For many people, the learning flame tends to flicker after they finish school, as it gets replaced with daily tasks and responsibilities. Exceptionally successful people, on the other hand, set themselves apart from the pack by being constant learners.
As a result, they acquire unique skills that aren't often taught on the job or in university but are still vital for their extraordinary success and wealth.
The good news is that you don't have to enroll in night school or quit your day job to emulate the greats. It won't happen overnight, but if you devote just an hour a day to learning some simple skills outside of your job description, you will see radical success and improvement.
Read on to learn about seven simple yet powerful skills you can start learning today to improve your life tomorrow:
Take it from an English major who created a wealth management firm: Being able to write well will pay off in ways you can't imagine. Don't just take my word for it, though. Studies by Harvard Business Review found that great writing skills have an impact across nearly every industry and position.
You don't necessarily have to become the next J.K. Rowling, but an ability to succinctly communicate without errors will always pay off.
According to best-selling novelist Stephen King, writing well is a skill anyone can hone by regularly practicing it and reading books daily. For starters, consider some free online writing courses paired with a few minutes of bedtime reading.
It's been found that 70 percent of jobs are found through networking. Even if you aren't on the prowl, I guarantee you that stepping outside your professional bubble will yield positive results.
You are doing networking right if it is anchored on trust.
To build trust among your key stakeholders, it involves being your authentic self and knowing when and how to sell yourself in as organically as possible. As Susan Solovic, an award-winning entrepreneur and keynote speaker once said, "people do business with people they know, like, and trust."
In the infamous "marshmallow study," children were offered the choice of either a marshmallow treat immediately or a larger reward in the future. Researchers claimed that those who could delay gratification later ended up with higher test scores, incomes and better overall life satisfaction.
One example of how delayed gratification can help you reap huge benefits is in the world of investing and finance. For instance, it may feel good to sell that stock when it takes an upturn, but it's important to think about the rewards you could see if you stuck to your long-term goals instead. Take Ron Wayne, for example, who is the co-founder of Apple and sold his stock for $800 before it turned into the multi-billion-dollar company it is today.
Success starts in the mind.
When we embrace positive thinking, we build our character and get to improve that way we get things done. Staying positive is the first step; it helps you combat ideas that could slow down your progress.
By thinking positive, you also think big, and aspire for greater results. As a result, having that exponential mindset will expedite your growth and lead to success.
Over a long enough time span, your decisions determine your success. Take a cue from former U.S. President Barack Obama who realized the impact that seemingly tiny choices, like his suit, have on his life. He believes that one must trim own decisions to avoid fatigue, and his conclusions are backed by science.
You don't necessarily have to wear the same suit every day to master this skill. It can all start with honing in on what you do best and paring down everything else.
Nearly every highly successful person, from Indra Nooyi to Richard Branson, tends to wake up at around 5 AM.
Aside from giving you more time to be productive, waking up earlier helps you in variety of other ways. There's freedom in waking up on your own terms rather than being woken up by an alarm clock and rushing to work. And, when you get up earlier, you give yourself a quiet moment to meditate.
To get started on the path to being exceptional, you must start earlier than the rest of the pack.
A resilient spirit coupled with flexibility will give you an advantage over people who choose not to continue the moment they face failure or defeat. It took me more than a decade to grow my savings, which started from as little as $200, to now being able to run my own firm.
Jack Ma, who is China's most successful entrepreneur but no stranger to failure, said, "If you don't give up, you still have a chance ...."
You cannot avoid ups and downs along the way but you can uphold a strong spirit to give you the energy to find new ways to accomplish your short and long-term goals.
Elle Kaplan is the Founder and CEO of LexION Capital, a fiduciary wealth management firm in New York City serving high-net-worth individuals. She is also the Chief Investment Officer and Founder of LexION Alpha.
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