Better Manhood: Introduction to Soft Skills 

Becoming a better man requires both hard skills and soft skills. In my last post of this series about creating a better roadmap to manhood, I summarized the hard skills needed to become a mature man. The series now turns toward the soft skills needed for positive relationships, personal growth, and the overall well-being of everyone you interact with throughout your life as you become a mature adult man.

Soft Skills Defined

Men, like everyone else, need soft skills in both their personal and professional lives. Soft skills are the essential character traits and interpersonal attributes that facilitate effective communication, relationship-building, and emotional intelligence that influence how well you interact with others. They help you form relationships with people, create trust and dependability, and lead others.

Ironically, soft skills are often some of the hardest skills to develop. They are not something you learn in a course (or read in a blog!) but something that builds through experience. However, this doesn’t mean you cannot learn or be taught these important soft skills. 

Men Need Strong Soft Skills

Today, too many immature guys have gone off the road in how they use their masculinity, which is the main reason for writing this series. Much is a result of having poor soft skills and awareness of your behavior and emotions. This is not about conforming to patriarchal or societal expectations or becoming someone you are not. It’s about learning what helps you become a well-balanced, stable, intelligent, compassionate, and emotionally strong man. It’s about becoming a better man; one who knows how to apply these soft skills to all aspects of his life. 

Benefits of Strong Soft Skills

Here are some reasons why men need strong soft skills: 

  • Improved Relationships: Soft skills enhance communication, empathy, and emotional intelligence. They make it easier to form meaningful connections with friends, family, colleagues, and romantic partners. Better relationships contribute to overall happiness and well-being.
  • Effective Leadership: In both personal and professional settings, strong soft skills are critical to good leadership. Leaders who understand and relate to others well, tend to be more successful in motivating and inspiring their teams.
  • Conflict Resolution: Soft skills such as active listening, empathy, and communication are vital in resolving conflicts constructively. Men with these skills can navigate disagreements in a way that promotes understanding and cooperation.
  • Reduced Miscommunication: Miscommunication can lead to misunderstandings, tension, and conflicts. Developing effective communication skills helps men express themselves clearly and understand others’ perspectives more accurately.
  • Adaptability and Resilience: Soft skills like adaptability and emotional intelligence enable men to cope with stress and setbacks. They adapt to change more effectively, leading to greater resilience in challenging situations.
  • Positive Mental Health: Emotionally intelligent men are better equipped to manage their emotions and mental well-being. Understanding and expressing emotions can reduce the risk of emotional suppression and its negative effects.
  • Career Advancement: Soft skills are highly valued in the workplace. Men with strong interpersonal skills may experience increased opportunities for career growth, promotions, and leadership roles.
  • Enhanced Teamwork: Working well with others is crucial for success in collaborative environments. Soft skills like empathy, communication, and cooperation are essential for effective teamwork.
  • Supportive Parenting and Relationships: Men with strong soft skills can be more supportive and understanding partners and parents. They create a positive and nurturing family environment.
  • Positive Role Models: Men with well-developed soft skills can serve as positive role models for others, including younger generations.
  • Reduction of Gender Stereotypes: By breaking the stereotypes of emotional suppression and toxic masculinity. Men with improved soft skills help create a more inclusive and compassionate society.
  • Personal Growth and Fulfillment: Soft skills contribute to personal growth, self-awareness, and a deeper understanding of oneself and others. This journey of self-improvement can lead to a more fulfilling life.

Developing essential soft skills not only benefits men personally. It also positively impacts their interactions with others and overall success and happiness. 

Essential Soft Skills for Men

Over the next several posts, I will describe what I believe are the essential soft skills every man needs to become a good man. These will include:

  • Managing Your Behavior
  • Being a Good Communicator 
  • Controlling Your Emotions
  • Developing Your Spirituality
  • Taking care of Yourself

In each post, I will also provide the reasons good men need these soft skills and how to put them into practice. This subset of soft skills will conclude in my final section about the practical application of these skills for maintaining strong relationships, managing domestic life (home and family), critical thinking, planning & goal setting, and building your legacy. These are the marks of a mature and proper man. 

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GodBuddy Focus

Each post will also continue with how godly men apply these soft skills differently than most men. As you know, godly men exemplify their faith and demonstrate their values by how they live. This is especially important in their soft skills. Godly men connect more deeply with their spiritual beliefs and inspire others to do the same. They are positive role models. Godly men show empathy and demonstrate love. They are clear communicators and teachers, who help others grow. They demonstrate compassion, kindness, and encouragement that fosters a sense of belonging and cooperation and builds trust and unity.

Godly men live authentically by developing meaningful friendships and maintaining strong relationships with their families. They effectively manage conflicts and emotions, reduce stress and create a more peaceful and harmonious environment. A godly man’s soft skills benefit others first, while also contributing to his personal growth and fulfillment.

For discussion:

  • What do you see as the benefits of having strong soft skills? 
  • Are there any soft skills you would add to the list? 
  • Do you have a good friend who can help you identify your blind spots and strength skills in these areas? 
The Roadmap to Better Manhood
Here are links to the other posts in this series.
IntroductionTime for a Change
The Secrets to Becoming a Real (Godly) Man
Start Being a R-E-A-L Man Here
FoundationA Man’s Identity: Knowing Who You Are and Whose You Are
Discovering Your Purpose as a Man
A Man and His Worldview
Using Your Masculinity Properly
First, Manage Yourself Well
Hard-skillsBetter Manhood Skills: Money Management
Better Manhood Skills: Good Personal Hygiene
Better Manhood Skills: Time Management
Better Manhood Skills: Navigation, Transportation and Travel
Better Manhood Skills: Education and Employment 
Better Manhood Skills: Organizing Your Belongings
Better Manhood Skills: Fun and Adventure
Summary of The Hard Skills of Better Men 
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