Underrated Life Skills That Always Get You Ahead at Work and In Life

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So many things in life are underrated; some more importantly than others, and some more important to others than to me or you. For one, I think that a firm bedtime and nightly routine is highly underrated for many kids and their parents. It is, simply put, the most important thing we do all day long in our house. Then again, our kids have never fussed or put up a pre-bedtime fight. We don’t have to go into their rooms and lay with them until they calm down or deal with them coming out of their rooms a hundred times for various reasons. Our kids know that bedtime is bedtime and routine is routine; and my husband and I get to spend several quality hours together relaxed and unhurried every evening. It’s like date night at home every single night. Do you see what I mean by underrated?

Your skills in the office are also underrated; provided you have the right ones, of course. Now, I haven’t been in an office in well over eight years. I work from home and have since before our first daughter was born (she will be 8 on Sunday and I’m going through some serious emotion at the moment, just so you know). I might not know how working in a typical office looks anymore, but I’m certain that I know a thing or two about work ethic and skill that might help you get ahead at work. Trust me when I say that there are several things the typical employee does that are severely underrated but might just be the difference between a promotion and staying in the same place the rest of your work career. Want to know what they are so you can hone your skills?

Be Positive

I cannot tell you how often I encounter people with negative attitudes. I’m not saying I’m positive all the time, every moment of every day, but I feel that being a positive person is a much better use of my time than being negative. I have a woman in my life that I’d love to minimize my time with, but she’s very close family and I cannot, who is nothing short of miserable every second of every single day. I detest speaking to her on the phone and visiting with her because all she does is complain. She complains, she talks poorly about everyone at work and in her life, she is always putting others down; she complains all the time. It’s draining and it’s sad.

If you have a positive attitude, you’re much easier to be around and much better to work with than all those negative nellies. There’s a difference between being a little funny, honest and even sarcastic, so don’t lose your “you” but if you can’t find the positive in any situation, perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate your life.

Develop Stellar Communication Skills

I know this sounds simple, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t bother to communicate in the least. I have a friend who tells me regularly how annoying one of her coworkers is because she refuses to ask for help – ever – until it’s too late and she’s done everything wrong so badly that it will take more time to undo it and then redo it than it would have taken her to just ask for help. Communicate well, ask for help and speak up; it’s a quality your boss will appreciate more than you know.

Get to the Point

When you hem and haw around a subject or spend a half hour explaining something you could have had handled in a matter of minutes, no one appreciates that. Find a way to be concise and to the point and your boss is going to love it. No one wants their time wasted on inefficiency due to someone else’s lack of storytelling. Get to the point.

Show Your Confidence

Everyone loves a person with confidence. There is just something so compelling about those who are confident in their ways; their looks, their beliefs, their loves and their interests and even their work. I think that so many people lack a certain level of confidence that they simply cannot ignore those who have an innate level of confidence they are not afraid to show. Just be sure you don’t cross the line from confident into cocky and your boss will certainly take notice and put you on the fast track to success.

Develop People Skills

This is where I lack, and this is why I feel I can never work for other people in a tradition setting where I am forced to interact with people on the regular. I like to keep to myself. I have my family and my little group of people, and that’s about it. I don’t care for small talk, I have very little patience for people who are uninteresting, silly or lack common sense, and I’d rather just go about my business without worrying about being a people person.

In a world where so many of us are self-described not-people persons, one who has people skills becomes invaluable in the workplace. Those in charge will take note of anyone who is good with others, friendly and can handle themselves in any situation.

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