In my research of people who live in the Renaissance Human / Polymath / Multi-hyphenated category — people who are masters of multiple things — I’ve come across interesting traits that could be argued as a contributed factor to their prestige and creativity.
I’ll define these as ‘Life Skills’.
Life Skills are force multipliers. As the old economic aphorism goes, ‘a rising tide lifts all boats’, Life Skills are skills that elevate all areas of your life.
Sometimes the improvements create direct effects, but most of the time Life skills improve adjacent areas that we might not even notice unless we are looking. Let me explain with a classic example of a Life Skill: public speaking.
Public speaking is one of the infamous skills that most of us fear, and all dream of being great at. Naturally becoming great at public speaking enables you to improve in a lot of things you would expect: communication, captivating an audience, storytelling, selling, marketing etc.
But it also improves adjacent skills you might not consider: confidence, clear and concise thinking, respect and influence, charisma, and fear.
Imagine the impact on your life if you were more confident and had better control of fear. What would your business look like if you were more able to sell your ideas and had the respect of a public speaker? How would clear and concise thinking measure on your goals in life?
Public speaking is just one Life Skill. There are others with less barrier to entry, reading, for example.
Reading is the cheapest, direct source to the greatest minds that have ever lived. Learning to have to ability to read well and often can completely change your life. Think about that: a few words have a massive impact on who you are, what you do, how you think, where you live, who you know, how you communicate and more. Plus, you can do it all in your underwear in the comfort of your home, no stage required.
Another way to think about Life Skills is they are skills that improve character.
If character traits are the foundation of who we are and the quality of life we experience, then Life Skills are the practices we can challenge ourselves with to reach that potential.
And the more Life Skills you master, the more you can elevate your life.
The nice thing too is that some Life Skills overlap, and new ones are constantly popping up and evolving through technology over time. Maybe you have no desire to get up on a stage to give a speech. But what about a podcast? Or how about starting a YouTube channel? Both are great options that lead to improving your ability to think and communicate (as well as other skills that don’t overlap with public speaking, like being comfortable on camera).
The nice thing about podcasting (and YouTube) is, even if the only views you get are from your mom, you’re still improving your ability to communicate, connect, think and tell stories. And any skill you learn you can take with you to the next thing you do. which means life skills are lifetime.
Life Skills are lifetime. Learning them, even from a failed experience, means you can use them wherever you are, whatever you do.
What are some other Life Skills out there (in no particular order):
- Money: Imagine being great at money. What would an extra $1000+ a month do for your life?
- Decision Making
- Making / Building
Mastering even 1 of these can improve your life in innumerable ways.
Life Skills are something I would like to focus more on here at Renaissance Life.
Let me know your thoughts, and reach out and email me other Life Skills that I’ve missed!
STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner
Daily Blog #555