Crack open any personal development book, and you will start to see themes emerge: confidence, self-care, poise, and polished communication skills. People clamor to build these skills given the popularity of “self-help” and personal development programs and books. Having more confidence or prioritizing health and wellness can typically lead to positive results: getting that promotion, making friends, feeling better, and increasing overall happiness.
Sometimes, setting out to learn a focused skill can result in acquiring bonus qualities that apply to all areas of life. People who take cooking lessons also learn to follow directions; people who take karate classes learn discipline; and people who train to be actors gain confidence they can apply to all areas of their lives. These are considered “soft skills,” abilities that stretch beyond the technical. These may involve social, communication, or problem-solving skills. Soft skills can also include elements of presenting yourself to the world: dress, hygiene, and manners.
GeNienne Samuels is a former Wizards Girl for the NBA’s Washington Wizards turned in-arena host for the NBA, WNBA, AFL, and now NFL. Before her time with the Wizards, Samuels was a cheerleader with the Washington Redskins (now Washington Football Team), swimsuit calendar cover model, Pro Bowl cheerleader, and a variety show dancer that traveled the world in support of our military. In addition to her dance and cheer background, Samuels is an accomplished businesswoman, project management professional, and TV News Anchor and Producer.
Samuels has parlayed her business, public speaking/hosting and athletic skills into her cheer and dance program SidelinePrep, a coaching business that prepares cheerleaders and dance professionals for pro-level auditions. Sideline Prep has brought together a collection of top-notch former cheer, dance, and pageant prosto bestow their wealth of knowledge upon hopeful dancers and cheerleaders.
It didn’t take long after the founding of Sideline Prep for Samuels to realize that helping “her ladies” (and now men) make the team resulted in residual benefits for students. Clients emerged from the program not only ready to take on their next audition but also with sharpened lifestyle and professional skills, which made them better equipped for anything life could throw at them.
“What a lot of people don’t realize, is it is more than just about dance or the technique side. It’s also about making sure you can be a strong ambassador for the team. You have good interview skills; you are photogenic and healthy and fuel your body [properly]. There are so many components that go into preparing,” Samuels told Chats from the Blog Cabin.
“The foundation of it all is mindset.”
Tuning in to Bonus Skills
Samuels and the team at SidelinePrep are well-aware of the bonus life skills their training provides. They sing the praises of these extra benefits on their website and in interviews about Sideline Prep and what it takes to “go pro”.
Successful clients have honed in on these extra acquired skills and attribute them to leading to further success beyond landing a coveted spot on a dance or cheer team.
“SidelinePrep develops their trainees not only as dancers but as individuals,” says client Ashley, “The program focuses on bringing out the best in everyone in all aspects of their life,”
Acquiring “soft skills” such as interview and public speaking skills or timeliness is not something to be taken lightly. On the contrary, it may be the primary reason why one would pursue learning something new in the first place. While getting a spot on a team or becoming a world-class athlete or artist is fantastic, gaining skills applicable in all areas of one’s life can be considered priceless.
Learning to Be Open to Soft Skill Attainment
Gaining soft skills in the midst of learning something new and applying those skills does not simply happen organically. One should train themselves to be open to receiving instruction and feedback (and sometimes constructive criticism) for any residual skills to take hold and stick. In addition, making these newly acquired skills a part of your daily routine will enforce the skill and eventually turn it into a habit, a part of who you are.
If you go into a cooking class thinking you’re only going to walk away knowing how to cook a turkey, you may be missing the point of learning in general. Educators typically hope they’re creating a well-rounded learning experience, no matter what subject they’re teaching. Being receptive to everything you can learn takes dedication and open-mindedness.
As GeNienne Samuels told Small Business Trendsetters , the cheerleaders and dancers she works with gain so much more than audition skills when they go through the Sideline Prep Coaching Program.
“They learn how to change their mindset and always think positively, how to eat properly, how to carry themselves in front of a crowd of people, how to best present themselves verbally, on paper, and in person, how to interview effectively, and how to incorporate fitness and healthy routines in their lives to feel better and look better,” Samuels says, “These skills transcend beyond an audition.”
Learning new skills is a part of a well-rounded life. Becoming a lifelong learner, no matter what subjects or activities a person dives into, ensures that soft skills will follow, creating well-rounded individuals ready to take on whatever may come.