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Important Basic Life Skills Everyone Should Know

Snehal Motkar
Learning basic life skills is crucial if you are looking to be independent anytime soon. This story enlists most of the important basic skills that you should know to avoid dependency on others for minor things.

According to WHO...

... life skills are the 'abilities for adaptive and positive behavior that enable individuals to deal effectively with the demands and challenges of everyday life.'
I totally agree to the fact that each one of us has inherent abilities to perform some tasks, but find it difficult or impossible to perform other tasks at all. Luckily, for tasks people find difficult to perform, there is always professional assistance at hand.
So, by doing things that you can do, and relying on help for the things that you can't, life goes on - smoothly some say. However, this will continue only till there is perfect synchronization between you and the professional help.
Now, imagine if your laundry service stops functioning for a week or so, and the heap of clothes to be laundered is increasing by the day? Or, the restaurant from where you eat regularly is shut for a few days? What do you do then?
Well, this is the time when those housekeeping skills your mom taught you when you were little come to your rescue. You can do the laundry on your own as well prepare some simple recipes like scrambled eggs, rice, vegetable stock, etc., and save yourself from starvation.
Apart from these skills for performing daily tasks, knowing certain other life skills are important as they come in handy in times of emergency. Mentioned below are some of the various life skills that everyone should learn at some point in their life.

Important Basic Life Skills You Should Know

When it comes to life skills, there are many skills that can make life easier for you. Obviously the more you know, the easier it will become to live independently, without having to rely on anyone for anything. In this story, we give you a few of the most important household, life-saving, and financial skills that you should know to stand on your own feet.

Household Skills

Sewing on a Button or a Hem
Being acquainted with sewing techniques proves to be a great savior, because most times it's a divine coincidence that when you are in a hurry to reach somewhere, you open the door, step out and suddenly look behind to find that a sharp edge somewhere on the door frame has dramatically caught the hemline of your sleeve and opened the entire stitch.
Knowing the basic skill of sewing can solve this problem for you in no time, saving you the trouble of changing the entire outfit, and giving it to a seamstress for repair.
Basic Knowledge about Food and Cooking Skills
For maintaining good health, eating good food is of utmost importance. For that it is essential to have some basic skills like identifying food products, and, of course, cooking them. You should be able to plan and shop for food items that will make up a good diet for you.
Also, you should be able to read the food labels to know the nutritional content, its validity, and the ingredients used in it.
Cooking also matters a lot, especially when you are away from home. If you know certain basic cooking techniques like poaching eggs, baking potatoes in the microwave, making vegetable stock, cooking rice in the microwave, etc., you will not have to eat out frequently. This will also give your body a really nutritious treat.
The two most important things while cooking is knowing which kitchen tools to use for which purpose, and cooking the food in right amounts to prevent wastage. Also, serving and storing the food are important aspects of cooking, as they prevent spoilage of food.
Laundry and Ironing
Doing the laundry is important to ensure a good, hygienic life for you, as well as your favorite and expensive clothes. Knowing how to launder clothes involves skills like reading the labels (very important because different clothes need different washing techniques), sorting the laundry, knowing how to operate washing machine, and lastly, drying techniques.
After laundry comes ironing your clothes. Ironing your daily wear will offer a complete look to your outfit and make you look smart. It will also give you some basic knowledge about the clothes you are putting on. There are several reasons why many people do not consider ironing as a part of life skills.
Some of them think no one notices if their clothes are ironed or not, some have the fear of damaging the fabric, while others are not sure whether a particular garment needs ironing or not.
It is a part of house cleaning, and if you live alone and prepare your own food, you ought to know the correct way of doing the dishes. For better washing results and prevention of health problems, ensure using good dish washing soap, scrub, rubber gloves, and proper utensils for the task.

Life-saving Skills

First Aid
First aid has such a significant place in our lives because it can help save a life until professional medical help arrives. It is just about learning some basic procedures and following some guidelines to give initial treatment to the patient.
It helps to ease the pain or prevent further damage to the body. In an emergency, there is no time to read the instructions, hence it is better to memorize a few basic first aid procedures and react quickly to the situation.
Swimming is considered as the third-most vital life skill one must learn in the early stages of life. Early stages because it has been observed that drowning is among the most common causes of accidental deaths in children under 16.
Swimming is important not only for your life, but also for saving the life of others trapped in dangerous situations. Hence, swimming should also be included along with teaching, reading, and writing as basic life skills.
Surprisingly, driving has been rated as the most important life skill over any other skill. It has received around 69% of votes when compared to other skills such as writing or using a computer. There are several parameters like age, income, and region that have a great impact on the importance of driving.
For instance, people within the lower income groups tend to value driving as the most important skill, whereas people with higher job profiles value writing as the most essential life skill to earn a living. Apart from these statistics, driving must also be valued for its usefulness in case of emergencies.
Changing a Flat Tire
Drivers have to deal with flat tires on a regular basis, and therefore, having basic knowledge of changing a flat will save you from the dreadful situation of being alone and helpless on deserted roads, waiting for someone to pass by. For your help, an instruction manual and the L-shaped tool comes with your car.
Read, and if possible, memorize the instructions to be able to respond to an emergency, quickly and efficiently. Ensure that you always have the right tools in your car to avoid complications.
Climbing a Tree
Though this may seem like an unimportant life skill, it can come in surprisingly handy. Some skills are important not just to improve the quality of your life, but to help others as well. Climbing trees is one such skill that is important to learn. This can be extremely helpful on many occasions, like an emergency while you are on a camping trip.

Financial Skills

Using an ATM Card/Machine
We all know that carrying hard cash is quite risky, and hence, we have the facility of an ATM. Along with safety, there are other advantages of an ATM, like even if you forget to carry cash, you can always stop by any ATM, withdraw the required amount, and get the work done.
It is also possible to pay bills with your debit and credit card just by swiping them. Gas stations, cloth stores, food malls, etc., accept credit and debit cards for payments, which solves the problems of giving change, and also helps to have a record of all your expenses.
Therefore, to be able to be on the move easily without hard cash, you have to achieve the skill of using an Automated Teller Machine, as well as a debit and a credit card.
Planning a Budget
Whether it is a weekly or a monthly budget; it is extremely important for everyone to keep an account of each penny coming in and going out. Planning a budget has a twofold advantage - it will give you satisfaction that you are spending money the right way, with more of it used for necessities, and you will also have an exact idea of where to cut down on your expenses.
Apart from the above skills there are certain life skills that can be applicable to special situations in your life. These include:
► Communication/Social Skills  
► Work Skills (writing a resume, application letter, resignation letter, etc.)
► Networking Skills

► Decision-making Skills

► Parenting Skills
► Career Planning Skills

► Critical Thinking Skills

► Information Analysis Skills

► Relaxation Skills

► Internet Proficiency Skills
Although not a complete list of skills, the most basic and important ones have been included here. Time management is the most important skill that will help you use the above skills efficiently and become self-sufficient in life. If you start learning these skills early in life and practice them regularly, you will become a pro in these skills and won't get stuck with small things in life.