Develop your skills and emotional intelligence


  1. Find your strengths.
    Consider your five biggest achievements or wins. What were the skills involved? These are your strengths. Write down a list of your strengths in detail. Instead of “persistent,” consider “intellectual rigor.”

  2. Strengthen your skills.
    On your prior strengths list, practice using one of them in unique ways that impact your environment (work, at home, etc.) once a week for 2-3 months before sharpening a new strength on the list.

  3. Strengthen your weaknesses.
    Ask 3-4 friends or family members to identify your top 3 weaknesses. Look for consistencies and then start trying to strengthen them one by one.

  4. Read five books on the topic of your purpose.
    The first book should be the best seller, and the purpose is to have fun and get your “feet wet.” The second book should also be popular but has a little more technical jargon. The third book is denser and more technical, and the focus should be the big picture of the topic. The fourth and fifth books should be the hardest reads, the ones that have questions that blunder the experts.

  5. Focus on the 20 that will give you 80 percent of the results.
    The Pareto principle or 80/20 rule is the idea that 80% of your effort comes from 20% of the work. Focus on the tasks that give you the biggest bang for your buck.

  6. Increase your Emotional Intelligence with Empathy Meditation.
    Using “compassion-enhancing meditation,” set aside 20 minutes to meditate on anyone nice to you and let yourself feel gratitude towards them. This can include wishing the best for them in happiness, health, comfort, etc. Then repeat it for your family and friends, acquaintances, coworkers, and strangers.

  7. Develop your Empathy with Imagination.
    Set aside 10 minutes, take the time to think about how it feels to be a passerby stranger, and “walk in their shoes.” Consider their feelings, actions, and how you would feel internally to understand their circumstance(s) better.

  8. Grow your creativity and insights by reading.
    Read a topic that’s out of your specialty but in your curiosity intersections discussed prior for 25 minutes daily. Reading 20-50 pages is sufficient, letting your mind wander and connect ideas automatically.

  9. Solve problems with the “MacGyver Method.”
    Write down a problem you feel stuck in as much detail as possible. Then, walk away from it by doing something else that isn't mentally exhausting for one or four hours, like gardening or sports. After that, grab a sheet of paper and write down anything you’d like—a poem, a quote, free write—and usually, the solution to your problem will appear.

  10. Look at fear as a playmate.
    Every time you feel fear, take a moment to feel the sensations in the body. Next, instead of seeing fear as something to be avoided, see it as something to help you focus, and that gives you excitement.


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