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These 5 Skills Are Actually Better Off Being Learned Online

These 5 Skills Are Actually Better Off Being Learned Online

Today, we use the Internet for pretty much everything: research, communicating, writing – so why should learning be any different? If you’re afraid that online education is inferior to face-to-face education, don’t be. In 2011, Babson found that online education is considered as good or better by more than 85% of US students.

The following 5 skills will add immeasurable value to your repertoire, all accessible from the comfort of your home.

1. Coding

In the lost interview with Steve Jobs, Apple’s co-founder was quoted saying “I think everyone in this country should learn how to program a computer because it teaches you to think.”

Coding is a lot like applied science and math because it teaches you a repetitious method to solving problems and testing out new ideas. Coding isn’t especially easy to learn but that’s what makes it such an invaluable skill.

There are plenty of ways to learn coding online, one of the more popular options is here. There are several different courses offered such as JavaScript, Web Fundamentals, PHP, Ruby,  jQuery, Python, and APIs. Within every lesson is an explanation of the fundamental code and instructions.

Another panel provides an opportunity for you to try your hand at coding while also confirming that you’re doing it correctly. With hints and warnings of potential errors, it feels as though you are being guided through the learning experience with a personal tutor.

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2. Piano

I know what you’re thinking: how can learning piano online be any better than sitting down and learning in front of an actual piano? Well, there are several benefits. First, it’s much cheaper. Typically, a 1-hour class ranges from $50 to $250 depending on the teacher, this can range between $2,400 to $12,000 per year! In contrast, compare this to an App or platform such as this one, which is only $59.95 per year.

In addition, online piano classes help teach students to play their favorite songs, learn to play by ear, improvise, and even create their own music – doesn’t that sound better than a piano teacher breathing down your neck telling you that you missed a beat? In fact, the piano online education market has doubled since 2006, according to Google Trends’ search query volume statistics.

3. Language

There are thousands of reasons why we should learn foreign languages. In addition to impressing that cute girl at the bar, learning a new language will boost your confidence, increase your brain power, improve your decision making skills, and open your mind to empathizing with and discovering new cultures. It also makes traveling easier and more enjoyable – imagine being able to ask a Parisian which way the Arc de Triomf is in a perfect French accent.

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If you learn it online instead of sitting in a classroom at nights, you’ll be able to pick up the language much quicker. There are several reasons for this. First, unfortunately, classes typically move at the speed of the slowest learner. There are more levels than just beginner, intermediate, and advanced, but most classes don’t cater to those in between the main three.

Second, language fluency and conversation cannot be taught in a classroom, or anywhere besides a one-on-one environment where you are forced to adapt to a normal conversational speed. In the meantime, download an app or watch some YouTube videos. It will enable you to learn on your own time, which will go quicker than you think.

4. Excel

Microsoft Excel is something everyone should learn. It’s not only for brilliant financial analysts – it’s also good for budgeting personal finance, organizing client lists, planning social gatherings, assessing students, and pretty much anything that requires numbers. In truth, any person, from a stay-at-home parent to a small business owner, can benefit from learning Excel. It’d help you save massive amounts of time automating complex formulas and organizing information.

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In seconds, you can calculate a quick budget, see which students are performing better than others, contemplate how many more miles you need to run this week to reach your dream weight, etc. It’s much more intuitive than most people give it credit for – a quick online course can teach you the basics and help you learn from there. I’m sure, you’ll be making spreadsheets in no time.

5. Photography

Photographs serve an important purpose in our lives. By taking photos we have the ability to preserve a memory for eternity and share our world and past with the people we love. Learning a little bit of photography is a skill that everyone can benefit from.

Photography is also a form of creative expression. They say a photo is worth one thousand words so the images you capture tell a story. By taking an online photography class, you have the opportunity to learn new skills from the comfort of your home than can be an asset to both your personal and professional life.

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Whether you’re interested in photojournalism, street photography or just capturing family photos, every moment is an opportunity to tell a story.

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Yoav Vilner

CEO at Ranky

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Published on April 16, 2019

How Self Care Can Help You Live Your Best Life

How Self Care Can Help You Live Your Best Life

When was the last time you did something for yourself?

Whether it was deciding to treat yourself with a little something or travel for some R&R, how often do you practice self-care?

Well, as good as above sounds, there’s a common misconception that many of us have about self-care: that it’s only about indulgence and enjoyment.

However, self-care goes far beyond indulgence. It’s actually about respecting your mind and body, understanding its limits, and being able to take care of every part of yourself, in a holistic way.

And, you really don’t have to go to extreme measures or do anything specific–like meditating or following a plant based diet–in order to practice self-care. You just have to make sure that what you’re doing is in your best interests.

So how can you make that happen?

Below are a few proven methods that will help you become a better version of you. Follow through with these regularly and you’ll be well on your way to living your very best life.

Listen to Yourself

The bulk of self-care is knowing yourself.

This means knowing your body’s limitations, and being in tune with your feelings, emotions and thoughts. So it’s important, then, to know who you are and what you want to do in life, in order to truly say that you know yourself. 

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What is your purpose?

Have you ever thought about this question?

Your purpose doesn’t have to remain the same throughout your life. What you found a purpose in at age 19 would likely be different at age 49.

In your current situation, think about the different roles that you have – as a working professional, a spouse, a partner, a parent, etc.

Do you feel like you are fulfilling your purpose through any of these roles?

All you have to do is ensure that what you’re chasing is meaningful to you; this will bring focus and motivation as you strive to achieve your goals.

If you have your purpose defined, then that’s awesome! You know what drives you and why.

But, if you don’t feel like you have a purpose nailed down, it’s good to start by asking why.

For example, why are you working in your particular job or industry? If the reason is vague or unclear, then your motivational energy will be the same. In which case, you may find yourself not having a direction for where you’re headed in life.

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If you’d like to learn more about finding your purpose, then I recommend you check out this article:

How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up

Seek Out Continuous Education

Now, this may seem less common when you think of self-care, but lifelong learning is incredibly useful and an important component of taking care of yourself.

It’s Super Practical

Lifelong learning is extremely practical these days and does not require as much effort as it may have in the past. Long gone are the days when you could only find information on something by visiting a library. In this day of the internet, anything you can imagine is at your fingertips.

You don’t need to physically go to a learning institution to learn. You can watch Youtube videos to learn new skills, take online courses to earn a degree, and scroll through an endless amount of articles, books and journals from reputable news and informative sites.

When you’re constantly pushing yourself to learn and take up new things, your mental health also improves. Research shows that an active and engaged mind is responsible for diminishing age-related memory loss and improves overall cognitive abilities.

Your Confidence Will Skyrocket

You’ll also have improved self worth as it teaches you to step outside of your comfort zone, which will undoubtedly improve your confidence.

You’ll also connect better with others by expanding your knowledge base. Learning exposes you to a multitude of new ideas and perspectives that you may have otherwise never considered. This also increases your adaptability. Whether it’s at work or just wanting to adapt to society, your peers, and loved ones, life long learning prepares you to take on new challenges.

You’ll Be More Desired in the Job Market

Another obvious reason for continuous education, is that your employability will also increase.

With the ever changing economy, and huge influences from technology, social media, science etc., job descriptions today are moving targets. Assignments and roles change so quickly in response to changing business demands, it becomes a Herculean task to keep a job description database current.

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In years past, stability was a characteristic of the world of work. Procedures, information, jobs, and organizations were established and provided continuity. Education was completed in the first 14 to 22 years of one’s life, followed by a long career occasionally punctuated by short-term job training.

Today, however, jobs, companies, and technology are disappearing and being created simultaneously. To remain current and maintain a competitive advantage in the human capital marketplace, an individual is challenged to continually learn.

People return to school at every age to enrich their skills and knowledge for their current positions. Some even prepare themselves for new jobs or career changes, moving them forward into new opportunities and technology.

We can be assured that we will be challenged to continue to learn new tasks and information throughout our lives. Successful careers belong to flexible, curious learners who are prepared for opportunities because they know themselves and where they make their best contribution. As Peter Drucker, the father of modern management stated,

“Knowledge is choice.”

Lifelong learning also increases social awareness and perspective. To genuinely understand and empathize with others, increase social awareness, and foster strong interpersonal relationships, it’s important to seek out new perspectives. Enhancing the skills that positively impact emotional intelligence can bring even greater happiness and success, both personally and at work; and, this is all part of self-care.

Improve Your Habits (Both at Work and at Home)

Now, the last piece of advice I want to introduce to your self-care regimen, is to improve your habits.

Habits define who you are, and are built up over time. You are what you eat is a great example of this. If you make it a habit to eat foods that nourish your body, rather than make your body feel bad, then you will be much healthier overall.

Good Habits Allow You to Reach Your Goals

Since habits dictate your days and nights, such as waking up every morning to get to work before a certain time, or brushing your teeth before bedtime every night, they play a major role in whether we do or do not reach our goals.

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When you form habits that allow you to progress towards your goals, you’re automatically living a purposeful day, everyday.

Habits Make Your Time a Priority

How do you spend your free time? Do you opt to lounge on the couch watching Netflix passively, or do you engage in activities that support your purpose in life?

It’s natural to waste a lot of time during the day, but fostering good habits will make you set a pattern for how you spend your time and give you the choice of what you choose to spend your time on. By improving your habits, you’ll find that you can be a LOT more productive. When you create good habits, you become more efficient with your time and a lot less is wasted.

This in essence creates an overall positive influence on your life, allowing you to treat your mind and body well, which is why improving your habits are so important to self-care.

Your Well Being Comes First

We live in such a fast-paced society, where we are often so caught up in our work, families, maintaining our social lives, our studies and everything in between. It’s an understatement to say that life can get a little overwhelming at times.

If you’ve ever watched the safety video onboard a plane, you’ll know that they always ask for a parent or adult to put on the safety mask first, before tending to the child. This may sound selfish, but the fact is that if you truly want to ensure the child’s safety, then your safety needs to come first so that you can protect and care for the child without complications from your end.

The same goes for self-care. We need to ensure that our well being is priority, so that we can be the best for the people around us.

Listening to yourself, practicing lifelong learning and improving your habits are steps that you can take to ensure you’re constantly in the best state of mind, alongside the indulgence and rest that you reward yourself with.

Featured photo credit: Photo by Raychan on Unsplash via unsplash.com

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