16 high-paying skills to learn

What determines your income? It’s tempting to blame the economy or industry in which you chose to pursue your career, but you don’t have to settle for less than you deserve. If you struggle to achieve what you want, it’s time to skyrocket your success by breaking old patterns, adopting a positive mindset, and empowering yourself to learn new skills and strategies.

The truth is, “Your income right now is a result of your standards,” as Tony Robbins says. Like everything in life, your income is within your realm of influence when you create meaning in all you do and commit to learning high-income skills that allow you to reach your goals.

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What is a high-income skill?

A high-income skill is a personal proficiency you can leverage in order to get paid more in the marketplace. It’s often a soft skill that few other people have, like passion, communication or reliability, and is sometimes industry-specific. One thing these skills have in common is that they deliver unique value to your industry, increase your demand in the job market, and allow you to control your own salary.

High paying skills and Traits

The income disparity between rich and poor is wider than ever, which begs the question: how do some people always seem to end up at the top while everyone else earns less? Successful people share certain traits, but you can learn many high-income skills to put yourself on an equal footing.

1. Analytical thinking

Analytical thinking is a big part of making good decisions, and good choices can lead to higher income. Many of today’s businesses and professions rely on unprecedented levels of data to help them with their strategic planning. Understanding data and using it to become a critical thinker is a high-value skill in any industry, especially in business, technology, engineering and related careers.

2. High standards

Developing high-income skills requires a significant change in mindset to accept nothing less than earning more. Envision what you want, and then do whatever it takes to get results that are as close as possible to what you envisioned. This ability to raise their standards sets high earners apart – they don’t settle for less than the best, so adopt these standards and don’t look back.

3. Passion

Passion drives high-earner decisions. When you live attuned to your passions and find meaning in your work, it becomes part of your larger life strategy, and you start living life instead of working a job. Is passion a high-income skill you can learn? The answer is yes – find your passion and connect it back to a fulfilling career.

4. Reliability

Reliability is an attractive high-income skill that helps to build connections. When you’re reliable, people are more open to fostering a professional relationship with you and are more likely to offer a raise or a promotion. In certain industries, like healthcare, reliability can even be a matter of life and death.

5. Drive

The gift of drive is one of life’s greatest blessings. Unfortunately, when you lose your drive, you lose the ability to confidently take massive action, and waning enthusiasm often leads to complacency. Tending to self-confidence is vital to overcoming this trap and keeping your momentum going.

6. Emotional control

The ability to think clearly under stress is one of the most advantageous high-paying skills to learn. Grounded thinking creates a foundation for sound decisions, so balance your thinking by considering alternatives, seeking the input of trusted friends and taking a break when you feel overwhelmed. Develop the self-control necessary to distinguish between problems and opportunities.

7. Communication

From the boardroom to the family room, poor communication can wreak havoc. High earners consistently rate clear communication as one of the most powerful high-income skills. Communication isn’t just talking – it’s about learning to use deep listening to connect with others and projecting confidence with your body language in the same ways as high earners.

8. Open-mindedness

High-income earners know that great ideas come from anywhere and open-mindedness is the foundation of creativity and innovation. Your next great product idea may come over drinks on a Wednesday or from buckling down in your next staff meeting. The key to demonstrating authentic leadership is realizing that everyone on your team is a problem-solving resource.

9. Consistent habits

Given the rapidly changing pace of technology, markets and the economy, consistency is a valuable high-income skill. To earn a high salary, be consistent, with a stable workflow and professional interpersonal manner that helps others trust you to get your job done. You should also develop consistent empowering habits, like eating healthy, exercising and using priming to get yourself in the right mindset.

10. Collaboration

In work and life, “hard skills” like technical expertise only get you so far, as they don’t help nourish the basis of your career: your colleagues. Businesses are not machines – they are groups of people working together to achieve a common goal. So as you learn new high-income skills, focus on developing empathy and a growth mindset that fosters input from all levels of your organization. When you embrace the soft skills necessary for collaboration, you take your earnings to the next level.

11. Leverage

There’s no need to reinvent the wheel to develop high-income skills – you already have an arsenal of resources available. The pathways to advancement are numerous, from seeking a promotion at your current job, reaching out to your network or even becoming an entrepreneur. Exploring the possibilities opens doors, and high earners know how to leverage their resources to generate more income.

12. Influence

Whatever your industry, harnessing the power of the internet is an accessible way to gain influence. From creating online communities to affiliate marketing, anyone can make an online impact or expand their reach with multiple revenue streams. Learning to influence others is another essential high-paying skill that can help you negotiate better contracts and earn a higher income.

13. Belief in yourself

It comes down to this: with strong self-belief, you can – and will – earn a higher salary. Our beliefs create our reality, which is why it’s essential to replace limiting beliefs with empowering thoughts. Stop telling yourself you’re not confident or a great communicator and start communicating and acting with confidence. “Fake it ’til you make it,” and eventually, you’ll make it!

14. The power of proximity

The world’s most successful people have a secret: they know about the power of proximity – the idea that you are who your friends are, or in Tony’s words, “Who you spend time with is who you become.” Stop surrounding yourself with people who bring you down, don’t share your goals and create distractions. Instead, find people who have what you want, and figure out how they did it. Finding a mentor, joining a mastermind group or getting a business coach are all great ways to do this.

15. Feeding your mind

Feeding your mind the right fuel can positively impact your mindset, career knowledge, and industry. Look to Tony Robbins’ resources on career and business success to help you develop high-income skills. You might enjoy starting with high-income skills related to building client confidence, building a rockstar team, redefining risk, gaining the upper hand in negotiations and turning potential business problems into opportunities.

16. Financial planning

Financial planning is one of the most potent high-income skills. Start by creating a realistic, flexible spending and savings plan. If you have college loans, be smart and minimize your debt. Next, build your credit by making timely payments on everything, and be wary of misusing your credit. Finally, think about how to invest your money to expand your future options.

Businesses grow and decline. Economies work in a cycle of bull and bear markets. Some industries continually grow while others decline. Uncertainty is the only certainty, so it’s vital to learn high-income skills that apply to any industry and economy. Start developing your own skills today and leverage them to advance your career and build the life you desire.

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