One of the things that keep me going despite the blogging industry’s stiff competition is my competence. I always find ways to do something more compared to others to get ahead of the competition. It is not surprising that I have to do this since 90% of the websites on the internet fail. Thus, to survive in this space, I need to stay competitive. What makes me competent, and what makes me stay this way is what this article will talk about. Thus, how do you stay and maintain competence?
Here’s how do we maintain competence.
- Talk Less and Listen More
- Never Stop Learning
- Learn How To Live With Uncertainty
- Ask for Feedback
- Always Find Ways To Challenge Yourself
- Do Not Give Up
- Learn To Decide and Follow Your Decisions
- Don’t Be Arrogant
- Take Things Slow
- Have a Competent Circle of Friends
These are the things that keep me going despite sometimes, the tides are not in my favor. Of course, as a human, I also have some times where I feel down and not in the mood to do things. However, these tips helped me stay consistent in being competitive.
Here’s a more definite answer in case you want to know the root of competence. How do we stay and maintain competence?
In general, we can stay and maintain our competence by not being arrogant. This means that one should always have a beginner’s mindset or the mindset that never stops learning. This mindset keeps us better every time and helps us stay above the competition.
Now, we have to discuss each item in the list so it can easily be understood. These are the things that make us stay competent in life.
1. Talk Less and Listen More
One of the key characteristics of people who stay competent is that they talk less and listen more. By doing this, they can learn more from others. Also, talking less makes them prone to fewer errors or mistakes. This key characteristic of competent people makes them irreplaceable.
I know that talking less and listening more is hard for almost all of us. All of us have some sort of story we wish to tell everyone.
However, if we want to stay competitive, we have to talk less. This is because by talking less, we get more information than we give.
The importance of receiving information rather than giving is that we learn more by listening to others. The more we listen to others, the more we learn about things in life.
To be consistently competitive, we have to always learn new things. By talking too much about ourselves, we won’t learn anything new. Also, people who always talk about themselves are usually branded as arrogant, and people don’t want to be around arrogant people.
Furthermore, talking a lot makes us prone to mistakes. As a general rule, the more you talk, the more your mistakes.
Talking a lot can bring a lot of mistakes and can spell disaster to our career.
Of course, we have to talk, but make sure to always talk about things that make sense. Talking about senseless things makes us look less competitive since it can look like we are not serious at all.
Since we are all humans, there are times that we just want to relax and talk about our lives. But no being serious in talking has its place, and it is surely not in the career space.
There is a place for everything but in places where you have to show competence, talking a lot should not be there.
2. Never Stop Learning
You can be competent by always having a beginner’s mindset. Being competent means that you never stop learning, and you should always find new things to learn along the way. This means that you should always learn new things making you ahead of the competition.
We now live in an environment where the progress of things such as technology quickly goes up. Before, 480p videos look so clear to us but right now, we are always looking for 4k videos to experience high-quality video. There are also 6k video recorders for more quality content.
That is the same for our career and competence. You can be the most competent person 10 years before but right now, the environment is not usually the same.
Right now, most people who experience success use technology to their advantage. They can have all the tools in the app on their phones and it makes them more productive and efficient compared to others.
For example, you might be looking ways to stay competitive, that’s why you came to this article. Before, we have to look for things in the library so it might take hours to get the information we need.
Right now, just a search on the internet will bring you that information.
Imagine someone very competitive before that won’t have any idea how to do an internet search, who would be faster in gathering information? You or him/her?
That’s why we should always learn. Competence is always about learning new things. It is bad to have a mindset that you already know everything thus, you don’t need to learn more.
Learning doesn’t stop in the university.
But if you are a student and if you want to be more competitive in your schoolwork, then I have an article that gives tips on how to be a successful and hardworking student. I used those tips myself and I became a lecturer at age 22: How to Be a Hardworking Student [20 Tips]
On staying competitive, we have to admit that it is a life-long learning process. Much like me being an advocate of productivity still listening to podcasts and reading books daily to improve myself.
I am also always looking for ways to make my blog better, faster, and minimalistic but beautiful. That is because even now, I am still learning new about blogging since the trend changes a lot.
3. Learn How To Live With Uncertainty
People who stay competent know how to live with uncertainty. This is because life will always give us new things and change will always be a part of life. Staying competent means that we have to get used to uncertainty and learn to adjust depending on the situation.
Life is very uncertain. No one knows what will happen a month or a year after.
But as someone who stays competent, I need to deal with uncertainty. So should you.
For example, in my case, I don’t know if this article will be big and how many people will see this article.
I only know one thing.
The more I publish, the higher the likelihood of people coming to this website.
I’ve learned to live with uncertainty where I am not sure if any of my articles will reach a person. I just know that I have to make as many articles as possible.
Since life is very uncertain, people who are competent know that there is only one thing they can control. That is their reaction.
If your reaction to uncertainty is to just give up and lie in your bed then it is wrong. Uncertainty will affect everyone and only the people who can work amidst the uncertainty will succeed.
So if you want to be competitive, learn to live with uncertainty. Learn to look for things you can do at the moment. Never give up and always find opportunities.
Because sometimes, life brings opportunities because of its uncertainty.
4. Ask for Feedback
Competent people are always looking for feedback on their work. This is because they know that there will be times where they will commit an error. Asking for positive criticism makes them feel humbled and at the same time see things they can improve upon.
I believe that people who ask for feedback are the bravest.
This is because they are trying to be ready for whatever criticism others will give them.
For example, before I can write like this, I took lots of criticism from people. Since I am still improving, I am getting criticisms until today.
I know how hard it is to swallow our ego and take criticism from others. But look at it this way.
They are criticizing because they are looking at your work from a different angle. We tend to see our works as perfect because we give our best in it. While it is good for our eyes, it might not be for others.
That’s why it is important to ask for feedback from others. They have a different view from us.
Furthermore, criticisms make us humble. Being humble makes us susceptible to new learnings and will improve us more every time.
Thus, the improvement from criticisms makes people stay competent.
That is why I always emphasize the importance of being true to yourself and your values. It is important to stay true and clear on you so that you won’t get lost in the way. If you are interested in my article showing details on why it’s important, then here is the article: What is the importance of having clear values in life?
5. Always Find Ways To Challenge Yourself
Competent people always find new ways to challenge themselves simply because they know that challenges are the ones that bring fast improvement. People who are challenged are the ones that improve fast and make them more competent in life.
What separates ordinary from world-class athletes is that they always find ways to challenge themselves.
For example, top martial artists always find enemies that are stronger and stronger so they will be challenged.
Swimmers are always looking for ways to beat their own personal records. Basketball players are finding ways to challenge themselves to shoot more free throws.
Challenges make life hard and fun. For me, challenges are hard because it lets us release our true potential. We need to have some hardships in order to see our full potential. it is also fun because I see what I am capable of.
If you want to stay competent, you have to know your limits. By challenging yourself, you will know your limits and you add a little more challenge to improve your limits.
6. Do Not Give Up
People who stay competent know that giving up is not an option. The reason for this is because giving up will prevent them from taking the results of their labor. Giving up in the middle will make our effort in vain. The only thing giving up does is making us the loser.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu(BJJ) is one of the hardest martial art to earn a black belt. In fact, it takes about 12 years on average to get a black belt in the said martial art.
But there is a saying in BJJ that is famous for almost all practitioners.
” Black belts are white belters that didn’t give up.”
The only thing that separates the black belters from the white belters is that they didn’t give up. On average, it takes 12 years to achieve a black belt in BJJ, and only the ones that didn’t give up got that belt.
That’s the same in being competent in life. If we give up, we lost everything. All our efforts will be for nothing. Nobody wants that and competent people also know that.
Thus, if you want to stay competent, do not ever give up.
7. Learn To Decide and Follow Your Decisions
Competent people are true to their word. They know that times are uncertain and they need to make decisions. They can’t let uncertainty prevent them from deciding on things to do. Once they make their decisions, they will follow them without giving up.
It is normal for people to not have any decisions when times are tough.
The problem is that the most important decision in life comes when times are tough.
For example, when I decided to make this website bigger, I am at a time of my life where I am so down. I lost my job and I feel like my life is going nowhere.
Thus, I decided to just do my best to make a website that will not just help people but also to make turn it into a business.
That decision sticks with me until now. Although my site is actually getting bigger and bigger weekly judging on the data, I still know its uncertainty.
The reason for that growth is that I stick by my decision. I am going to do my best to make this site bigger. Despite the uncertainty, I will follow and stand by my decision.
Remember that the most important things that can happen to a person’s life usually happens when times are tough. Thus, we have to be decisive and trust the decision we’ve made.
8. Don’t Be Arrogant
The biggest enemy of competent people is arrogance. The reason for this is that arrogance will prevent people from learning new things. In time, arrogance makes them lose their skills in a world full of changes which in turn makes them less competent.
Perhaps the biggest enemy of competence is arrogance. Arrogrance usually brings downfall even to very successful people.
It usually happens because the person trusts himself or herself so much that they don’t want to learn new things or thinks that they deserve all the good things.
There are 2 ways they can fail after doing this.
One is that they stopped learning new things so they are very susceptible to changes. This makes them lose their competence with time.
Two is because they trust themselves so much, they start taking work or projects that are way larger than what they can really do. This happens a lot to big companies who think they can always succeed.
To make the second problem worse, because they don’t want to learn anything new, they can’t find a way to succeed since the project is bigger than them in the first place.
Thus, arrogance is the problem of competent people. Even people who are extremely confident and successful will have a hard time battling arrogance.
Remember to be humble at all times.
9. Take Things Slow
The issue with people who want to stay competent is they take lots of projects at the same time. This makes them fragment their time and attention to all of these things which makes it harder to see any results. This ultimately leads to burnout which destroys competence.
The beginner mistake of people who wants to become competent is that they take as many projects as possible.
For example, if you are new to the business, you will start to see a lot of income opportunities.
The problem with that is it is very tempting to take all of those opportunities for ourselves.
We are not good at multitasking. We don’t function well with doing multiple projects at the same time.
For example, when I started making websites, I’ve found a lot of opportunities. I made lots of websites and nothing succeeded.
This is because I am working on all 4 of them at the same time. Now, I learned my lesson and focused on this website. The result?
I got a 50% increase in traffic in just 2 months after focusing on this site which is way better and it keeps my motivation up.
If you want to stay competent for longer and see results, learn to focus on one thing.
10. Have a Competent Circle of Friends
Competent people know that hanging out with people who share a different vision as theirs will passively affect their mindset. This means that if you hang out with people who are also competent, you will naturally be competent. You are what you hang out with.
Lastly, have a competent circle of friends.
I am not someone who will tell you to ditch your friends that are not competent. I am not a fan of using friends for something like that.
I believe that true friends are gold whether they are competitive or not. What’s important is that you both share a bond and support each other.
But, what I’m telling you here is to have more friends, try to befriend someone who is competent. See how they perform and learn from them.
Thay way, you can see how to be competitive. While this list is good, having a real life example is way better.
So find someone who is competitive and hang out with them. Learn what they are doing and it will passively affect your mindset to be also competitive.