After seeing winners or go-getters, we often wonder, ‘What are the things that set them apart? or ‘What are the things that given them an edge over others?’ No, you don’t need to be a telepath like Professor Charles Xavier or a master of Mystic arts like Dr. Strange (Though we have already seen, despite their capabilities, how Wanda defeated them both). You need to adapt & polish your Qualities to Give You an Edge.
In this highly competitive world, keeping extra arrows in your quiver is always wise so you don’t run out of them in vital moments. Some qualities can give you a true edge in your professional & personal life.
Qualities To Give You An Edge
1. Always Be Keen To Learn
Intense openness to learn is one such quality. Turning off the TV & turning on learning opportunities may sound easy, but only sometimes. It is easy to get distracted by TV shows or social media. However, you must stay focused on things that help you to grow. You must upgrade your input – & that counts what you read, watch, & listen to.
Thriving for professional & personal development is also vital. You must invest in your learning. If you lack the skills to survive the current world, the world will render you unnecessary. A way of doing that is finding accountability partners – a trusted friend, a mentor, or a family member – to help you to stay focused & motivated to learn.
Always remember, there is nothing called surplus knowledge. Learn about things outside of your industry if you find them appealing. Someday, those can open a new door for you.
2. Willingness To Step Out Of Comfort Zone
Courage & motivation to step out of your comfort zone is one of such Qualities to Give You An Edge over others. We often create a comfort zone around us to protect us from outside discomforts. These comfort zones provide us with a feeling of security & satisfaction. We get so comfortable inside of it we often don’t consider it is preventing us from growing.
If you really want to have the edge over others, you must break free of your comfort zone & challenge yourself. You must be eager to push yourself into uncomfortable situations to discover whether you can survive them. In that process, you can discover your strengths & weaknesses. Detailed knowledge of your strengths & weaknesses will undoubtedly offer you an edge over others.
3. Stay Motivated
Ask yourself, ‘What’s Your Competitive Edge?‘ Do you always bubble with inspiration? If yes, you already have the edge over others. Though sometimes it can be hard to maintain the same level of motivation due to unforeseen events & unexpected setbacks. No matter what happens, always keep sight of your prize.
You must have some dreams of your dream destiny & prize. Keep remembering them to stay motivated. After a hard day, your body is aching & you are feeling drained out. You don’t want to get out of bed the next day.
Think about the life after retirement you have in your mind. You are relaxing in a cottage near a sea beach while the sun sets, enjoying your favorite drink & snacks. Keep playing those pictures in your head repeatedly. You will get up as recharged as a racehorse.
4. Be Grateful
Right now, you may not have the things you want. Right now, you feel you deserve more. It happens to all of us. But don’t neglect the things you have right now. They are your asset & they are helping you to go on. You may not be content in your small two rooms apartment.
Let me assure you, you are more fortunate than many people who need to spend their nights under the open sky as they lost their homes in an earthquake.
You may be tired of eating the same meal over & over again but can’t afford dinner in a fancy restaurant. Consider the fact that nearly 805 million people worldwide go hungry every day. You may aspire for a bigger car; think about the 10-year-old war orphan wanting a family. You have many things to be grateful for.
Try to make a gratitude journal. Note the things you are feeling thankful for on that particular day. A little puppy licked your hand. Note that down. A colleague offered you a coffee. Something to feel good about. Enjoyed a nice walk in the park? Include that too. You will find these little pieces of happiness go a long way to keep you motivated & happy.
5. Sharpen Your Creativity
Regardless of your industry, employers value people with creativity & out-of-the-box thinking. Therefore, it is vital to hone your creativity. Try to bring out your creativity & apply them in your professional field. You can offer unique ideas regarding handling an issue or provide insights about a recent project that has yet to be thought of.
Sometimes those ideas may seem whacky or crazy but don’t be demoralized if they get discarded. Suppose everything & everyone fails to address the issue. In that case, your solution will be all they are left with & when the results come, they will appreciate & acknowledge the uniqueness & fruitfulness of your idea. Creativity is something that lets us bring the best ideas together.
6. Be Ready To Tackle Adversity
In personal & professional life, at some point, we all get beaten down. After being knocked down, you have a simple choice: stay down or get back on your feet. Failure is a common factor, especially if you are in a high-performing job. To achieve success, you must be able to defeat failure & adversity.
Be aware of the fact that life doesn’t always go as you planned. There will be setbacks, accidents, and unpredicted events to dampen your spirit. You must hope for the best but prepare for the worst. If you respond to setbacks more positively, you can get an advantage. All of us encounter obstacles in our personal & professional life. Expect them & be ready to tackle them.
7. Be Adaptive
The world is changing fast. You should change too & be flexible to adapt. Dinosaurs got extinct as they couldn’t adapt. But cockroaches are still here. The job opportunities & technologies of today may have yet to exist 10 years ago & job opportunities & technologies nowadays may be obsolete after 5 years. The world is changing that fast.
Even 10 years ago, there were typing schools in every lane where people used to learn typing on typewriters to provide themselves an edge in the job market. Now typewriters have become obsolete & basic computer schools are disappearing gradually. Kids are getting basic computer knowledge from their parents.
It is not only about technology; it is about skills, too. Be open to learning new skills to adapt to the coming era, or you already know what happened to dinosaurs & mammoths.
Try To Be Diplomatic
There are many Qualities to Give You An Edge, but being & thinking like a Diplomat can provide you some real edge over the others. A sense of when & where to say something & do the right things shows consideration & compassion towards other people’s feelings & their situation.
Diplomacy is a valuable skill to have, particularly when managing delicate matters. Remember to value the non-technical skills you have earned from your life and work, no matter how ordinary they seem. A sign of true diplomacy is they always value & consider other people’s opinions & situations. They always go for a win-win deal through effective communication.
Q: Does having these qualities always ensure a win?
A: Apart from these qualities, hard work, passion & dedication can always ensure a win.
Q: Many people may possess these qualities; how can I be sure to succeed?
A: Everyone of us has different skills, different capabilities, different educational backgrounds, and different experiences. That’s what makes us unique. Invest in your uniqueness.
Q: What if I am unaware of my qualities?
A: Look hard into yourself to find them. You can ask a trusted friend, family member, colleague, or mentor about them.