Advertising
Advertising

8 Important Lessons Everyone Should Keep Learning For Better Life

8 Important Lessons Everyone Should Keep Learning For Better Life

While we all face challenges in life, we are arguably our own worst enemies when it comes to conceiving and pursuing goals. This is because we tend to create boundaries and excuses that limit our ambitions, either due to a fear of failure or a lack of self-belief.

These self-imposed restrictions can be difficult to lift, unless you commit to learning from your mistakes and heeding the meaning of pivotal life lessons. With this approach, you can gradually coach your mind, change your outlook and practice skills that free your mind from inhibitions.

8 Important Life Lessons that we must continually learn for a better life

With this in mind, what are the key lessons that we must continue to learn if we are to enjoy a more fulfilling life? Here are eight of the most important:

1. You are never too old to learn new things

This is arguably the most important life lessons, as we often tell ourselves that we are too old or jaded to accept new challenges. This is a debilitating misconception, however, and one that has been contradicted by a host of famous people throughout history. World renowned fashion designer Vera Lang did not create a garment until she was 39, for example, while the now-deceased Hollywood actor Alan Rickman didn’t land an adult film role until he was 28.

Advertising

The lesson here is simple, as quite simply it is never too late to accept exciting challenges and learn new skills for the better.

2. You can turn mistakes into Positive Learning Experiences

On a similar note, we have already touched on the fact that there is a tendency to avoid difficult challenges because of an innate fear of failure. It was Theodore Roosevelt who opined that “the only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything.” This reaffirms that we must take risks and push ourselves if we are to achieve life goals.

It also underlines the importance of embracing our mistakes, turning them into positive learning exercises and using them to shape our future efforts.

3. You can leave the past and move on

Our innermost fears and insecurities are often linked to our pasts, which subconsciously alter our outlooks and change the ways in which we think about the future. Just as you can learn from mistakes and glean positives from failure, you can also heed lessons from past experiences before leaving them behind and moving on with your life. Of course, this is far easier said than done, but the process of altering your mind-set for the better begins with accepting the things that have happened in the past and leveraging them as a springboard for a brighter future. Arguably one of the most important life lessons that you will ever learn, this prevents failures and hardship from hindering your development over time.

Advertising

4. You can alter your Outlook through the use of Colour

As we can see, our mood and outlook are extremely important in shaping how we think about specific events. They also dictate our feelings from day to day, meaning that those who are already prone to bouts of anxiety or insecurity can suffer from regular fluctuations in mood and attitude. With this in mind, it is important that you tailor your surroundings to drive positive sentiment and create an environment in which you are comfortable and happy.

One way to achieve this is through the use of colour, as alternative shades solicit different moods and emotions. As individuals, there are also cultural, psychological and physical factors that influence how we perceive colours, so understanding these can help us to create living and working environments that bring the best out of our psyches.

5. You can always make a difference in someone’s Life

When you encounter difficult times or find yourself weighed down with insecurity, it is easy to believe that nobody truly cares for you. This is simply not true, however, as we all have friends and loved ones who care a great deal about us and believe in the unique value that we offer as individuals.

It is important to appreciate this, and maintain a sense of perspective when evaluating our lives. After all, we have an unconscious ability to impact on the lives of those who love us, as they tend to share our sadness and sense of loss. If we are able to recognise our own importance and seek out the positives in this, we can make a huge difference in the lives of our friends and family members.

Advertising

6. You are not going to be liked by everyone

Conversely, it is important to recognise that you are not going to have such a positive impact on everyone. In fact, there are some people who will dislike you throughout the course of your life, and this can be extremely distressing for those with insecurities or low-esteem who are desperately keen to please everyone.

You must learn that is OK not to be liked by everyone, however, and that this is an inescapable fact of life. This is a life lesson that can be exceptionally difficult to absorb, but the key is to focus on the individuals who are close to you and learn to appreciate their opinions ahead of others. After all, these people know you better than anyone and offer a far greater gauge of your popularity.

7. You must take responsibility for your own life

This is a tricky one, as blame culture can take hold when we experience hardship or negative events in our lives. This causes us to blame other people and external circumstances for the issues that we have encountered, which just so happens one of the main character traits of those who struggle to cope with the demands of everyday life.

This was evident in the wake of the great recession, when the world’s leading banks were blamed for irresponsible lending. Customers also borrowed more than they could afford to repay, however, and many struggled to take responsibility for their own finances during this time. This is the key to a happy and successful existence, as it creates a more proactive mind-set and enables you to assume greater control over the course that your life will take.

Advertising

8. You can do anything that your mind is able to conceive

If there is one trait that distinguishes positive people, it is an ability to think positively. More specifically, they understand that they are capable of achieving anything that their mind is able to conceive, so long as they are willing to showcase determination, work-ethic and a forward-thinking outlook.

Take the example of Nick Vujicic, for example, who was born with no arms and legs and yet has gone on to become a globally-renowned evangelist and source of inspiration for millions of people across the world. He has achieved this through the power of faith and positive thinking, which has enabled him to absorb his experiences and leverage them for good.

With this type of outlook, you can eliminate the inhibitions and limitations that often close your mind to new and exciting opportunities.

More by this author

10 Reasons A Long-Distance Relationship Will Work 12 iPhone 6 Tricks You Probably Don’t Know But Should We Are Often Confused Empathy With Sympathy but What’s The Difference Actually? To Make Wise Decisions, Ask Yourself These Questions Every Time No Matter What You Say, the First Thing People Pay Attention to Is Only How You Say It

Trending in Communication

1 15 Inspiring Ideas to Boost Your Motivation for Success 2 How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success 3 How to Turn Your Fear of Missing Out into a Joy of Missing Out 4 What Is Resilience and Why Is It Important? 5 Positive Motivation vs Negative Motivation: Which One Is Better?

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

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.

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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.

Advertising

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

Read Next