Kathleen Elkins wrote an article for the Business Insider entitled, The 13 most valuable skills that anyone could have. A search on Quora cataloged what responders considered life’s most important skills, most of which cannot be taught in a classroom. The top 13 experiences are acquired by living, observing others, and making mistakes. The great thing about being surrounded by people who have significant experience is that you can pick their brains. A recent Quora thread that asked users for the most valuable skill a person can have for their entire life.
After sorting through the responses, here are my top five (5). However, you can read the original article here:
1. “Stealing” from the greats – “If you want to be successful, you must learn to steal! Or, ‘model.’ Modeling is a process of going in and figuring out what the expert does. If you want to be successful in life, find someone who is great and attach to them at the hip. As Pablo Picasso said: ‘Good artists copy. Great artists steal.'”
2. Self-discipline – “With self-discipline and perseverance you can acquire any skill. We all make resolutions throughout the year. The only thing stopping us from completing all these resolutions is ourselves. An inner voice within us stops us from waking up early in the morning or meeting new people. If we have proper self-discipline we can suppress this voice and live a life that is defined by our own rules.”
3. Knowing what you don’t know – “The only difference between the guy who achieves his own definition of success and the guy who doesn’t, is that one of them knew what questions to ask. One of them knew what needed to be improved upon. One of them decided to be honest about what it is they don’t know.”
4. Turning obstacles into opportunities – “Obstacles are everywhere. The weak are broken by it, the strong survive it, and the great turn it into opportunities. What matters most is not what these obstacles are, but how we see them, how we react to them, and whether we keep our composure.”
5. Not taking conflict personally – “Whenever we are engaged in a heated discussion with someone we tend to listen more with the intent of replying, than actually understanding his point of view. We try to combat by bringing things from the past and let our preconceived notions about the other person cloud our judgment. “Respond to his points, not his behavior.”
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