Life skills are those things that we simply can’t do without in our adult lives. They are the skills that we build from as our foundation and without them, our happiness in life is much more evasive. Life skills are often overlooked as well. Parents get so wrapped up in right and wrong that they can easily overlook some important skills. I know that some of these life skills are tough to deliver along with all the other things I do as a mother. This is why it is so important to put a premium on them….to repeat them….and to start at a very young age. Over time, the lessons will become a natural part of who they are and your constant reminding will become second nature. Here are five extremely important life skills that often get overlooked:
How to Compromise
Kids want to win and they want to win every single time. This goes for arguments, contests and everything else in between. The concept of giving in or conceding anything is not one that will likely show up without some help from us. Take the time to actually teach your kids how to compromise….give them chances to give something up to get something. (just be careful it is not when you are disciplining them)
How to Release Feelings
Kids bottling up their feelings turn into adults that refuse to share their feelings. Depression, anxiety and all kinds of other things can follow quickly. Talk to your kids about their feelings and invest the time. Let them tell you about what they feel and why. This also will build trust and allow your kid to know that coming to you is okay.
How to Value Opinions
Learning to consider what other people think doesn’t seem like a childlike lesson but it really is. If you can put it in your child’s head that other people’s thoughts and opinions hold value, you will be raising an attentive and thoughtful child. The concept might seem lofty, but it works. A child that is considerate of your thoughts, feelings and opinions is one that will be tolerant and attentive in adulthood. We need more of that in today’s world.
How to Share
It might be basic but judging from the number of kids I see refusing to do it, I would say it is often overlooked. Sharing is a huge lesson that you simply can’t pass on. If you do, you might have a child on your hands that is tough to handle in short order.
How to Barter
The concept of buying and selling is as old as man, but for some reason it never seems to come up with kids until they are several years into school. Why not talk about the way the world works from the earliest stages? Why limit our kids in that manner? Teach them about buying, selling and the economy. Teach them about fiscal basics and let it be something they feel is a natural part of life. This will help them to grow into strong and functioning adults.
What other life lessons do you find to be important you can share?
Along the lines of “How To Value Opinions”, in our house one of our mantras is “dont yuck my yum”. Meaning one one kid says “I love apples” and then the other one says “I hate apples” we remind them to value others’ opinions!