college success skills

Tips for Listening Well

1. Don’t interrupt. Let the speaker finish what they are saying – and at a speed that is comfortable for them – before formulating your own response.

2. Give the speaker your full and undivided attention. Ignore what is happening around you and block out distracting noises.

3. Pay attention to your own internal dialogue, and don’t allow your mind to wander. This is not the time for you to be judging or mentally criticising the speaker, or to be thinking about all the items on your to-do list for the day. Focus on what is being said, the tone of voice, and the body language of the speaker.

4. Pay attention to your own body language. Ask yourself: what kind of vibes am I giving off? What kind of message am I sending? The emphasis should be on looking and sounding concerned, interested, focused, accepting and genuine.

5. Be comfortable with silence. Often silence encourages the person to say more. Also, we don’t need to have an answer to every question, or a solution to every problem. Most of the time it’s presence and empathy that count the most.

6. Don’t get drawn into playing the game of “I have it so much worse than you; or my problem is bigger than yours.” In this situation, you are there for them. They are the focus and priority right now.

College Grads: Things You Need To Know To Succeed At Your First Job

You graduated from college. Congratulations! Now you’ve landed your first job and want to do well. Here are 10 things you need to know, to help you succeed:

1) Work with your manager to create a game plan for your first 90 days.

2) Ask your manager to define the requirements for success in the job.

3) Be professional, prompt and efficient.

4) Get to know your coworkers.

5) Pay attention during meetings.

6) Be a role model of professionalism in every email.

7) Deliver on your commitments.

8) Look for areas where you can put your skills to use and become an expert.

9) Continuously prove you are an asset to the organization.

Starting a new job is nerve wracking for everyone. It’s the grown-up version of the first day of school jitters. But by using these tips, you can decrease your stress and help ensure a successful start in your new job. Read more.

anonymous asked:

i think college is trying to kill me. i have more homework in english and math than anything. i'm only taking 4 classes this semester and it's kinda overwhelming. art is my easy class but i never seem to have time to do my college success skills class even though it's somewhat self paced?? i feel like my english teacher gives us way too much work to do. i only have that class twice a week and we get HW every class. all i ever seem to work on is math and english :(

i’m sorry u have so much work but hang in there!! it will get easier. u just need some time to adapt and get used to it - after that, u’ll get through it just fine!! if other people can manage to finish college in one piece, u can and u will too~ if ur rly struggling though i recommend u to talk to ur teachers about it and see if u can work something out

How to be Less Socially Awkward

1. Recognize that you’re not the only person who feels this way. Many of the people around you will be feeling self conscious and ill at ease as well.
2. Try not to over-analyze every situation, and how you come across, or appear to other people. That will only undermine your self confidence, and make your behaviour seem unnatural and forced.
3. Try to figure out the source of your feelings. For example, have you been criticized, bullied or shamed, or been made to feel that you’re just not good enough?
4. Recognize the thought patterns that are common at these times – like “I’m useless, inferior and don’t know what to say.” Then tell yourself you’re playing the same old record again.
5. Notice people who like you and who affirm who you are, and notice why they like you – then remind yourself of that.
6. When you start to feel anxious about being with other people remind yourself that others seem to like your company.
7. Imagine a scene where you’re feeling confident. Replay that mental picture as often as you can. It will help to change your feelings so you feel more confident.

Qualities of an Attractive Personality

Someone with an attractive personality:

1. Is warm and friendly towards to others.

2. Is open and real

3. Knows their own strengths and weaknesses - and neither boasts nor puts themselves down.

4. Looks for the good in every situation, and is generally positive and optimistic.

5. Doesn’t gossip or pass on others’ secrets

6. Doesn’t gloat when things go wrong for others.

7. Is secure and has a healthy self–esteem; is not self-centred and narcissistic.

8. Is not highly critical or argumentative.

9. Is not possessive and jealous in relationships.

10. Makes time for the people they care about.

Qualities of a Winning Personality

1. Exhibit integrity – A person is said to have integrity if what they say and what they do are rooted in the same set of core values.

2. Don’t speak badly of others – If you speak badly about others to a friend, the chances are you’ll also speak badly about them. Hence, they are likely to be hesitant in what they share with you.

3. Be an optimist – This doesn’t mean burying your head in the sand. It means choosing not to dwell on the negatives, and actively looking for the positives.

4. Make the effort to be helpful – Life is so much sweeter if you’re thoughtful and kind – and we rarely forget someone who’s caring and warm.

5. Set some goals and have some ambition - This is an extremely contagious quality. Not only will you achieve higher goals for yourself, you’ll give hope to others, and inspire them to try.

6. Seek to be compassionate and understanding – All of us face battles and experience hard times. Empathising with others when life is tough helps to ease their burden and renew their inner spark.

7. Believe in, love and respect yourself - If you don’t accept, respect and love yourself, then you’ll send out vibes that you’re inadequate. However, it you love, believe in and treat yourself well then it’s likely that others will treat you that way, too.

8. Persist until you succeed – Although ambition is important, it is not enough. You have to persevere if you’re going to succeed. So when you stumble or fall down just get up and start again. Then keep on going till you finally succeed.

9. Be open minded and willing to learn - If you’re closed in your thinking and set in your ways then you’ll never discover a different, better way .. and you’ll close yourself off to other possibilities.

10. Take responsibility for your life - Blaming others for your problems, or acting like a victim won’t help you to move forwards, and have the life you want. Take control of your destiny. Success is up to you.

Tips for Making Small Talk

Being good at making small talk is an important life skill, and is key for making a positive impression. Some tips to help you with this include:

1. Go prepared when you’re meeting new people, or when you have to attend a social event. Think about some topics you can talk about with others (and that will depend on the people you are meeting). Prepare some general questions to get others talking (For example, what are they doing for the holidays; or what good movies have they seen recently?) Also, if you’ve met some of the people at a previous event, try to remember a few things about them (such as what are their main interests, or where do they work?)

2. Most people feel uncomfortable when meeting someone new so be the first person to say “hello.” If you’re not sure if the person will remember you, help put them at their ease by saying who you are.

3. Don’t rush introductions. Focus hard on remembering the names of those you meet, and use them often to fix them in your mind.

4. Help the other person talk by opening up the conversation with open-ended questions that asks for more details. For example, “Isn’t this a great party! How do you know (the host)?”

5. Pay careful attention to what the person’s saying; don’t allow your mind to drift or to start to wander off. Eye contact should be steady – so don’t glance to the side.

6. Make sure you listen more than you talk to someone new.

7. Work on having something relevant and interesting to say. Know what’s going on and making headlines in the news. These can help to open up a conversation. (For example, you can lead with a comment like “What do you think about…?” Have you heard…?” What is your take on…?”

8. Avoid controversial and negative topics; also, refrain from boring stories that have too many details. It’s meant to be a casual, light and easy conversation.

9. Pay attention to your body language. If you act as if you’re comfortable and confident, that will put the people around you at ease, too. However, if you look shy, awkward and uncomfortable, that will rub off on the people you are socialising with.

10. Before you join a conversation that’s already in progress, first stand on the sidelines and listen carefully. Don’t squeeze your way in with a badly-timed remark.

Want to Improve your Communication Skills?

1. Listen carefully when others are speaking. Keep your mouth shut – and focus totally on them.

2. Never, ever talk over other people. This is disrespectful – and a real turn off.

3. Even if the person leaves an hour between each word, resist the temptation to complete their sentence for them.

4. Don’t interrupt - let the other person finish. Then, acknowledge what they’ve shared before adding your own thoughts.

5. Paraphrase or summarise what’s just been shared. It shows that you have listened – and are keen to understand.

6. Maintain good eye contact as this says you’re interested, and the speaker and their story are important to you.

7 Rules of Life

1. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present.
2. What others think of you is none of your business.
3. Time heals almost everything; give it time.
4. Don`t compare your life to others`, and don`t judge them. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
5. Stop thinking too much; it`s alright not to know the answers. They will come to you when you least expect it.
6. No-one is in charge of your happiness, except you.
7. Smile. You don`t own all the problems in the world.
Source: Whisper of the heart.

Tips for Listening Well

1. Don’t interrupt. Let the speaker finish what they are saying – and at a speed that is comfortable for them – before formulating your own response.

2. Give the speaker your full and undivided attention. Ignore what is happening around you and block out distracting noises.

3. Pay attention to your own internal dialogue, and don’t allow your mind to wander. This is not the time for you to be judging or mentally criticising the speaker, or to be thinking about all the items on your to-do list for the day. Focus on what is being said, the tone of voice, and the body language of the speaker.

4. Pay attention to your own body language. Ask yourself: what kind of vibes am I giving off? What kind of message am I sending? The emphasis should be on looking and sounding concerned, interested, focused, accepting and genuine.

5. Be comfortable with silence. Often silence encourages the person to say more. Also, we don’t need to have an answer to every question, or a solution to every problem. Most of the time it’s presence and empathy that count the most.

6. Don’t get drawn into playing the game of “I have it so much worse than you; or my problem is bigger than yours.” In this situation, you are there for them. They are the focus and priority right now.

How to Start a Conversation

1. Comment on the location, occasion or event. For example, look around and see if there is anything you could talk about. Examples are something like: “Isn’t this such an incredible view!”, or “Isn’t that a really cute dog!”
2. Ask open-ended questions. Most people love to talk about themselves. An open question requires a more detailed response. That is, something more than of just a simple yes or no. Open questions tend to begin with who, when, what, why, where, and how.
3. Ask the person about their pets. This is a great way start a conversation as people are usually very fond of their pets.
4. Talk about some current events. You’ll need to read or watch the news to help you with this.
5. If you have met the person before, draw on any previous conversations you’ve had. This not only gives you something to talk about, but it also shows that you paid attention when you talked to them before.
6. Try and stick to questions that are easy to answer as that makes the conversation easier for the person. An example might be “what are you doing during the holiday?”
7. Be sensitive about the kinds of questions you ask. They mustn’t be too personal or sensitive in nature. Also, avoid touchy topics, and try to keep things light.

How to Get Ahead in Life

1. Don’t pay too much attention to the way you feel. Feelings change throughout the day and they are unreliable. Don’t let them rule your life, or interfere with your goals.

2. Decide not to worry as it tends to make things worse. If you focus on your worries it will drain your energy – and often what we’re dreading doesn’t happen anyway.

3. Cut the internal commentary. Stop telling yourself that things are going to fall apart, or your efforts won’t succeed, or you won’t be popular.  Keep trying, moving forwards, and getting on with life.

4. Stop being self-critical. You need to be your own cheerleader and your biggest fan in life.  Note progress, perseverance, attitude and inner strength. Be affirming, kind, believing and coach towards success.

5. Stop feeling guilty. Feeling guilty changes nothing. You are going to make mistakes. Accept you aren’t perfect - then get up and try again.

6. Stop worrying about what others think of you. At the end of the day it doesn’t matter what they think. Choose your own goals for your life – you’re not accountable to them.

7. Don’t worry about set backs or changes to your plans. Plans always need adjusting and things always go wrong – but that doesn’t mean “it’s over” or you’ll never reach your goals. Expect to make some changes – just be adaptable.

Playing your colours right

Blue: Makes the people around you feel at ease. Dark blues are great for interviews and lighter blues for parties and social events.

Red: The colour we associate with passion. Research conducted by the University of Rochester found that men were more attracted to, and turned on by, women who wearing ruby red clothing. Again, this is great for parties – but not always at work.

Purple: This brings out our creativity, and is associated with self confidence, independent thinking and class. Purple is appropriate on almost any occasion.

Black: Conveys authority, so that people see you as being powerful, confident and competent. It is the colour of choice of authority figures (like the police), or for stylists, trend setters and icons.

Orange: This luscious, exuberant colour sends the message that the wearer is friendly, sociable, relaxed, and approachable. It’s great for social events – but not for important business meetings.

Green: This is the colour of happiness and contentment. It can be an instant mood changer, putting others around you at their ease. It is great for all occasions, and can be worn in both the daytime and the evening.

Saying “No” to Others

1. Have a plan for your day, week, month and life. If you know where you’re going and what it will take, you have an easy reason to turn others down.

2. Recognise what it will cost if you give in and say “yes”. Saying “yes” once or twice may not push you to the edge. But those “yeses” sure add up and can cause a lot of stress.

3. Recognise that it’s OK to say “no” from time to time. It doesn’t mean that you’re the enemy or someone difficult. We are free to make decisions and choose for ourselves.

4. Say “no” by the medium that you’re comfortable with. For example, send an email if it’s easier to try and write things down, or if you’re not really good at saying “no” face to face.

5. Don’t over-explain or say more than you need. You don’t have to get permission from someone to say “no”. It’s not up to them to decide if it’s OK.

6. Don’t make it too easy for others to contact you. If you’re hard to track down often people just won’t try – so keep yourself busy or switch your laptop off.

7. Rehearse in advance so you feel more confident, or even take some time to write down what you will say.

8. Delay saying “yes” as that says you’re not that keen – so when the person hears a “no” then it’s really no surprise.

Some Tips for Creating a Positive Impression

1. Project an impression of openness: The number one key to appearing warm and friendly is projecting an aura of openness. This is usually achieved by using open body language - which basically involves the following:

· Don’t cross your arms; allow them to hang naturally at your sides.

· Similarly, if you’re sitting down, keep your legs stretched out and uncrossed.

· Lean forward to show an interest in the other person.

· Stand up straight; don’t slouch.

· Smile (that helps to put both you and the other person at ease).

2. Pay attention to eye contact: Making good eye contact is essential as well. It indicates you’re happy to be talking to that person, are comfortable and confident, with nothing much to hide. However, if someone won’t meet our eye, it makes them seem a bit more shady (or it can simply send the message that you lack confidence.) Also, try to be natural and don’t stare at the person, as they’ll feel uncomfortable and want to escape.

3. Adjust your signals to the other person’s signals: An astute individual is also aware of, and can read the body language, of other people too. For example, if their non-verbal language seems quite closed and defensive, you may need to back off and give the person space.

4. Engage in Conversation: To create a great impression, you really want the other person to pick up the message that you think they’re wonderful! The best way to do that is to ask them open questions – so you find out all about them, and the things that interest them. For example, what kinds of things are they passionate about? What are their hopes and their dreams for the future? Then respond to their answers with other open questions - to build a fuller picture of what that person’s like.

7 Tips for Improving your Social Life

1. Ignore your feelings when they say to put walls … and actively decide to build a bridge instead.

2. Don’t compare yourself to others, or attack yourself. Appreciate your talents and the things that make you “you.”

3. Pay attention to your thoughts when you feel anxious or afraid. Imagine being successful, and relaxed, and popular.

4. Focus on what’s best in others; validate their gifts and strengths.

5. Avoid touchy topics; don’t be boring or offensive; and notice when it’s time to let another take the stage.

6. Try to focus more on others and the things that interest them. Avoid the trap of talking about me, me, me!

7. Be genuine and real – as that puts others at their ease … and others are more likely to be natural as well.

Successful Interviewing Tips

1. Before applying for a job, find out as much as you can about it – and make sure it’s something you want to do!

2. Also, find out what you can about the interviewers. For example, what are their names and job titles? What other jobs have they done in the past? You can often uncover a lot of information by simply googling peoples’ names and positions.

3. Try and find out about the company’s normal interviewing style. For example, is it likely to be one-on-one interview, or will you be interviewed by a couple of people, or will there be an interview panel? Also, will you be required to sit any kinds of test (general knowledge, case studies, IQ tests etc.)?

4. If possible, connect with others who have undergone a similar interview. Ask them for tips and ideas – or things to watch out for, or how best to prepare.

5. Research the company. It’s important to know as much as possible about the company’s history, what it does now, it’s plans for the future – and the expectations associated with the job.

6. Be clear about what you have to offer the company. It’s important that you match their needs to your experience, abilities and personality. Practising selling yourself to them!

7. If possible, rehearse the interview with a friend.

8. Pay attention to your appearance. Dress appropriately (err on the side of dressing conservatively); make sure you look tidy and smart; brush your hair and teeth; wear perfume or aftershave (but not so much that it’s overpowering).

9. Check out the directions is advance (if necessary drive there the day before to make sure you don’t get lost). Arrive 5 minutes early for the interview.

10. Be confident, respectful, polite, truthful, positive and enthusiastic. Think carefully before you respond – use proper grammar, and don’t speak too quickly.

How to Make Small Talk at Parties

What you should say and how you should act depends on the context and who’re you’re with … but here are a few general ideas:

1. Smile – It’s welcoming, warm, and makes you seem more approachable.

2. Compliment people all the time. Most people feel awkward and ill at ease. So try and find something that is worth complimenting. You’ll help them to relax and to feel more confident (and they’ll also feel more positive about, and around, you).

3. Try and have a few stories up your sleeve that you’ve used before, and that make people laugh. This is really helpful when things go quiet, and the conversation dries up for a while.

4. Say nice things about people you both know. It makes you seem trustworthy, and a loyal friend.

5. Encourage people to talk about themselves by asking open questions – then probing a bit more. But stick to safe topics – and try to keep things light.

6. Make sure you mingle well and don’t talk for too long. This takes off the pressure when you don’t know others well. It also make you look more confident and sociable.