5 Simple Skills Most People Aren’t Very Good At

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Brian Kight

I’ve built my life on a basic premise: If I execute simple skills with elite discipline I will create extraordinary results.

It’s part belief, part observation, part experience.

Deep down I believe it’s 100% true. I observe the majority of complainers lack discipline in simple skills while the majority of responsible people excel in at least a few simple things. I experience the impact in my own personal and professional life when I execute simple skills with elite discipline and when I don’t.

Observation and experience also shows me there are real trends in the skills people tend to lack discipline. Here are five easy-to-spot skills to observe. First look at your own behavior, discipline, and results. Personal responsibility always comes first. Then observe other people as you see and interact with them.

  • Listening: everyone knows to listen, but few do, and even fewer ever practice to get better at listening even while it creates crippling dysfunction and broken relationships.
  • Clarity: the first key to clarity is honesty and the second is an empathetic understanding of who is receiving the message.
  • Influence: we all want other people to do things, but how to do it well and make it a good experience is still a rarely practiced skill.
  • Decisiveness: making decisions as quickly and confidently as possible is less common than an underlying fear of making mistakes, being wrong, and being judged.
  • Adjustment: part of the reason people struggle with decisiveness is because they aren’t good at adjustments and feel trapped if their original decision wasn’t good enough.

What I love about these skills is they require little to no pre-existing talent or experience. All it takes is a commitment to discipline to dominate these skills and win the moments where you apply them.

Everything is training for something. Do the work.

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