Social skills for studying in Australia

social skills

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Social skills are something that’s necessary during our whole lives -they help us understand the social rules and relations and connect with others verbally and non verbally. Adolescence is a time in life when these skills are extremely important – especially if you’re going to university.

The transition from high school to college can be painful, confusing and socially overwhelming. As far as we know, most Australian professors are encouraging and friendly towards their students. However, problems usually come up when students need to interact with each other.

Everyone can learn how to interact successfully with peers, professors and roommates – you just need some good will and training. University is not just a time for studying and building our future careers, but a period when we grow as people and form significant bonds with others.

We tried to make a list of “people skills” that are essential at the college level of education and that can make studying in Australia both successful and enjoyable!

 

Taking the initiative

Even if you’re a shy person, you can practice interpersonal skills that will help you open up a bit. Also, we know that there are other, “naturally” reserved persons who really don’t like socialising and networking. However, during studies, other students don’t want to try too hard over someone who seems closed and not willing to communicate.

Put some effort in and make the first step – people will appreciate it greatly.Start with casual chatting with your classmates. Invite them to a cup of coffee, try to organise a study group or informal gathering. Ask if anyone needs help with their studies or don’t hesitate to ask for help yourself. Avoid being pushy – taking the initiative doesn’t mean you have to assume total control. Be relaxed and take it easy.

 

Negotiation skills

Negotiation skill is something everyone needs sooner or later. Most people believe that it’s a skill you will use when you get a job or start your own business. However, this is a skill that should be learned at an earlier age. Negotiation training and education make people better mediators and “solution influencers”.

This interpersonal skill helps people resolve conflicts in every area of their life, whether it’s a business, family dispute or communication with fellow students and professors. With the help of negotiation skills – everybody can win.

 

Assertiveness

Assertiveness encompasses a big number of social skills. Those may come naturally to some – you may think that assertive people are born this way. However, the less lucky majority has to practice these skills by going to assertiveness training (AT) and reading self-help literature. This is a skill that is essential for both solving interpersonal conflicts and self-growth. It allows you to have a high self-esteem and communicate honestly, without being aggressive or wishing to harm or manipulate others.

Practicing assertiveness can help shy and passive people as well as those who are prone to conflicts. Assertive persons are less insecure and sensitive to criticism, more cooperative and have better control over anger. The good thing about this skill – it can be learned through a series of techniques. Also, you will attract other assertive people to socialise with you and inspire those who are less assertive to change.

 

Listening and relating to others

The ability of relating to others is strongly connected to the aforementioned social skills. People who easily relate to almost anyone are those who try to understand and listen to people around them. They usually sympathize with others and understand their point of view even if they do not agree.

Also, listening actively to people takes much time but it’s highly rewarding. Listen to others without interruption and think about what the other person said. Also, ask people questions about themselves and be curious. People will realize that your interest in them is genuine and they will respond in kind.

 

A great sense of humor

The last but not the least important social skill is a sense of humour. People love to spend their time with humorous friends and those who have a positive outlook on life. Great sense of humour is a sign of intelligence and developed people skills, so don’t hesitate to use it whenever you can.

Alex Pejak is an economist currently working on a few projects in Australia. She is passionate about market research and project management. She is also interested in topics related to business IT and career development.

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