Ways to Strengthen Your Soft Skills Outside of Work

People generally gravitate towards others who are pleasant and enjoyable to be around. The same can be said for employers. (Fun fact: Bosses are people too!)  Employers also like to hire those who are decisive problem solvers who work well with others. These natural people skills are known in the workforce as “soft skills.” These are skills that are less technical and more related to emotions and personality. They can’t necessarily be taught, but they can be practiced. Here are a few ways you can reinforce and strengthen your own soft skills in your everyday life.

Surround Yourself with Positivity

There’s an old saying, “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.” It means that a sweet demeanor will attract the favor of others over a sour disposition. It may seem like common sense, but we’ve all had a co-worker with a bad attitude. And look where that got them. Try to avoid negative people in and outside of the office. Their negativity can be toxic and affect your mood and productivity at work. 

Join a Team
If you have trouble coming out of your shell or a desire to get fit, try getting active with an intramural sports league. Team sports are great for increasing your personal fitness as well as your professional team building and networking skills. With activities ranging from flag football and kickball to volleyball and softball, most cities have a social league that offers a variety of fun recreational sports that can help you meet new people and build relationships. 

Become a Volunteer

Volunteering in your community offers opportunities to practice many soft skills at once. You can enhance your conflict resolution and problem-solving skills by giving your time at a local crisis call center. Or perhaps You will become a skilled and empathetic communicator by learning to talk less and listen more. Whatever your passion, find a cause close to your heart and give what time you can. The rewards you will receive from this generous and selfless act will greatly improve you in all walks of life.

Get Back on the Clock
Even when you’re off the clock, you should try staying on time. Time management is a very desirable soft skill in the workplace as being late shows a lack of respect and discipline. If you find yourself rushing from errand to errand, you may need to budget your time more wisely. When planning your day, consider any variables (such as traffic, construction, and school schedules) that could affect your estimated time of arrival. You can also reset your internal clock by going to bed and waking up earlier, setting your watch faster, or keeping an updated calendar of each day’s events.

Fine tuning your soft skills not only makes you a more valuable employee, but also a better human being. To help you realize your best self personally and professionally, apply for our life-changing LifeWorks training program. As a part of LifeWorks, you will be connected to the people and resources that can help you gain the specific strengths and abilities needed to be successful in work and life. To get started, apply online or call The Jobs Partnership at 407-641-0755.

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