Raising children can be difficult and it’s hard to know which skills are the most important for them to learn. It’s tough enough trying to keep up with all of the parenting advice out there, let alone trying to determine what skills are essential for your child. What if you’re teaching them the wrong things?
Essential Skills provides a step-by-step guide for raising successful children. This post will teach you how to help your kids develop 6 life skills that they will use for the rest of their lives.
While school certainly does prepare kids for their chosen career paths, it often does little to prepare them for the everyday practicalities of adult life. This is where you come in. As a parent or guardian, it is crucial to take on the role of educator at times. The following six areas are the most important for you to cover with your kids:
1. Safe Meal Preparation
If you want your kids to be healthy and self-sufficient, it’s a good idea to get them to help out in the kitchen as soon as possible. Start with how to safely chop fruits and vegetables. Then, expand into everything from how to find the best cookware set to safe cooking techniques.
If you’re not too sure about these things yourself, then have your kids join you as you educate yourself about food preparation. This can be a wonderful bonding exercise, creating happy memories you can all look back on for years to come.
2. How to Have a Balanced Diet
Building on the tip above, it’s important to also educate yourself and your kids about proper nutrition. Swapping your old, scratched, chemical-laden Teflon pans for healthy ceramic cookware is an excellent idea. However, you won’t enjoy the full force of the health benefits if you’re only ever cooking hot dogs and fried foods in said pans.
These foods can form part of a balanced diet, but you’ll need to educate yourself to understand how much of them you should have and how often. You’ll also want to get a strong grasp on the types of foods you should be consuming every day for optimal health.
3. Conflict Resolution Skills
Conflict resolution skills can help both introverts and extroverts communicate more effectively and deescalate confrontations. The idea isn’t to encourage kids to avoid conflict as that can often make situations worse. Rather, you want to teach them to be able to maintain their cool and communicate effectively in heightened situations.
4. Self-Care Skills
It may seem odd to think of self-care as a skill, but it most certainly is. Indeed, this is a skill that many adults lack, leading to burnout, injuries, exhaustion, stress, and other maladies.
When teaching your kids about self-care, you’ll need to focus on a wide variety of topics. From engaging in daily exercise (with proper warm-ups and cool-downs) to spending time in nature, the scope of self-care is incredibly broad.
5. Financial Management Skills
Can you imagine how much better off you’d be right now if you knew about the power of compound interest when you were a teenager with your first job? This is precisely why an education in financial management is the best gift you can give your kids. Teach them everything you wish you knew at their age, set up an investment account for them, show them how to budget, and encourage them to save some of their pocket money each week.
6. Self-Management Skills
As your kids get older, gift them with more responsibilities. We use the word “gift” intentionally here – make it feel like each new responsibility is a gift because it truly is. Start simple with things like making their own bed, folding their own clothes after you’ve done washing, and keeping their room tidy. As they get older, you can add in things like preparing their own school lunch, cleaning the car, and making their own appointments for dentist visits.
Teach these skills to your kids, and by the time they leave home, they’ll be fully prepared for the adult world.