SEL and Work

SEL and Work

We at SEL4CT wanted to bring some awareness to the importance of SEL skills in our older students and our own lives. Many times when we discuss SEL we focus on elementary and middle school aged children, forgetting about the importance of SEL in all stages of life. SEL teaches us how to communicate effectively with others, how to practice self-control in frustrating situations, how to recognize and understand our emotions, practice gratitude and mindfulness, and how to live happy and fulfilling lives. 

Aperture Education notes that SEL skills such as self-awareness, emotional management, and responsible decision making help prepare students for college life. SEL skills also help students prepare for the stress of college life – from being away from family and friends to more difficult course work to learning to make new friends in an unfamiliar environment. EdSurge notes that some colleges are continuing the SEL education in the college classroom and on campus. The article notes that many college classes are now providing a space for relationship building, self-care, and stress management. Greater Good also notes that college stress looks and feels different than typical stress as students are not only managing course work but new social situations, financial stress, and feelings of homesickness. However, SEL skills learned in younger years – such as mindfulness and self-compassion – have helped many college level students better manage their stress and feel confident in their skills. 

Just as SEL skills do not stop when we graduate high school, they also do not stop when we graduate college. SEL skills also help prepare us for the workforce! The Committee for Children notes that SEL skills such as problem solving skills, emotions recognition and management, assertiveness, and communication skills help prepare us for the workforce. However, many of these skills are not only wanted for those in any level of employment, they are expected of workplace leaders and management positions. CASEL continues this conversation, noting that employers typically look for individuals who are emotionally competent, strong communication skills, and the ability to work well with others. Aperture Education also notes that the top five skills employers are looking for are all SEL skills: working well with others, responsible decision making, problem solving, communication, and the ability to organize and prioritize tasks. These are all skills that SEL builds and continues to develop as life goes on.

We hope that this encourages you to see the importance of SEL in stages of life! 

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