The 13 Life Skills Every Adult Should Know

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T-Minus two weeks until we move to Huntsville, you guys. And you know what? Nothing puts your adult-ing skills to the test like a move.

There was a time not too long ago when I moved nearly every year; from one cheap, college-town rental property to the next. I would wait ’til the very last possible moment to throw all my smaller belongings into larger belongings (Boxes? Who needs boxes?!), cross my fingers that I’d get my deposit back (so I could afford the next deposit), and take as many trips across town as it took…sometimes working through the night to get it all done in a 24 hour period.

I now realize there is a much more responsible way to tackle moving. One that involves a bit more of a plan (and WAY more boxes). This got me thinking about the other adult-ing skills I’ve picked up over the years, largely through trial and error, that I think are important for everyone. I don’t consider myself an expert by any means, but these are the skills I continue to work on for maximum adult-ing…

Adult-ing Skill #1:
Basic first aid 

There is only one place to begin, and this is with first aid. Sign up for a class that teaches basic life support certification. There are many reasons why you should take a course in first aid. Of course, the most obvious reason is that you never know when an accident can happen and it’s always best to be prepared! But more than that, if something happens, you can’t always look for the adult in the room to come forward and fix things — you ARE the adult. 

Adult-ing Skill #2:
How to have difficult conversations

Being an adult means sometimes having difficult conversation. This conversation could be about anything that has a large impact on your life — your relationship, health, finances, etc. Learning how to have a difficult conversation can ensure a successful outcome and less heartache down the line.

Adult-ing Skill #3:
Self-care

We get so wrapped up in caring for other people that we often forget to care about number one. You need to make sure you take the time to care for yourself. This means prioritizing your hygiene, as well as sleep. A lot of people underestimate the importance of getting a restful night sleep. However, a lack of sleep creates irritability, as well as health issues down the road. On top of good hygiene and lots of sleep, taking time to pamper yourself every now and again is important, too!

Adult-ing Skill #4:
Nutrition

Living a healthy life is not something that comes naturally. It is something you need to learn about. A good place to start is learning how to read labels on food packages. Knowing exactly what you are consuming and how it impacts your body can go a long way.

Adult-ing Skill #5:
Emotional intelligence

Emotional intelligence is quite the buzzword these days. And for good reason! It’s important to understand how your actions and words impact other people, as well as  the emotions that other people feel and the position this puts them in. Emotional intelligence is a quality that all the best leaders exhibit because it helps them pinpoint ways to interact with people that will harvest the greatest results.

Adult-ing Skill #6:
How to communicate effectively

Another skill that people need to learn is how to communicate effectively. No one makes it through this world alone. So, if you are to get where you want to be in life you need to know how to communicate with others. You need to master the art of both written and spoken communication. It is through communication that we form meaningful friendships and relationships, not only in our social life but in the workplace as well.

Adult-ing Skill #7:
Technology

You cannot just bury your head in the sand when it comes to technology. It is no exaggeration to say that technology has changed everything. It’s changed the way we work, the way we interact with people, the way we go about our daily lives, and even the way we think. Technology can be a useful and powerful tool that can enrich your life and simplify it. So let go of the fear that you will break something or that it will be too complicated, and embrace technology!

Adult-ing Skill #8:
Listening

The importance of learning how to communicate effectively goes hand in hand with listening to others. If you find you are someone that only ever listens so that you have the opportunity to speak, then you need to find a new approach. Listening is all about really hearing what the other person saying. People’s stories matter!

Adult-ing Skill #9:
How to vote

You can’t moan about the state of the current political climate and the issues that plague the country if you are not prepared to go out there and cast a vote. You may feel like your voice is insignificant and doesn’t matter, but if everyone felt this way, what would happen? It is important to learn about how to cast a vote so that you can express your opinion and make a change. 

Adult-ing Skill #10:
How to have a sense of humor

If there is one thing you need to learn in your life, then this is it. Learning to have a sense of humor can get you further than you may realize. Humor can help you to deal with problems , as well as relieve stress and pain. While it cannot eradicate underlying issues that cause us stress and heartache, it can give us a little bit of relief. Learning to laugh during the tough times can be challenging, but once you have found this skill, it will help you to live a happier life, I promise.

Adult-ing Skill #11:
How to focus

Learning how to focus is something that everyone can benefit from. Nevertheless, it is also one of the most difficult things to do. This is especially the case in today’s society when it seems that there are so many distractions. Moreover, learning to focus does not only relate to learning to focus on a specific task that you are doing, but it also relates to focusing on your goals, your actions, and your directions. We waste so much time on activities that do not get us to where we want to be in life. By focusing our goals and our efforts, we can ensure that we live a more valuable and fulfilling existence.

Adult-ing Skill #12:
Money management

Personal finance isn’t often taught in school. So when we start earning money and we have matters such as credit cards, investing, saving for retirement, and bills to deal with, it can be overwhelming. This is why it is important to take the time to master the art of money management so that you do not end up making a financial error that stays with you for many years to come. To begin with, learn how to put together an effective budget. A simple budget is an easy skill to learn, but it is something that will help you throughout the entirety of your life. It will ensure that you do not end up living beyond your means, as well as giving you full clarity over the money that you have coming in and going out every month so that you can use it to full effect.

Adult-ing Skill #13:
Car maintenance

Whether you drive a Ford Fiesta or a Ferrari, you need to learn how to maintain your vehicle effectively. If you don’t, you could end up wasting a lot of money in the form of repair bills. Maintaining your vehicle properly will prolong the life of your car while also ensuring that any issues are picked up quickly before they become bigger and more expensive problems. 

Ok, gotta get back to my moving schedule! #adulting

What adult-ing skills would you add to this list? 

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5 thoughts on “The 13 Life Skills Every Adult Should Know

  1. Taxes, I’d add taxes 😀 it’s such a complicated system if you haven’t got any clue about it 🙂 this was a great list, check, check and check – am I adult yet? 😀

  2. I think I have the most of them except the last one, I know only a few things about cars and I don’t drive!

  3. Okay a few of them I ace and a few of them never known I think it should be my list of skills to learn hehe! But this is really a great reminder and checklist for adulting.

  4. Difficult convos is probably the best one and that ties into emotional intelligence. I think self-acceptance would be great on this list. We have such unrealistic expecations thanks to the media.

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