Life Skillz

Everything I wish everyone I know had learned before meeting me:

  1. Listen to others
  2. Follow the steps
  3. Follow the rules
  4. Ignore distractions
  5. Ask for help
  6. Take turns when you talk
  7. Get along with others
  8. Stay calm with others
  9. Be responsible for your behavior
  10. Do nice things for others
[ Via Top 10 Social Skills Students Need to Succeed ]

Listen to Others
I’m still learning this one. I really enjoy listening to people and fully hearing their perspective. The problem is, people inspire me and I want to respond to them, and clarify, and test out their thoughts. While, I would prefer a conversation face-to-face over a beverage, this is one of the reasons I appreciate space for asynchronous conversation.

Follow the Steps
I don’t buy this one. Or maybe this falls under the category, “You can break the rules once you know them”? The most interesting experiences of my life–which have lead to the deepest learning–were a direct result of not following the steps.

Follow the Rules
Again. I don’t believe this. But I can see why it is an important social skill for kids to develop.

Ignore Distractions
Well, this one hits close to home. I’m as ADHD as the come. I was just distracted from writing this sentence because my cat stretched. (I need to stretch too.) Ok, where was I? Right, ignoring distrac oooh, a twitter… that’s interesting, I’ll tag that and save it for later. I need distractions. They keep me from killing myself from boredom. And I learn from distractions. I was creating out of circumstantial mashups before mashups were a word. Seriously. That 10 second chat I just had with a friend about some game they found online just made my code better. Seriously.

Ask for Help
No comment.

Ask for Help
Ok, I’ll admit I need help. And I’ll definitely admit that everyone I know should know how to ask for help. Although, I think we can take this one step further. Not only should everyone know how to ask for help, but everyone should learn how to leverage their partnerships with others. I could ask for someone to help me with someone. Or I could ask them to do said thing, and share some of my kungfoo with them, to combine our strengths to make some awesome, rather than being two people who are pretty ok at doing a lot of things.

Take Turns When You Talk
See? If we take turns talking. Then we both get to listen, and we both get to talk.

Get Along With Others
Yes, they’re stupid. Yes, they’re mean. No, they don’t have a clue how ridiculous that suggestion was. No, they’re not going to ever ‘get it’ or ‘see it your way’. So what? You never have any excuse not to get along with anyone else. You’re better than them, remember? That behavior–the not getting along thing–is why you hate so many people, remember? So don’t be one of them. And maybe, if you take the time to listen, you might learn something from them. If you really want to get crazy, ask them for help. Even if you don’t think you need it. You might learn something.

Stay Calm With Others
Breathe in.
Breathe out.

Be Responsible for your Behavior
Way too few people learn this. In fact, I’m willing to bet that no one sufficiently learned this social skills. We may have our moments, but most of those are wasted on little things, like, when you fear getting in trouble.

Do Nice Things for Others
Better yet, do sacrificially amazing things for others. Get past that nice junk, and just pour your lifeblood into someone else’s interests and passions. You will never amass more social mojo through any other rule. This is where the magic happens. By the way, this is called love.

  • Prayer Warrior

    One guidebook I use when making long-term plans for all my students is 7 Emotional Skills Every Child Needs by Galbraith and Hoyer. I submit these are skills we can ALL acquire and/or sharpen. (1) Respect for Authority (including recognizing that God is omnipotent), (2) Delayed Gratification, (3) Self-Awareness, (4) Empathy, (5) Social Awareness, (6) Motivation and Persistence, (7) Hope, and (8) Intimacy with God. p.s You may be wondering why the title says 7 skills but they actually discussed 8 skills. You got me. But, that brings to mind two other CRITICAL skills: FLEXIBILITY and WILLING TO FORGIVE.

  • kim

    Yeah, love. Like Thomas said.

  • 11. Copy/paste.
    12. Choosing (and remembering) a good username/password.

    🙂 Thanks.