In this article, I will give you hard-hitting pieces of advice you need to change your life. These are specific things I wish I had known earlier—that I had to learn over the years and now live by.
A word of warning before we begin: they might seem simple, but often it is the simplest things that get waylaid, passed off, or forgotten over time. Don’t confuse simple with easy. The ability to consistently train your mind and focus on committing to the development and implementation of these life skills as an adult is what makes the difference.
Each of these skills can change your life, but I’ve saved the best until last. When you read through them, don’t waste time getting started. The time to act is now. I promise you that if you feel you need to change and aren’t getting the full potential out of your life, you won’t regret making these changes today.
You’ll notice that I am being direct for a reason—because we all need someone to tell us to “wake up,” to get serious about playing the leading role in our own lives and being someone our families can depend on.
In today’s volatile world, I need you to step up, to shine, and to bring your best self every day. I want you to become the person you were born to be and to go after your really big goals and accomplish them.
Let’s get into it.
First, pull out a pen and paper—taking notes is the world-class way of winning, and we need to start right away in training our minds to be elite performers.
Don’t be afraid to do things differently from those around you. You are anything but average. However, being average has a way of creeping in, and the only way to change that is to move against the grain.
This is where you start to find yourself craving new associations, connections, and friendships. If this is happening to you, follow your thoughts and intuition and expand your horizons.
This is your time, now is when the transformation takes place. Here are 8 important life skills for adults to build.
1. Set Your Intentions Daily
If you don’t, life will set them for you. It’s as simple as that. If you don’t pay attention, you will drift, and slowly, quietly, over time, you will slip into poor routines and habits that don’t support who you had the potential to become or where you ultimately want to be.
By setting an intention for the day, you gain clarity over your goals and who you want to become. In essence, you are more likely to live the life you desire if you fix a point to aim at daily and hold yourself accountable to.
I was dubious at first—how could something so obvious make such a big difference?
Well, it has to do with small wins compounded every day. People don’t just get lucky. They put themselves in the path of success because they refuse to be average.
Maybe this speaks to you right now—you refuse to be a product of your environment, an output of your teaching. What’s possible for you is off the charts. Maybe you feel this burning desire inside to do more and contribute fully—if so, welcome.
By becoming a person that sets an intention for the day, you get to stay on track, value your time, and indirectly value yourself more. This is a big deal! Your self-esteem and how you view yourself matter. By loving yourself, you are open to opportunities and connections in a way that only you can make sense of.
This is what you bring to the world—your unique ability to be authentically you and set the direction and course of your own life.
2. Create Energy
As high performers, we must cultivate the ability to create energy, even when we don’t want to. This is so we can be consistent in the pursuit of the attributes and skills we know will aid us in living life more fully. Much like the skill above (setting intentions), being able to do things at times when we’d rather not is what makes the difference.
If you want to stand out—at work, as a leader or a boss, to your family—being able to generate energy in moments when everyone else is flagging, quitting, and giving up is a clear way you can demonstrate your character and commitment to excellence.
On top of this, it allows you to put habits and rituals into full effect and be a role model to others.
You are the girl who goes to the gym when she’d rather stay at home. You are the guy who prepares for the sales meeting and, as a result, has questions that impress the CEO rather than scrolling social media. This is the ultimate separator, the divider—the thing that means you win in business and life.
If you find that you aren’t that motivated, then you either need to raise the reasons why you are doing what you are doing so they are so big that you have no choice or you might need to change what you are doing to something that excites you.
3. Action and Urgency
It’s time to move into the action-taking zone. When a climber looks up at a cliff face, they don’t plot every move beforehand. Instead, they get started and make little adjustments along the way.
It is the same in life when we face big challenges, hurdles, complications—it’s all about getting started.
Those that make moves are the ones who reap the rewards, but it goes further than this. The world is competitive and if you want to be a top performer, you must combine taking action with urgency.
The urgency piece is huge. Sometimes, opportunities come along that are only “once in a decade”-type opportunities and you must be ready, willing, and hungry to pounce on them as soon as they come up.
4. Put a Price on Your Time
Another important life skill for adults to build is knowing the price of their own time. Far too many people do tasks that don’t align with their goals, dreams, and vision while complaining that they aren’t running their own business or their sales figures are lower than they want them to be because of a bad market.
The answer is to stop doing tasks that are below your hourly rate. You must come up with a number for your hourly rate/ This can be a number that’s higher than what you are currently on. It must inspire you. Next, use this hourly rate as a guide to help you understand what tasks to outsource.
Does it make sense for you to walk across town to save $10 on cab fare versus getting to the office early and get a jump on the day?
When you value your time higher, it puts things into perspective and helps you level up to the life you want to be living. If you are building a business, what’s taking your focus? Is it Instagram, cooking, cleaning, paying bills, organizing birthdays? Question everything that you are doing that is below your hourly rate and outsource it (if possible), leaving you free to focus on what actually moves the needle.
5. The Art of Persuasion
Critical to business and life is learning the art of persuasion. This is the ability to be able to get what you want, to read the room, to sell, and to enjoy the process while doing it.
Confidence in the art of persuasion comes from knowing how to influence people, and the way you can influence others is not by trying to convince someone that something is true but rather, make them believe your own beliefs. It is a subtle but mighty distinction.
To persuade someone, they must believe your beliefs about something. This is how salespeople become world-class. They change their focus from trying to get the other person to believe and act from a place of their own belief to inspire others.
This is a skill that will help you in all areas, from business, career, job negotiations, housing, rental, family, team to problem-solving. It impacts a huge array of life areas.
6. Surround Yourself With Your Dream
I love luxury hotels. I am drawn to the abundance and opulence of them. That’s why even if it is just for a day, I make it a priority to go and stay for a night.
When I was struggling to make ends meet—the six credit cards I had were all fully maxed out, the debts were piling up, and the dream I was fighting so hard to keep alive was weighing down on me—I made it my priority to never lose touch with where I was headed: the bigger vision I had a for my life.
I would find a luxury hotel and just go work out of the restaurant when I could only afford a coffee or even the reception. I wanted to be surrounded by my dream life. To me, this was about having an abundance mindset in the midst of the struggle. This is what helped me dial in and stay focused on where I was headed.
If you have a dream or a vision for your life, be conscious of the way you allow yourself to experience it and celebrate your small wins and successes as they occur. Too many people are waiting to celebrate their wins and as a result, the Universe notices, which affects how regularly wins occur.
7. Give and Give Some More
A large part of what makes life worthwhile is giving. If you are in a space of doubts, fears, negativity, and anxiety, the best way to combat this is to focus on what you can give. It doesn’t have to be financial either, this could be as simple as a smile and as deep as listening to a friend who is having a hard time themselves.
The key here is to make giving part of your skillset so that you recognize it as one of the core strategies you have to keep yourself moving forward and making a contribution.
8. Get Clear on Your Identity
Knowing who you are and what you will tolerate in your life is bigger than all of the above. This adult life skill alone will dictate how successful you are, the habits and rituals you set for yourself, and the standards you have for yourself. If you want to raise the bar of your own life, then you might need to start transforming a few areas of your identity.
For example, if you are in sales, make going the extra mile a part of who you are—working the extra hour, getting up earlier, hitting the gym more times in a week, doing an extra rep.
These small shifts have a big effect on your identity. If repeated consistently over time, your identity will change and you will associate yourself with a higher level of success. You may even find yourself drawn to different people, content, and lifestyles.
A Word of Warning
With all of the life skills for adults above that I have outlined, the number one thing you can do for yourself is to actually do what you say you will do for yourself. Keep the commitments that you make. It will help you grow your confidence like nothing else and, as a result, you become more.
That’s why I say commit today but really mean it because the biggest thing you can do is trust yourself—that you will do what you say you will.
Having a trusted relationship with yourself is paramount to making it in life. The more experiences you can collect where you make yourself proud and recognize that within yourself, the higher your level of self-confidence and the more you’ll be able to make an impact on others.
Remember, the time is now to increase the trajectory and velocity of your life. Don’t wait, get started, and iterate along the way.
More Life Skills for Adults
- Stop DREAMING, Start LIVING… Why We Need to Take Action
- 10 Proven Time Management Skills You Should Learn Today
Featured photo credit: bruce mars via unsplash.com