Interpersonal Skills –
I have held jobs and volunteer responsibilities across varied fields: childcare roles, administrative positions, marketing managing, and serving in the entertainment and food industry. All of these, despite a vast breadth in the specific skills necessary to work each successfully, share a common thread among the duties expected of me in each setting: I needed to be able to effectively interacting with others. Whether it would be the families of children I worked with, clients for companies I have served as Administrative Assistant to, or guests to a dinner party I waited on, the jobs I have held were all vital to developing the strong interpersonal skills I possess. I recognize motives to interactions, and organize my methods of communication for optimal understanding and outcome. I am personable and patient, with listening skills crafted from years of work experience. I am adaptive to individualized interactions, and acknowledge how I must change communicative approaches based on the people I am dealing with each time.
Creative Conflict-Resolution Skills –
When faced with a problem, I am solution-driven; however, almost never in a conventional manner. From experience, especially in childcare, I have come to learn that there is no one absolute solution to issues that may arise. So I have exercised my creative skills toward problem-solving in order to be able to address conflict more effectively; universal solutions tend to not be long-lasting, so it is better to create unique solutions to problems in order to resolve them more permanently. An example of this can be as simple as modifying an exercise I have a student do for trunk strengthening. If the exercise has been implemented for weeks, and the child is beginning to get bored with it and resent it, I would incorporate things in the environment that make the exercise more challenging – hence more rewarding for the effectiveness of the practice, and less boring for the child. Although this is not a generic definition of “conflict”, it is an issue that commonly arises in Early Intervention practice, and creative aptitude allows for more successful instruction, and stronger dynamics between the student and myself.
Intrapersonal Skills –
As a result of intentionally exposing myself to diverse contexts of learning, working, and volunteering, I have had ample opportunity to grow as an individual; the experiences I’ve had in the settings that I am least familiar to, with peers whose aspects of identity I am least familiar with, have been the greatest contributors to my perpetually expanding sense of self-concept. I journal daily, as I find writing to be the most effective method of conscious reflection on my strengths and weaknesses, as well as how they applied to certain situations or contexts. I have found maintaining this degree of self-awareness allows me to constantly improve myself and my own efficacy in work and academic contexts. By always asking questions of myself and others, I am allowing myself the internal space to mature, enhance my strengths, and work on my weaknesses. This introspectiveness also allows me close access to my emotions, for purposes of regulation based on contextual need and appropriateness. I can harness my empathy for parents who I can sense need to feel understood, and restrain sympathy, even if I feel it, if I sense that the last thing a family member may want is to feel pitied in any way. During my experience shadowing an Occupational Therapist in Early Intervention in home settings, I believe my intrapersonal skills were finely tuned, in tandem with my interpersonal skills, to be able to regulate my emotions to the individualized needs of each family I work with in the future – as well as to effectively teach their child.