Or if you want to dip your feet into the pool, Duolingo is a good option to start off with. Whichever option you choose, make sure to use solutions that accommodate your busy schedule, rather than interrupting it.

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            6. Life or Business Coach

            A coach is different from a mentor in several ways. Most mentors won’t have the time to dedicate to helping you achieve your goals, because they have their own business, career, and life to take care of. Whereas a coach is normally paid to give 100% of their attention to helping you achieve your goals.

            Another benefit to having a coach is that they’re able to give you an outside perspective, without bias, and discover blindspots that are often very difficult to see when you’re working in the trenches. Hiring a coach for your life or career is no different than a corporation spending a million dollars to hire an outside consultant that will help make them 5 million dollars. The amount you invest in a great coach will give you a return that will pay you back in multiple folds.

            Coaching is not limited to life or career, but it can also be for growing your business, improving your health & fitness, or even learning a new language.

            tony-robbins

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              Last Updated on April 11, 2019

              How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

              How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

              Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

              I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

              I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

              Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

              How Communication Skills Help Your Success

              Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

              Create a Positive Experience

              Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

              When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

              What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

              Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

              As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

              Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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              Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

              Help Leadership Skills

              It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

              Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

              As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

              Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

              If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

              Build Better Teams

              Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

              In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

              If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

              When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

              Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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              How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

              There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

              Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

              1. Listen

              Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

              Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

              People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

              Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

              Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

              2. Know Your Audience

              Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

              Here is a good way to think about it:

              Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

              You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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              3. Minimize

              I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

              He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

              Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

              State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

              The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

              4. Over Communicate

              So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

              What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

              Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

              Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

              Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

              There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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              5. Body Language

              The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

              When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

              In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

              When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

              Conclusion

              Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

              Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

              There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

              Now go communicate your way to success.

              More Resources About Effective Communication

              Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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