New Life Skills

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We need different skills throughout our lives, to help us develop and grow so that we can live healthy, enjoyable, meaningful and successful lives!  Some of these skills are part of our normal development such as feeding and dressing ourselves, walking and running.  Some skills we learn from our parents, teachers and others, such as tying our shoes, riding a bike, driving a car, cooking, cleaning, managing money, reading and math, playing an instrument, creating art, participating in a sport, learning a trade and so forth.   As we learn these skills we gain self-confidence, self responsibility and greater independence and we are able to function more effectively in our lives and in the world.

As we continue to mature and develop, we need to learn different skills such as communication and social skills, conflict resolution, healthy emotional expression and others.  These skills help us grow in our self-awareness and empowerment and help us to have healthier and happier relationships.

Some of the most important skills are the ones that help us to live healthier lives, feel better, be more productive and successful, manage life crisis and illness more effectively and have a better quality of life.  These skills are not taught in school, although it would be great if they were.  They’d be much more useful than learning about “square roots” or “Pi,” since few people use these skills after they leave school.  Most people would benefit a lot more from learning skills that help us to decrease and manage the stress in our lives, increase our sense of well-being and relaxation; skills that increase our vitality and energy and help us learn to use it more consciously, as well as skills that protect and clear our energy field. 

We would have greater mastery over our lives if we learn to increase our awareness and improve our attitude, improve our brain functioning (i.e., thinking, memory, performance), learn healthy ways to balance, release and express our emotions, and learn to live more consciously.  Many of these lifeskills are research proven and include biofeedback, journaling, breath work, movement, social support, energy management, self-acceptance, meditation, guided imagery, brain exercises and more.

Most of us are not aware of how important our brains are and we never do anything to support them.  We may care for our teeth and our hair and even exercise our bodies, but most of us never exercise our brains.  We may keep feeding our brains new information but are we aware of the food, water, supplements, oxygen, thoughts and images that our brains need to function at their best?  We get tune-ups for our cars but we forget to tune-up our brains.  Brain exercise can help us connect and balance the right and left sides of our brains and strengthen the connection from our brains to our bodies.  These exercises, combined with breath work, imagery, massage, tapping and acupressure can help us keep thoughts and emotions from getting stuck and increase the flow of blood to the parts of our brain that help us with memory and higher level thinking, learning and processing.  It even helps our brain move out of stress response and survival mode to a state of thriving and higher states of consciousness.  This improves our mental fitness, our outlook on life, our productivity and our potential!

These lifeskills which you have been reading about help us by transforming the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and social dimensions of our lives.  They are holistic and multi-dimensional.  They combine traditional, alternative and complementary approaches to promote healing, growth, optimal health and well-being and increase our power and productivity.  As we use these skills we become more empowered, more self-responsible and self-aware and we increase our level of self care.  These skills are practical, fun and easy to learn, and can be used immediately when needed.

Jill Ann Marks is a Holistic Psychologist and Lifeskills Coach

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