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PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

6 Must-Have Soft Skills In 2021

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Emotional Intelligence

You probably know someone who is academically gifted but when it comes to their personal relationships they are so creepy or someone who is so successful in areas of business but they can’t just control their emotions or relate well with others. This is one of the most important skills you need to master and it is often overlooked or not properly understood or implemented but believe me without emotional intelligence you won’t go far.

Emotional intelligence (also known as Emotional Quotient) according to Help Guide organization can be defined as the ability or know how to use and manage your emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict. From this definition, you can see that emotional intelligence is a measure and we can assess ourselves and the good news is it can be mastered or improved. Just think of how you empathize with others, communicate, deal with challenges, stress, and conflicts. According to Daniel Goleman, the psychologist of emotional intelligence, he divided emotional intelligence into five main elements are Motivation, Empathy, Social Skills, Self-Awareness, Self-Regulation.

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Under self-awareness, we are looking at sub-components like emotional awareness which is the ability and considerations of your own emotions and those of others; self-confidence, and self-assessment. Under self-regulation we are looking at self-control, trustworthiness, adaptability, conscientiousness; Motivation we are looking at sub-components like your optimism and commitment; Empathy we are looking at things like understanding others and developing them, leveraging diversity and your ser-vice and lastly, under Social Skills, we are look-ing at things like influence, leadership, conflict-management, cooperation, and communication.


Emotional intelligence is a very important skill that affects every other part of your life, it affects your relationships, spirituality, health, school, work, relationships, etc. and why can’t we make an effort to work on it this 2021. Remember it as an ongoing journey, let’s just start and we keep going. By looking at the above components we can assess ourselves and improve accordingly. There are many ways and tools you can effectively use to improve your emotions that include recognizing and naming your emotions, asking for feedback, responding instead of reacting, maintaining a positive attitude, etc. I greatly advise you to get professional help particularly from an Emotional Intelligence coach and International Coaching and Mentoring Foundation (ICMF) boasts of qualified and top-notch ones.


Critical Thinking

Here is one best or on-demand skill especial-ly with employers or when you working on your project, startup, or business. Critical thinking is the ability to logically, rationally, and clearly think through situations and problems to effectively solve them. Critical Thinking is self-directed, self-discipline, self-monitored, and self-corrective thinking. To improve the critical thinking skills you need to be observant, curious, intro-spect, identify biases, and being objective in your approaches. You also need to analyze the problem at hand and determine possible out-comes or what you need to achieve which is to identify and reframe the real problem.

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Negotiation

How well do you negotiate through situations, deals, and dealing with others? Negotiation is a method by which we humans settle our differences, remember that as human be-ings we will also have differences, we will not necessarily agree from the point go, have the same line of thinking, etc. Negotiation skills are the qualities that allow to or more parties to compromise or agree while trying to avoid argument and dispute
Negotiation is used in many situations for example business, relationships, family, government & international systems, and many others.

art of negotiation

Negotiation includes skills and ability to effectively communicate, pursued, strategize and cooperate, rapport building, and decision making. For every negotiation you must set your goal upfront, what is it that you want to get out of the negotiation process, don’t just negotiate for the sake of negotiation but you should set clear what you want of the negotiation process. You have to have your best or highest that you can go for; what is the least or lowest you can go for and what’s your plan B (if it fails to work). With persuasion, you are able to convince others to buy into you, support your ideas, take action, support you, etc.


Team Work & Collaboration

Life is not a solo journey, it is all about teamwork and collaborations. Even for business, if you aim to go big you need to have a team and according to Jack Ma, “You need the right people with you, not the best people”. Sometimes we need the right people, the people who believe in the same vision as you, who want to work with you, and who fits into what you intend o achieve. Teamwork and collaboration are a mixture of interpersonal, problem solving, and communication skills needed for a group to effectively work together for an intended cause or towards a common goal.

team work

The main difference between teamwork and collaboration is that teamwork each individual is working individually whilst with collaboration they work collaboratively. Teamwork and collaboration help increase efficiency and productivity by maximizing on each other’s specialities, skills, talents, capabilities, strengths and weaknesses. Each can effectively focus on what they can do best and it helps boost productivity. Instead of going after you won, here we are able to work towards the group’s common goals. High-performance teams include members with a balance of skills, diversity of knowledge, perspectives, views, gender, race, age, views etc.


Time Management

They always say time is money and it is the currency of life, we have to take care and properly use our time. management is an essential skill that we master in 2021 beyond and this is will mean that you are able to work smarter and do more in less time. According to Wikipedia, time management is the process of planning and exercising conscious control of time spent on specific activities, especially to increase effectiveness, efficiency, and productivity.


Time management comes with many benefits that include stress relief, more time by properly scheduling and doing things on time among many others. There are many tips for time management to try out that include setting time limits for each task, having a to-do-list and following on it diligently, prioritizing and removing non-essential tasks, and setting SMART goals. To succeed in time-management you need to be focused on your life and goals as it helps you to effectively achieve more in less time.


Adaptability

With the ever-growing demand for modern life and uncertainties, it now demands that we be more adaptable like never before. Adaptability can be defined as one’s flexibility or ability to quickly respond to changing trends, innovation, destabilization, etc. To become more adaptable you need to be growth-orientated, always seeking ways and opportunities to grow and make yourself better. Another way is always to be on the look-out for change, trends, innovation, etc. especially within your line of industry, community, economy, and societies, and go beyond that but to embrace and accept the change that comes with it.

It requires you to be flexible that means learning something new, gain a new skill or behavior. Adaptability is very important also when working on projects, developing strategies, and implementing new ideas. It allows you to survive, develop, create, learn, and succeed in life as it encompasses a lot of elements such as positive thinking, self-management, and decision-making skills.

MOTIVATION

Africa My Motherland

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By: Lesley Machimbidza

It is such a worrying issue when my fellow Africans look at the continent’s underdevelopment and blame it on the various head of states and those who are in influential positions. The truth is that Africa’s underdevelopment is supposed to be attributed to the lack of passion that we Africans exude towards our continent.

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During the early stages of socialization, a child is instilled with the belief that he or she is an African and he has to know that they are inferior to other races. I grew up in a family where I was told that to have a better life, I ought to work hard, earn certificates and qualifications and fly to the west or the east to graze on the so-called “greener pastures”. I lived with such a dream for quite a while in my life but I have only realized that it is drawing the continent behind.

Why do we need to go to other continents to be who we wish to be? Why can’t we be who we want to be in our continent? There is an old saying which says “home is best” but in Africa, it seems like it is non-existent as most Africans have considered leaving their various home countries to stay in other continents. We are responsible for the lack of development that our continent faces because we use the gifts, talents, and endowments that we have for the benefit of other continents. Most of the educated Africans and talented individuals have since left our continent and have gone to render their services and skills to other continents which end up benefitting out of it. It is irrational of us as Africans, we are not be forced to leave the continent, we are leaving it ourselves. After we get established out there, we forget of our roots, we forget our foundation and we even point fingers at our fellow kinsman who would have remained behind at home.

If Africa has to be great, it needs us as Africans to be passionate about it. All the ‘spaghetti roads’ and tech-oriented life that is in other continents can be achieved in Africa as long we put up our minds on it and work on solving the problems that are being faced by the continent. All we need is unity and team spirit as we tackle the problems we have in our continent. If we are to see Africa being prosperous, we need to unite as Africans and make a positive impact on it rather than fleeing to other continents.

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The reason why we are referred to as an inferior race is that our actions and way of doing things shows it. We ought to show that our continent is the best and it takes us as Africans. Let us work hard, let us persevere, and change our continent. We have the resources, we have the facilities and it takes us as Africans to bring change to it. Embrace being African, after all, BLACK IS BEAUTY!!

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FINANCIAL INTELLIGENCE

14 Ways To Earn Passive Income In 2021

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passive income

By: Claire Makoni

Earn Songwriting Royalties

If you love to write music, you can create passive income by recording your songs and then publishing them through a variety of channels. You earn royalties anytime your music is played on streaming services like Apple Music, or Spotify, or played on the radio. You can even license your music for TV, movies, and videos without the backing of a major record label.

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Purchase Music Royalties

Perhaps your talent isn’t to write music. That’s ok, you can still get into the music royalty game by purchasing the rights to song catalogues owned by other artists. Royalty Exchange is an online auction that allows you to bid on existing music catalogues. These are songs that are already earning regular, passive income for their current owners. When you purchase music royalties, you’re buying the future cash flow, which is purely passive income.

Photo Licensing

Photographers can build passive income by selling stock photos online. You’ll need to produce lots of content to earn a decent amount of money, but it can be a nice supplement to other, more labor-intensive work, like wedding or family photography. One benefit to stock photo licensing is that you can sell the same pictures to many different buyers. There is no shortage of stock photo websites where you can sell your work. Dreamstime and Snapwire are just two of the more popular stock photo sites out there.

Record an Audiobook

One of the best ways for content creators to increase their income is by releasing their content in as many formats as possible. For example, if you’ve written a paperback book or even an ebook, you’ll want to consider recording an audiobook version. There is no shortage of people who prefer listening to books instead of reading them. You can record the audio yourself, or pay someone else to do it for you. Once your audiobook is ready to go, it can be available for purchase online for years, making it the ideal passive income source.

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Buy and Sell Domain Names

Buying and selling domain names is a bit like trading on the stock market. The goal is to buy low and sell high, but there can be some risk involved. There are people who earn good money buying domain names that they believe will increase in value over time, with the hopes of selling at a profit.

Start a Blog

Over time, it’s possible to create multiple passive income streams with a blog, through affiliate marketing, or display advertising, for example. But building a blog from scratch is anything but passive. You’ll need to be consistent in creating new content, and spend time promoting your blog. One of the best things about blogging is the low barrier of entry. If you have a computer and a wifi connection, you can get started for as little as a few dollars per month.

Start a Podcast

It seems everyone has a podcast these days, and while many people do it out of pure enjoyment, there’s a lot of money that can be made. As you build a reliable following, you can begin selling advertising via sponsorships to brands that wish to get in front of your audience. Make no mistake, there’s a lot of work involved in finding guests and conducting interviews, but the opportunity to build a passive income stream is there.

Start a YouTube Channel

If you can consistently create videos that people want to watch, you can build an audience on Youtube. This is important because, with an audience, you can begin to make money, by joining the YouTube Partner Program. Most of your earnings will come from ads, which are aired within your video content, however, there are more ways to make money. YouTube can also drive traffic to your website and social media channels, making passive income opportunities endless.

Sell Digital Products/Downloadables

Thousands of people earn passive income by creating digital products that people can download and use. From spreadsheets to productivity tools, calendars, and checklists, the possibilities are endless. Once you’ve created your winning product, you can make it available for download on your own website, or through a third-party platform.

Develop an Online Course

If you have expertise in a specific area, rest assured there’s someone out there willing to pay you for your knowledge. You can create an ebook on the topic, or develop an online course, and then sell it on your own website, or on an online learning marketplace like Udemy. No skill is too small to share with others. You could sell a course on creating a killer resume, starting a podcast, or how to travel hack a trip to Europe. With online courses, most of the hard work happens early on, when you’re creating the content. From there, with an effective marketing strategy, you’ll have yourself a nice, passive income stream.

Run Website Display Ads

If you have your own website, you can sign up to have ads displayed within the content on your site. The most well-known ad service is Google Adsense. Adsense displays ads that are relevant to your site content and that match your visitor’s preferences. When guests engage with an ad, you make money. Also, the higher your site traffic, the higher your income.

Affiliate Marketing

If you have your own blog or website, one of the best ways to make passive income is through affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing involves promoting someone else’s product or service, and earning a commission whenever a sale is generated directly from your recommendation. The most well-known affiliate program may be the one run by online retail giant Amazon, but there are thousands of other companies with programs of their own. Affiliate income takes time to build, but if you’re successful, it can be one of the best ways to make passive income.

Dropshipping

Dropshipping is a form of e-commerce where the seller doesn’t hold the product, instead, it’s shipped to the customer directly from the supplier. The seller’s job is to find products to buy at a wholesale price, and then sell them at the retail price, by advertising them through an e-commerce store, like Shopify. When orders are placed, they go directly to the supplier who ships the product to the customer. The seller profits from the spread between the retail and wholesale price. Dropshipping has become very competitive, but if you can find a product that people want, and sell it at a profit, there’s lots of passive income to be made.

Learn to Outsource

If you’re an entrepreneur, chances are you have a tendency to want to control all aspects of your business. After all, no one else understands it as you do, nor is anyone else as invested as you are. But the problem with doing everything yourself is that the money you make becomes anything but passive.

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LIFE

India: The More You Know

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By: Fatima Shakir

India, you have probably heard of it, second most populated country, one of the world’s fastest-growing economies and the land of the most interesting food in the world. But there’s probably a lot of things you don’t know. For example, did you know that India introduced the aspect of shampoo to the world? Among many facts about India, this one is the biggest source of amazement. The first-ever shampoo was used by locals in India. Dried Indian gooseberry mixed with many other herbs was used to wash hair, a recipe that is still used in the country today. The word ‘shampoo’ is derived from the Hindi word, champo.

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India is amazing, and not just because that’s where shampoo came from. India is a culturally diverse and interesting country. The country occupies the greater part of South Asia. Its capital is New Delhi, built in the 20th century just south of the historic hub of Old Delhi to serve as India’s administrative center. Its government is a constitutional republic that represents a highly diverse population consisting of thousands of ethnic groups and likely hundreds of languages.

 India is home to numerous languages, including Sanskrit which is one of the oldest languages in the world. Other languages such as Hindi are commonly spoken throughout the Indian subcontinent, with regional variations. As India is a land of diversity, different types of languages are found across different places in India. Each area has its own languages and people love speaking their mother tongues. There are innumerable speakers as well as innumerable languages prevailing in India. The prominent languages in India besides English and Hindi are Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Urdu, Gujarati, Punjabi, and many more.

Apart from its many religions and sects, India is home to innumerable castes and tribes, as well as to more than a dozen major and hundreds of minor linguistic groups from several language families unrelated to one another. Religious minorities, including Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Jains, still account for a significant proportion of the population; collectively, their numbers exceed the populations of all countries except China. Because of the population diversity, there is immense variety in Indian culture. The Indian culture is a blend of various cultures belonging to diverse religions, castes, regions that follow their own tradition and culture.

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One of the most culturally prevalent aspects of Indian societies is festivals. There are different types of festivals celebrated in India with joy and happiness. Different people celebrate different festivals as per their religion, caste and culture. People celebrate National festivals like Independence Day, Republic Day, and Gandhi Jayanti. They also celebrate religious festivals like Diwali, Holi, Durga Puja, Dussehra, Vasant Panchami, Eid, Guru Nanak Jayanti, Mahavir Jayanti, Buddha Purnima, Christmas, New Year, and many more. The young generation also celebrates Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Friendship day, etc. The various festivals show the vast variety of cultural diversity present in India.

The discussion on Indian culture would remain incomplete without discussing dance forms of India. India is a land of diverse dance forms. The most popular classical dance forms are Bharatnatyam, Kathakali, Kathak, Manipuri, etc. Folk dances are mainly performed in any occasion like birth of a child, festivals, harvesting seasons, wedding events, etc. The folk dances include Gaur Dance, Chhau Dance, Bihu Dance, Dumhal Dance, Padayani Dance, Dollu Kunitha Dance, Dandiya Dance, and many more. These are celebrated on different occasions by the people of India.

 Music is something that has existed from the beginnings of Indian culture. These are vital elements of Indian culture and a part of human life. There are different instruments like drums, cymbals, etc. Singing is common during festivities and celebrations. These musical instruments can produce different types of melodic sounds that are pleasant to hear and make the body calm. In the early ages, there were Kalidas, Surdas, Tulsidas, Kabir, etc. who were popular for their music and songs. The diversity of Indian culture is reflected in Indian music. There are different forms of music, such as ghazals, Shayari, folk music, and many more. There were many legends that created music in India like Ustad Bismillah Khan, Ustad Zakir Hussain, and Pandit Ravi Shankar, etc. They are great pioneers in their own field. Also, it is worth mentioning that, presently, the Indian music industry also has many musicians and singers like Sonu Nigam, Alka Yagnik, Lata Mangeshkar, Kishore Kumar, Abhijeet, Arijit Singh, etc.

Art, literature, theater, and film (including the world-famous Bollywood films), and architecture have flourished in India for centuries and they continue to flourish today. The Ramayana is one of the oldest known epic works of literature. India is full of talents in the field of art or architecture. Indian Art includes paintings, rangoli, plastic arts like pottery, and textile arts like woven silk, etc. From Ancient ages, paintings are a part of India art. Examples include paintings of Ajanta cave and the Paintings of the Ellora cave.

It seems that wherever you turn in India you will come across a site of historic, natural, or cultural importance. India is rich in heritage, and some of the main UNESCO world heritage sites in India are listed below:

  • The Taj Mahal: Tourists flock from all over the world to see this resplendent seventeenth century mausoleum.
  • The Great Himalayan National Park: This national park is situated at the base of the world’s tallest mountain.
  • Agra Fort: The Yumana river flows serenely past this ancient fort in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
  • The Elephant Caves: Deep inside these spooky caves you will find elegant statues and designs carved by the human hand.
  • The Western Ghats: These mountains are renowned for their mysterious forests and their wildlife sanctuaries.

India is a diverse and beautiful land that is full of amazing people, places, and things. Visiting the country is like exploring a unique mix of modernity and traditions. It is big, beautiful, and beaming.

Compiled by

Fatima Shakir.

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