What Does It Mean to Leverage Your Skills? How-to Strengthen Your Soft Skills and Improve Life! Pt.1


The world is changing fast, and the way we work is changing with it. People used to work in one job, in one company, and in one location. But today, we live in a gig economy where people move between gigs, companies and locations. The same goes for learning – people are constantly learning new skills that they can use to further their careers and find more opportunities to grow.


Do you want to build a career based on your strengths? If so, then mastering your soft skills is the first step.


Soft skills are those skills that you can't necessarily teach in a classroom or write down on a resume. They're the things that make you stand out from the crowd — those things that separate you from other people.


In this article, we'll explore the importance of soft skills and break down some of the most important ones you should know.


What Does It Mean to Leverage Your Skills?


Answer: Leveraging your skills means to use your strengthened skillset to SOLVE PROBLEMS in exchange for the income you receive. Instead of using time as leverage, you use your skills instead which allows for you to reach a ceiling-less income potential in your industry.


What Are Soft Skills?


Soft skills are those skills that aren't necessarily tangible or measurable but can be used to achieve goals and make progress in life. They're not specific job-related tasks or responsibilities but rather general behaviors and habits that are useful in any situation.


Soft skills include traits like communication ability, emotional intelligence (EQ), creativity, leadership skills and adaptability. These are essential qualities that employers look for when hiring new employees or promoting their existing staff members into management positions. In fact, many companies now require all employees to demonstrate certain soft skills as part of their performance reviews — even if they don't directly relate to their current job duties!


Why are soft skills important?


Soft skills are important because they help you succeed in all areas of your life: at work, in relationships, as a parent or spouse, and even in your own self-development. Developing your soft skills helps you build a rapport with other people—even those who seem unapproachable.


It's also important to note that they help you communicate better in your relationships, which can save you time and energy.


How to identify your soft skills?


There is a reason why soft skills are called "soft." They are not tangible. You don't see them or hear them. They are the things that make you feel good about yourself and your interactions with others, but they aren't obvious to the naked eye.


However, these skills can be learned and practiced just like any other skill. You can develop them, so that they become part of who you are.


Here are some ways to identify your soft skills:


1. Think about how you feel when you're doing something well or something poorly. What makes the difference? This is a clue to a skill that you have developed or need to develop in order to improve your overall performance in life and work.


2. Pay attention to what others say about your behavior and performance — both positive and negative comments! They often offer useful insights into what people value in others and how they want to be treated by others (this goes for self-evaluations as well).


3. Identify the behaviors that lead to success in your life and work — these are probably signs of skills you already have!


Why do you need to master your soft skills?


Soft skill mastery is more important than ever before. The ability to communicate effectively and work well with others is vital. All of us have been taught some of these skills at school or college, yet it's fair to say that most people never master them. To succeed in life, you need to be able to express yourself and get your point across. You also need to be able to interact easily and comfortably with other people.


In many cases, soft skills will be more important than technical skills in the workplace. For example, if you are applying for a job as an accountant, it may well be more important that you can communicate clearly with your clients than that you know how to use complex accounting software.


This means that applicants who lack technical expertise can still get hired if their soft skills are strong enough. It also means that if you want to stand out from other candidates applying for a job at a technology company, you need to master your soft skills before applying for any role at all.


Here are 13 curated soft skills that industries are looking for in employees, contractors or partnerships.

Skill 1: Critical Thinking


The benefits of critical thinking are numerous. It helps you to be more creative and innovative, to make better decisions and to solve problems more effectively. It also makes you more effective in your job, as well as more interesting and enjoyable to be around.


The benefits of critical thinking are numerous. It helps you to be more creative and innovative, to make better decisions and to solve problems more effectively. It also makes you more effective in your job, as well as more interesting and enjoyable to be around.


Critical thinking is the ability to think about situations from different perspectives, rather than just accepting the information that we receive at face value. This skill can help us to make better decisions because it helps us identify factors that we may otherwise have overlooked or ignored due to our own biases or assumptions.


Critical thinking can help us avoid making mistakes that lead us into bad relationships, bad investments or other negative situations that we might regret later on down the track. As such it's an extremely useful skill for anyone who wants their life to go smoothly without any unnecessary complications!

Skill 2: Judgment and Complex Decision Making


This is the ability to make sound judgments and decisions when facing complex problems. It involves being able to analyze a situation and understand all of the relevant information before making a decision.


Good judgment is essential for success in business and life because it helps us make decisions based on facts rather than emotions or other distractions. Having good judgment also means that we're able to understand different points of view and respond appropriately without getting defensive or angry — two things that will make you seem less credible when dealing with difficult people or situations thus enabling you to make complex decision making.

Skill 3: Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and Empathy


What is EQ?


EQ is an acronym for emotional intelligence quotient. It's the ability to identify and manage your own emotions as well as those of other people in order to enhance relationships and achieve goals effectively. EQ is also known as social or interpersonal intelligence — basically, it's knowing how to interact with people on all levels: emotionally, intellectually and physically.


Someone with high EQ knows how to effectively communicate their ideas and feelings with others without causing harm or offense; they're also able to read body language accurately so they don't say something offensive or hurtful by mistake.


Taking a look at empathy its definition is: the ability to understand and share another person's feelings.


It's what allows us to connect with other people emotionally — and it's one of the most powerful tools in our arsenal as software developers. When we empathize with others, we're able to make them feel heard and understood. And when they feel understood, they're more likely to help us out or give us what we want.


Empathy helps us bridge communication gaps between people who have different backgrounds and experiences. It helps us get along with our coworkers, friends and family members better than ever before - even when we're working remotely from across the globe!

Skill 4: Creativity


Why should I be more creative?


Creativity is essential because it helps us see new opportunities and solve problems in new ways. It's also a great way to stand out in an increasingly crowded job market — especially when employers are looking for people with soft skills.


Creativity is the key to success. It’s what separates good from great, and average from exceptional.


Creativity is the ability to see things differently and think outside of the box. It’s what allows you to take a problem and find a solution that most people would never have considered.


You may not realize it, but creativity is a skill that can be learned. You don’t need to be born with it — you can train yourself to become more creative by using these simple exercises:


Take time out of your day to relax and daydream. Close your eyes, sit back in your chair, and let your mind wander where it wants to go without judgment or criticism from yourself or anyone else.


Listen more than you speak. Ask questions when appropriate, but don’t feel pressured into always having an opinion about everything being discussed around you. People will respect you for listening more than they will if you constantly interrupt with your own thoughts and opinions on every subject under the sun — even if those thoughts are brilliant ones!


Challenge yourself daily by doing things like taking an unfamiliar route home from work or trying a new restaurant instead of going back to your usual place every time you go out with friends.

Skill 5: Collaboration and Teamwork


In life, you’re going to be part of many different teams.


You have your family and friends, your co-workers, and even your social circle. In these groups, you need to be able to work together as a team.


Collaboration and teamwork skills are essential in the workplace because they help you become more productive and advance your career.


You can't go it alone. You may be the best person for the job, but when you're in a leadership position, you'll need to delegate tasks to others and work as part of a team.


Collaboration and teamwork skills are crucial in today's workplace. If you want to get ahead, you'll need to learn how to work with others and help them succeed.


The ability to work with others is essential because no one person can do everything. It's important to understand how other people think so that you can communicate with them effectively.


Collaboration skills are especially important when working on projects with teams that include people from different backgrounds or departments within your organization. In order to build a successful team, you need to understand what motivates each individual member and how they like to work together.


This will help everyone feel comfortable working together toward a common goal and will also help resolve conflicts before they arise.

Skill 6: Interpersonal Communication Skills


Interpersonal communication skills are the foundation of any successful relationship. You can have all other skills in spades, but if you can't communicate with others in a way that makes them feel comfortable and confident about you, it won't matter much.


Here are some examples:


How to comfort someone who's upset, how to tell someone they're doing something wrong, how to talk about your feelings without making it seem like you're trying to manipulate someone else or how to talk about an uncomfortable topic (like money).


Tune In next month (December 2022) for the continuation of: Skills 7 - 13 (as listed below) and the final blog post for the year!


Skill 7: Working in Gigs

Skill 8: Adaptability and Flexibility

Skill 9: Cultural Intelligence and Diversity Consciousness

Skill 10: Ethical Awareness

Skill 11: Leadership Skills

Skill 12: Branding Skills

Skill 13: Networking Skills

Conclusion:


Mastering your soft skills will allow you to deliver more value to the world.


For everyone out there, don't be afraid to meet new people. I know it can be intimidating, but it's worthwhile to expand your social boundaries. Otherwise you'll be stuck inside of your comfort zone, only meeting the same people over and over again. And while that may be comfortable in the moment, it limits your growth as a person and your ability to add value to the world.


Practicing your soft skills can be a lot of work, but it is absolutely worth it. The more effort you put into developing these skills, the more value you will deliver to yourself and the world around you. Try out some of the techniques I've recommended here and see how things go for you.


And if you have any tips of your own, feel free to share them in the comments below!


Thanks for reading, I appreciate you!


- Tara "Articulate Tee" Omorogbe

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