Often unnoticed persistent background of fear, anger, and other destructive emotions undermines right about every aspect of our abilities. Soft skills are ones of the most affected. Especially, when things get tough and our balance, focus, and empathy are challenged the most.
If stressed, anxious or burned out, we can forget about LinkedIn’s top soft skills 2019: creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability, and time-management; or Google’s being a good coach, communicating and listening well, possessing insights into others (social awareness), empathy and support toward colleagues, critical thinking, problem-solving, connecting complex ideas.
Obviously, the future most wanted soft skills would be ‘packaged’ for specific industries/tasks, integrated with hard skills, magnified and often mediated by digital technologies. But not replaced by them.
Soft skills cannot be learned ‘the night before an exam’.
Like a foreign language, they would take years of study and practice to become functional. Much more so their core prerequisite — a non-production of stress, our ability to handle undesired scenarios and uncertainty in an uncompromised manner.
Soft skills and Emotional Intelligence competencies are organic outcomes of a balanced, compassionate mind. Stress, anxiety, destructive emotions are useful alarms, highlighting our exaggerated values, obsolete reactions, ill-will, and mental violence. An artificial burden that can be let go via the practice of mindfulness, worldview updates, reactions reframing, emotional hygiene, etc.
Addressing causes of stress so it does not arise [in contexts processed]
A common notion of stress inevitability is supported by temporarily relief/’band-aid’ solutions. They are easy to administer but lack long-term effect, — non-production of destructive emotions for previously triggering events. Procrastination via quick-fixes leads to damaging consequences since the internal causes of reactions are left intact: repetitions accumulate, firm up and lead to an escalation of agitation.
How do we work with stress, and any destructive states of mind so they are ‘not produced’ automatically by our unruly subconsciousness? The answer is always personal, based on existing emotional inclinations, culture, beliefs, ambitions, etc. More about effective Emotional Education.