Published on April 12, 2021

8 Most Important Life Skills For Adults To Build

8 Most Important Life Skills For Adults To Build

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

Featured photo credit: bruce mars via

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Tim Castle

Bestselling Author, Coach and Co-Founder of My Book Habit

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Last Updated on August 11, 2021

10 Best Self-Improvement Classes in 2021

10 Best Self-Improvement Classes in 2021

Even during the midst of a pandemic, self-improvement is still a crucial aspect to our lives today. There are tonnes of articles that you could be reading from our site or from others. However, the articles aren’t able to provide the depth and the growth you need when compared to courses or programs.

So if you are looking to step up your own self-improvement and invest in yourself and the life you want to lead, here are some of the best self-improvement classes to consider.

But before getting to that, here is the criteria that we use to determine these courses. All of these qualities have been present in the best self-improvement classes we could find:

  • Little commitment – All these courses can be done in the comfort of your own home and at your own pace as well. Most of these courses recommend spending a few hours each week on their material.
  • Prestigious – These courses are done by recognizable institutes with good reputation on their education quality.
  • Leverage on skillset – Each of the courses focuses on one area of your life, however it also helps develop other areas of your life at the same time.

1. Lifehack Mastercourses & Free Classes

Lifehack isn’t just a blog but rather a hub with all kinds of resources at people’s disposal. You may already be familiar with our particular workbooks, but we also provide courses of our own.

Firstly, there’s a free course that will guide you to break your procrastination loop and start taking action to get what you want. Ending procrastination is essential to multiplying your time, energy, and the overall quality of your life. Here you can learn more about the free class:

Our second set of courses are the courses where we help you break free of your limitations to become the best version of yourself. These courses aren’t free, but each course goes into extensive detail on everything from motivation, overcoming challenges and staying focused to improving your overall learning capabilities, controlling your emotions and mindset:

2. The Science Of Well-Being

Yale University has been around for over 300 years at this point and one of the most popular classes in that time span is this one: The Science of Well-Being. After all this time, Yale is providing this course to everyone for free.

In this class, Yale Psychology Professor Laurie Santos introduced this class as “Psychology and the Good Life” in spring 2018. The class was designed to help students in navigating anxiety, depression, and stress in their lives. The class at the time was so popular that roughly a quarter of Yale undergraduates enrolled in it that spring.


Going into more detail about this course, this 4-week course is designed to provide a step-by-step process for boosting happiness. The course heavily focuses on positive psychology – what misconceptions we have about happiness and what has been scientifically proven to make us happier.

Enrol in the course here.

3. Learning How To Learn

Another notable course to consider is the Learning How to Learn course. On the platform Coursera, it is one of the most popular and loved courses on the platform with nearly 2 million students enrolled since it’s been there. It’s taught by the distinguished professors Dr. Barbara Oakley and Dr. Terrence Sejnowski.

The premise of the course is what you’d expect, the goal of this course to teach you to learn more. It’ll ultimately lead to you training your brain to effectively process information and learn complicated subjects even. All of this is done through various tools and methods – from stories to goofy animations like surfing zombies, metabolic vampires and an “octopus of attention”.

Enrol in the course here.

4. Mindshift

Another course developed by Dr. Barabara Oakley is this course: Mindshift. If you’re planning to take the course Learning How To Learn, this one builds off of that popular course. Overall, it’s meant to help learners boost their career and life by shifting their mindset to a learning one.

Dr. Oakley firmly believes that any person can train themselves to learn at any stage in life. She believes that from personal experiences but also how this course is designed. Through this course, you learn how to be seeking out mentors to learn from, how to avoid common learning pitfalls, career ruts, and the general ruts in life.

By the end of this 4-week program, you’ll have access to new tools and strategies to face any career challenge and seek better methods to surmount new learning curves.


Enrol in the course here.

5. De-Mystifying Mindfulness

Mindfulness is something that we’ve all been trying to obtain in recent years and people are noticing it. Whether we strive for this for therapy, lifestyle choice, or for other technology, many of us consider this a pastime we do in solitude at this point.

But despite the number of us practicing mindfulness, not many of us fully grasp it. De-Mystifying Mindfulness is a course designed to help people get up to speed with it through various methods. This course gathers information from various disciplines in science, social sciences and humanities to help unlock and understand mindfulness in its various forms.

This is a truly unique course as it’s rooted in experiential learning mixed with evidence base of what mindfulness can do to people. And a conceptual base of what mindfulness might actually be.

Enrol in the course here.

6. Achieving Personal And Professional Success Specialization

The best way to explain what Achieving Personal And Professional Success Specialization is. is that it’s four of the most popular courses taught by Wharton School, the University of Pennsylvania wrapped into one Specialization. Through these four courses, you’ll be able to maximize your potential and be more successful in both personal and professional life. You’ll learn various techniques and exercises that this school teaches.

Going into more detail the four courses consist of these four:

  • Success – learn about defining goals, understand how goals connect to long-term images of yourself.
  • Communication skills – tools to improve communication with others. You’ll also learn to take other people’s perspectives, where trust comes from, and build relationships.
  • Leading the Life you want – skills that allow you to lead in the four domains of life: work, home, community, and private.
  • Influence – how to develop it and become more effective in achieving organizational goals.

Enrol in the course here.


7. Think Again

Reasoning is another important aspect of life. Think Again is all about teaching you how to reason and argue well with people without raising your voice and getting flustered. It’s four short courses that explore the logic behind arguments, how we construct arguments and deconstruct them, how to identify and evaluate arguments, and what makes a good argument.

Specifically, you’ll learn about the vital rules to be following in thinking about any topic at all and common and tempting mistakes that people fall into all the time when providing reasoning.

Enrol in the course here.

8. Neuroplasticity

Amongst the scientific and psychology circles, this has become quite the buzzword: Neuroplasticity. The concept promises to rewire our brain and improve everything from health and mental wellbeing to our quality of life. Gregory Caremans teaches the concept of Neuroplasticity and how you can take action and use this to your advantage in the course Neuroplasticity. Through it, you can develop mental flexibility, change habits, stop procrastination and even alter memories.

Gregory is a psychologist with a Master’s in communication and is specialized in Neurocognitive and Behavioral Approach. And even though he comes from a complex field, his course is instructed in such a way that you can easily use this information and apply it in your daily life.

Enrol in the course here.

9. Become A SuperLearner® 2

Similar to Learning How To Learn, this Udemy course Become A SuperLearner® 2 is all about learning faster and unlocking the vast potential of your mind. This course is different though in that it focuses more on improving your ability to learn new skills, provide advanced memory techniques, long-term retention and application of information.

Another way to think about this course is that it looks into cognitive and neurological factors that make learning easier and more successful with longer retention of information.


Enrol in the course here.

10. Get Beyond Work-Life Balance

The final course on the list is Get Beyond Work-Life Balance. As this course suggests, this is all about getting skills that help you to achieve balance and have effectiveness in both aspects of your life. This applies to both people in leadership roles and for individuals.

The course focuses a lot on the importance of inclusive leadership in creating flexible and productive work environments. Beyond this, the course provides a lot of research and real-work examples from various situations to deliver information and strategies you can apply in your life.

Enrol in the course here.

Final Thoughts

There are all kinds of courses that you can use to further enhance your life – be it personal or professional. And the beauty of personal development courses is the fact they are designed to be applied in your life more readily. You can begin to see the impact and change when applying this information from courses to real life.

As such, we encourage you to try out these courses. They could very well change your life.

Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via

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