78 Things Your Kids Should Know Before They Leave Home

What life skills do your kids have? Do you know which ones they don’t have?

Some things can make a huge difference in life – like getting that job or not, improving a relationship, or saving money because you can do it yourself.

Here is a list of skills to guide you in preparing your kids for life:

People Skills

  1. How to start a conversation with a stranger
  2. Healthy boundaries in relationships – not allowing yourself to be a doormat
  3. How to say no
  4. How to listen properly
  5. How to give and receive a compliment
  6. Good manners
  7. How to make a phone call
  8. How to take a message
  9. How to resolve conflict and have courageous conversations
  10. How to recognize flattery
  11. How to be safe from sexual predators
  12. How to say sorry
  13. How to take ownership of mistakes

Home Skills

  1. How to make a simple, healthy meal from scratch
  2. How to wash dishes
  3. How to sweep and mop floors
  4. How to clean a bathroom
  5. How to care for a pet
  6. How to change an electrical plug
  7. How to wash and iron clothes
  8. Basic first aid
  9. How to make good bread
  10. How to clean a car inside and out

Life Skills

  1. How to create a resume
  2. How to type – in today’s techy age this is a must!
  3. How to navigate the internet safely
  4. How to write, address, and send a letter or card (this does still happen occasionally!)
  5. How to make an appointment
  6. How to fill out forms
  7. Create a signature/sign their name
  8. How to use a hammer, pliers, and screwdriver (girls too!)
  9. How to sew on a button
  10. Basic sewing skills (for girls – and boys too, if they want. My boy cousin once sewed himself an outfit and he was no pansy.)
  11. How to give and take directions
  12. How to check the oil in the car
  13. How to fill a tyre with air
  14. How to change a tyre
  15. How to swim
  16. How to shop for groceries
  17. How to persevere when a job gets long or tough or boring

Time Management Skills

  1. How to plan and schedule a day/week/month
  2. How to deal with distraction
  3. How to take time out to rest and not feel guilty
  4. How to create a to-do list and work through it
  5. How to tackle big jobs by dividing them into smaller bits
  6. How to be prepared ahead of time

Organizational Skills

  1. How to plan and execute the plan
  2. How to schedule, prioritize, and delegate
  3. How to set goals and deadlines and meet them
  4. How to keep things neat and tidy in your workspace
  5. How to file important papers, invoices, receipts

Money Management Skills

  1. Understand interest (why you want to earn it, not pay it)
  2. How to make a budget
  3. How to work out change
  4. How to live within your means

Healthy Lifestyle Skills

  1. How to stay physically fit
  2. How to eat healthy
  3. How to follow other basic health habits – drinking water, getting enough sleep, managing stress
  4. How to practice personal hygiene

Healthy Mind Skills

  1. How to differentiate between guilt and shame
  2. Where to find a healthy self-worth (in Christ)
  3. Right thinking vs wrong thinking about problems
  4. How to solve problems
  5. Choosing what to think about
  6. How to forgive – others and themselves
  7. How to heal and let go of baggage from the past
  8. What to do with criticism

Spiritual Habits

  1. How to pray
  2. How to study the Bible
  3. How to share what they believe and why
  4. How to confess sin and seek forgiveness
  5. How to serve others
  6. How to surrender the heart in the moment
  7. How to recognise and resist temptation

Decision-making Skills

  1. How to gather information about the decision and weigh up the pros and cons
  2. How to make decisions based on principle not feeling
  3. How to evaluate what the consequences of a decision will be
  4. How to deal with the fear of making the wrong decision

There’s a lot you can do to help your kids be well-adjusted when they leave home.  Don’t panic if you haven’t taught your kids everything on this list – I’m pretty sure I haven’t. There are some things on here that I should learn!  Let the list be a guide not a tyrant.

How  prepared are your kids to face real life?  Are there some things you wish you had known before you left home? Share your thoughts in the comments please!

About The Author

Jennifer Lovemore

Jennifer has diplomas in relationship counselling and CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy), is a certified SYMBIS facilitator, and is certified in TPM (Transformation Prayer Minsitry). She lives in South Africa, has three grown children, and is married to her best friend – Richard.

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