Life Skills for Teens (Detailed List and a Printable PDF) - TeenWire.org (2022)

There are countless important life skills for teens, and the ones that matter most to you may depend on your interests, your personal values, and what you’re planning to do with these skills. I’ve tried to include a little something for everyone on this list of skills, from the bare essentials that every teenager should learn, to some other skills that are a bit more specific and may not be universally useful but are still worth considering.

There are many important skills in life that will help you out over and over again, and there are also some life skills that make your life easier, that help you enjoy life, that help you to cope with challenges that come your way, and more. Let’s get right into the list of life skills for teens!

Download our life skills checklist for young adults: We’ve compiled this article into a PDF that you can download. It’s just a simple list, it doesn’t have the same descriptions and everything, so it works great as a checklist. You can click here to download our teenage life skills checklist pdf. (Note: the PDF is currently down, we’re adding an updated version very soon.)

Table of Contents

List of Life Skills for Young Adults That are Crucial to Being Independent

Life Skills for Teens (Detailed List and a Printable PDF) - TeenWire.org (1)

Let’s start with the absolute must-have life skills that everyone should work towards mastering, or at least gaining a decent proficiency, and then putting more effort towards the ones that interest you the most. Either way, you should put some time into every single one of these skills, because these are all very valuable things to get good at. This is our list of essential life skills for teens, so please put some serious consideration into these ones.

These aren’t presented in any particular order, we’re not ranking them by importance. I’m just saying that all of the skills on this first list are the most important ones, overall, and this is arguably and you could probably convince me that there are other ones that should be up here, too. But we had to start somewhere, right? So let’s start with these life skills for teenagers…

How to Cook: I think this is one of the most important skills in life, but you don’t have to agree with me! You don’t have to be the next celebrity chef or culinary expert, but having a few good recipes under your belt and basic knowledge of what makes food taste good and how to prepare it will get you very far. Cooking a meal for someone is a great way to ingratiate yourself to them, and it’s important to be able to feed yourself with good food as you enter adulthood.

Financial Literacy: Financial literacy includes the basics of budgeting, how to save money, how to pay bills, how to write a check (even if that’s pretty uncommon these days), how to open a bank account for teens, and more. Learning the basics of how finance works, how loans work, how to stay out of debt and more can help teenagers avoid some crushing financial challenges later in life.

Manners: I’m not saying that you need to go to some fancy etiquette school to learn how to be stuffy and obnoxious, but learning basic manners is really important, especially for teens whose parents didn’t really teach them. Knowing to send a thank you letter when someone does something nice for you (even if it’s an email or a text) goes a very long way, and there’s a lot more to learn, too.

These are the ones that I consider absolutely crucial life skills to master for teenagers, but there are a lot more that we’ll be looking at next. I’m not saying that many of these other ones aren’t super important, too, but having decent manners, knowing how finances work, and being able to feed yourself is like a trifecta for surviving in today’s world.

Life Skills for Teenagers at Home

Life Skills for Teens (Detailed List and a Printable PDF) - TeenWire.org (2)

Here are some life skills that come in handy around the home.

Doing Laundry Correctly: Hopefully, you know how to toss your clothes in the washing machine and to get it spinning, but there’s more to it than that. Paying attention to the labels on your clothes that tell you how to wash each piece correctly will ensure that your clothes last longer, and look great longer, too. This can save you a lot of money on clothes, and your favorite outfits will last longer.

Yard Maintenance: The basics of how to maintain your yard, including the various tools that you use. For example, knowing the very basics of how to safely use a lawnmower and how to safely fix the most common issues if something goes wrong with it. Also, knowing how to care for plants if you have a garden, and how to take care of a lawn, and how to do the trim, and more… it’s just good stuff to know if you plan on owning a home later in life, so ask your parents if you can help out around the yard if you aren’t already.

Hygiene and Grooming: Basic hygiene and grooming are obviously very important, so is learning the basic upkeep for whatever style you have. For example, if you have a beard growing in or a mustache, learn to trim it properly and to care for it to keep it looking nice. You’d be surprised how many people don’t wash their legs in the shower, they just let the soap run down them and consider it clean.

Staying Organized: Learning the basics of staying organized in your home, and your digital life, will give you a sense of peace that will follow you all throughout your life. It’s hard for people to get organized if they don’t form these skills early on, but you can always learn skills and strategies at any age. You’ll get much more use out of your belongings since you’ll always be able to find everything. Set yourself up for a life that isn’t filled with misplacing things, digging through boxes, and never knowing where anything is.

Personal Development Life Skills for Teenagers and Career-Related Skills

It might be a little bit too soon to start planning for your working career, but here are some career-related skills and personal development tips that will help you in your relationships throughout your life, and in your professional life as well.

Professional Communication: Knowing how to sound confident in your professional communications is important, as is a basic understanding of how to communicate in a clear and concise way. If people come off unclear or rude, it could cost them opportunities they may not even realize. A lot of this can be picked up from a book like the 7 habits of highly effective teens.

Listening Skills: Listening to your coworkers and your clients is valuable, and listening to your partners and friends is absolutely essential. People don’t always want solutions or advice, sometimes they just want someone to listen. you can always ask someone if they want advice, though, but otherwise – learn to listen and it’ll get you far. If you are a good listener, you might be able to consider a teenage volunteer opportunity at somewhere like a helpline for teens.

Empathy: Having empathy for people, even if you don’t agree with them and even if they’re not being super kind to you, can help you to move on from bad situations without taking things personally. Understanding that if someone isn’t being great, they probably have some other stuff going on, even if they’re taking it out on you.

Boundaries: Understanding boundaries is incredibly valuable both in terms of personal lives and professional lives. There are certain lines that shouldn’t be crossed in a professional setting, and in your personal life it’s important to know how to set your own boundaries as you see fit, and learning how to respect the boundaries of those in your life.

Learning Life Skills for Teens is So Important!

Hopefully, you’ve found some skills on this list that interest you in learning more about. You’re on the internet, so there are great resources to learn and master just about everything you could ever imagine, just make sure you’re using good advice from reputable sources! For example, you don’t want to learn about finance from some shady website, but a site like Investopedia is a great place to start.

There’s too much to cover for us to write complete guides on each of these skills, but hopefully, these ideas will help get you started. Some of them are fun and rewarding, other ones are just important even if they aren’t always the most pleasant. You can pick and choose what to focus on, depending on your own values, but just make sure you’re learning or avoiding various skills for the right reasons and not out of fear or laziness. Can you think of any other life skills for teens that are good to know?

FAQs

What life skills do teenagers need? ›

Essential Life Skills For Teens
  • Money or Budgeting Skills. ...
  • Cooking or Food Skills. ...
  • Dress Sense or Clothing Skills. ...
  • Personal Grooming. ...
  • Cleanliness and Hygiene. ...
  • Personal Healthcare and Basic First Aid. ...
  • Social Skills And Manners. ...
  • Organization skills.
10 Aug 2021

What are the 7 essential life skills for adults? ›

These life skills include problem solving, critical thinking, communication skills, decision-making, creative thinking, interpersonal relationship skills, self awareness building skills, empathy and coping with stress skills.

What are the 5 essential life skills? ›

What are MITM's 7 Essential Life Skills?
  • Focus and Self-Control. Children need this skill to achieve goals, especially in a world filled with distractions and information overload. ...
  • Perspective Taking. ...
  • Communicating. ...
  • Making Connections. ...
  • Critical Thinking. ...
  • Taking on Challenges. ...
  • Self-Directed, Engaged Learning.

What every teenager should know before leaving home? ›

10 Things Every Teen Should Know Before Leaving Home
  • 1 | How they learn. ...
  • 2 | How to live in the present. ...
  • 3 | To help others. ...
  • 4 | There's no such thing as deserving something. ...
  • 5 | There is more value in listening than in speaking. ...
  • 6 | Positive energy begets positive energy. ...
  • 7 | To stand up for what they believe in.
3 Jun 2017

What is one skill you think every teenager should learn to do? ›

Look for: self-awareness, social awareness, self-management, responsible decision-making, and the tools to build relationships in the 15 life skills we've gathered here: Teaching hint: don't assume anything and answer the questions kids ask even if they seem like common sense.

What are the basic elements of life skills PDF? ›

Defining Essential Life Skills
  • Communication and interpersonal skills. ...
  • Decision-making and problem-solving. ...
  • Creative thinking and critical thinking. ...
  • Self-awareness and empathy, which are two key parts of emotional intelligence. ...
  • Assertiveness and equanimity, or self-control.

What is one skill everyone should have? ›

Effective Communication

Whether we're talking about writing or speaking, communication is a vital life skill that encompasses both. No one makes it through this world alone, so learning to communicate with others will help you get where you need to be in life—and it's definitely a learned skill.

What are daily living skills? ›

Daily Living Skills are skills you use in your everyday life. They are activities in your home, at school, work or in the community. Things like cooking, cleaning, using money, exercising or getting around are considered Daily Living Skills. Interchange can support you with your Daily Living Skills.

What is a fun skill to learn? ›

16 Cool Skills You Can Learn in Your Spare Time
  • Learn video editing. ...
  • Pick up a new instrument. ...
  • Become an online instructor and teach people. ...
  • Learn how to solve a Rubix's cube. ...
  • Get into graphic design. ...
  • Learn to create video games. ...
  • Learn story writing. ...
  • Take up self-defense classes.
18 May 2022

What is the importance of life skills PDF? ›

It strengthens the ability of an individual to meet the needs and demands of the present society and helps in dealing with the above issues in a manner to get desired behavior practical. Imparting life skill training through inculcating life skill education will help youth to overcome such difficulties in life.

What is the most important thing for a teenager? ›

  1. 1 Family is Important. Although teens often give the impression they'd rather be doing almost anything other than spending time with their family, this is not the case. ...
  2. 2 Structure, Trust and Respect. Authority, rules and limits are all important in a teenager's life. ...
  3. 3 Time with Friends. ...
  4. 4 School and Other Things.

What life skills should be taught in middle school? ›

Life Skills Activities for Middle School Students Lead to Job Readiness
  • Social awareness.
  • Empathy + Respect.
  • Time Management.
  • Critical Thinking.
  • Collaboration + Leadership.
  • Communication + Persuasiveness.
3 Mar 2020

What is the most important lesson a teenager should learn about life? ›

Take Responsibility For Yourself

You can't live in victory if you're stuck playing the victim. Choose to see the unlovely about yourself and your actions. You can't change others, but you have to own your actions before you can change yourself.

What do normal teenagers do? ›

All teenagers are different. But many enjoy spending their free time doing things like shopping, going to parties, being with friends, gaming and using social media, texting, watching movies, reading and going to the beach or park.

How can a teen live a happy life? ›

14 Things You Need To Do During Your Teenage Years
  1. Take more photos. ...
  2. Actually print them out. ...
  3. Fall in love with something. ...
  4. Read more. ...
  5. Use your days. ...
  6. Get good at something. ...
  7. Save your own money. ...
  8. Write a letter to your favourite teacher.
18 Apr 2021

How can I improve myself as a teenager? ›

How to Improve Your Life as a Teenager
  1. 1) Set Goals.
  2. 2) Write Everything Down.
  3. 3) Invest in Yourself.
  4. 4) Actively Search for Hobbies.
  5. 5) Focus on Mental Health.
  6. 6) Get Into Fitness.
  7. 7) Always Educate Yourself.
  8. 8) Develop a Sleep Schedule.

What are youth life skills? ›

All youth need to develop a set of core life skills to manage school, work, outside interests, and social relationships successfully. From the perspective of brain development, these skills include planning, focus, self-control, awareness, and flexibility—also known as “executive function” and “self-regulation” skills.

What is the best skill to learn? ›

7 high-income skills to learn
  1. Data analysis. Analytical thinking and innovation is the top skill forecasted in the World Economic Forum's Future of Jobs Report [1]. ...
  2. Software development. ...
  3. User experience. ...
  4. Web development. ...
  5. Project management. ...
  6. Account management. ...
  7. Content creation and management.
29 Aug 2022

What are 21st century life skills? ›

The World Health Organization (WHO) identifies the fundamental life skills as decision-making and problem solving, creative thinking and critical thinking, communication and interpersonal skills, self-awareness and empathy, and coping with emotions and stress.

What is life skills in Grade R? ›

Life Skills is the backbone to teaching and learning in Foundation Phase, It encapsulates all foundational skills which is imperative to learn to read, write, (perceptual development) reason and think critically. It focusses on the holistic development of the learner.

What are the four components of life skills? ›

communication and interpersonal skills; self-awareness and empathy; assertiveness and equanimity; and. resilience and coping with emotions and coping with stress.

What is the most profitable skill to learn? ›

The best high income skills to learn include software engineering, sales, digital marketing, copywriting, web design, SEO, and trade skills. You can develop these skills through formal training programs, online courses, or free content from websites like YouTube.

What are some life skills you need to know? ›

Examples of Life Skills
  • Self-awareness.
  • Critical thinking.
  • Creative thinking.
  • Decision making.
  • Problem Solving.
  • Effective communication.
  • Interpersonal relationships.
  • Empathy.

How do I find my personal skills? ›

To identify your skills and decide what skills to develop, you could:
  1. think about what you do in your current job.
  2. reflect on your past education and work experiences.
  3. think about the skills you've gained in daily life.
  4. talk to people who know you well outside of work, for a different perspective.

What are the six activities of daily living? ›

The six ADLs are generally recognized as:
  • Bathing. The ability to clean oneself and perform grooming activities like shaving and brushing teeth.
  • Dressing. The ability to get dressed by oneself without struggling with buttons and zippers.
  • Eating. The ability to feed oneself.
  • Transferring. ...
  • Toileting. ...
  • Continence.
5 Mar 2021

What is an ADL checklist? ›

ADL / IADL Checklist. Using a person's functioning level as it relates to Activities of Daily Living (ADL) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) can help with determining the level of care assistance that person needs.

What are functional life skills? ›

Functional life skills are the skills that are necessary for daily living and for establishing quality of life. These are the skills that if not done by an individual him or herself, others will have to do.

Which skill is best for future? ›

What are the top skills you should learn for the future?
  1. Artificial intelligence. You don't need to work in the artificial intelligence (AI) field to expect to encounter AI in your workplace. ...
  2. Coding. ...
  3. Cloud computing. ...
  4. Blockchain. ...
  5. UX design. ...
  6. Critical thinking. ...
  7. Emotional intelligence. ...
  8. Communication.

How do I start a life skills program? ›

How to Start a Life Skills Training Center
  1. Find funding. Ask companies and businesses to donate money to start a life skills training center or seek donations from a private foundation. ...
  2. Obtain a facility. ...
  3. Purchase supplies and equipment. ...
  4. Arrange payment for services. ...
  5. Hire staff. ...
  6. Promote the center.

What is the meaning of life skills PDF? ›

Life skills are defined as “a group of psychosocial competencies and interpersonal skills that help people make informed decisions, solve problems, think critically and creatively, communicate effectively, build healthy relationships, empathize with others, and cope with and manage their lives in a healthy and ...

What are the three components of life skills? ›

These skills are usually clubbed into three major categories: Thinking skills (critical thinking, creative thinking, problem solving, decision making) Personal skills (self-awareness, self-management) Interpersonal skills (communication skills, empathy, cooperation etc.)

Why do schools not teach life skills? ›

Lack of resources, such as home economics rooms. To teach life skills, you need facilities like kitchens and sewing machines – but many schools don't have these things on-site! And if they do, they're often outdated and can be dangerous if mishandled by students who've never used them before (which is very likely).

What is soft skills for students? ›

Soft skills, sometimes called key skills, core skills, key competencies, or employability skills, are those desirable qualities that apply across a variety of jobs and life situations—traits such as integrity, communication, courtesy, responsibility, professionalism, flexibility, and teamwork.

What is the rule of 3 for survival? ›

You can survive for 3 Minutes without air (oxygen) or in icy water. You can survive for 3 Hours without shelter in a harsh environment (unless in icy water) You can survive for 3 Days without water (if sheltered from a harsh environment) You can survive for 3 Weeks without food (if you have water and shelter)

Why are survival skills important for teens? ›

The need for survival skills

They needed to know how to build a fire, to create a shelter, to forage for food—and many of them survived because of those skills. Today, although wilderness survival skills aren't necessarily essential for everyday life, they are still good to know for emergency situations.

Why are survival skills important? ›

These techniques are meant to provide basic necessities for human life which include water, food, and shelter. The skills also support proper knowledge and interactions with animals and plants to promote the sustaining of life over a period of time.

What teenagers need from their parents? ›

Young people going through the process of adolescence need what they have always needed from their parents. They want your love, your support, your encouragement, your nurture, acceptance and attention.

What is the best advice for a teenage girl? ›

10 Pieces Of Advice Moms Should Give To Their Teenage Girls
  • 3 Stand Up for Yourself.
  • 4 Education Matters. ...
  • 5 Ask for Help When You Need It. ...
  • 6 Be Proactive. ...
  • 7 It's Okay to Cry. ...
  • 8 Protect Yourself. ...
  • 9 Be Confident. ...
  • 10 Don't Be Afraid to Say No. ...
4 Sept 2019

What are 15 year olds called? ›

Teenagers (15-17 years of age)

What are the skills needed for adolescent stage? ›

During adolescence, children develop the ability to: Understand abstract ideas. These include grasping higher math concepts, and developing moral philosophies, including rights and privileges. Establish and maintain satisfying relationships.

What are the 7 essential life skills for adults? ›

These life skills include problem solving, critical thinking, communication skills, decision-making, creative thinking, interpersonal relationship skills, self awareness building skills, empathy and coping with stress skills.

How do you train a teenager? ›

12 Tips for Teaching Teens
  1. Talk like an adult, but remember they're still children. ...
  2. Be proactive, not reactive. ...
  3. Respond to the small stuff. ...
  4. Encourage appropriate self-expression. ...
  5. Find the hidden reason for misbehavior. ...
  6. Hold your ground today, and tomorrow will be better. ...
  7. Beware of free time. ...
  8. Show sincere appreciation.
27 May 2009

What are youth life skills? ›

All youth need to develop a set of core life skills to manage school, work, outside interests, and social relationships successfully. From the perspective of brain development, these skills include planning, focus, self-control, awareness, and flexibility—also known as “executive function” and “self-regulation” skills.

What is the most important thing for a teenager? ›

  1. 1 Family is Important. Although teens often give the impression they'd rather be doing almost anything other than spending time with their family, this is not the case. ...
  2. 2 Structure, Trust and Respect. Authority, rules and limits are all important in a teenager's life. ...
  3. 3 Time with Friends. ...
  4. 4 School and Other Things.

What is the most important lesson a teenager should learn about life? ›

Take Responsibility For Yourself

You can't live in victory if you're stuck playing the victim. Choose to see the unlovely about yourself and your actions. You can't change others, but you have to own your actions before you can change yourself.

What are the basic elements of life skills PDF? ›

Defining Essential Life Skills
  • Communication and interpersonal skills. ...
  • Decision-making and problem-solving. ...
  • Creative thinking and critical thinking. ...
  • Self-awareness and empathy, which are two key parts of emotional intelligence. ...
  • Assertiveness and equanimity, or self-control.

What is the importance of life skills PDF? ›

It strengthens the ability of an individual to meet the needs and demands of the present society and helps in dealing with the above issues in a manner to get desired behavior practical. Imparting life skill training through inculcating life skill education will help youth to overcome such difficulties in life.

What are practical life skills? ›

What Are Practical Life Skills? The term ' Practical Life Skills' refers to those skills we use in everyday life, such as changing a light bulb, preparing and cooking food, doing laundry, or essential household management.

What teenagers should do? ›

With that in mind, here are ten things your kids should be doing on their own by the time they're teenagers.
  • Wash their own laundry. ...
  • Earn and manage money. ...
  • Prepare meals. ...
  • Manage and complete their school work. ...
  • Politely and respectfully talk to adults. ...
  • How to deal with an emergency. ...
  • Navigate nearby areas.
23 Mar 2017

Why are life skills important for teenagers? ›

Why Is Teaching My Teen Life Skills So Important? Learning life skills doesn't just build independence, it also builds social-emotional learning skills that teens need such as self-awareness, social awareness, self-management, responsible decision-making, and the tools to create and maintain relationships.

What teenagers need from their parents? ›

Young people going through the process of adolescence need what they have always needed from their parents. They want your love, your support, your encouragement, your nurture, acceptance and attention.

What should every teenager do during their teenage years? ›

14 Things You Need To Do During Your Teenage Years
  • Take more photos. ...
  • Actually print them out. ...
  • Fall in love with something. ...
  • Read more. ...
  • Use your days. ...
  • Get good at something. ...
  • Save your own money. ...
  • Write a letter to your favourite teacher.
18 Apr 2021

What is the best advice for a teenage girl? ›

10 Pieces Of Advice Moms Should Give To Their Teenage Girls
  • 3 Stand Up for Yourself.
  • 4 Education Matters. ...
  • 5 Ask for Help When You Need It. ...
  • 6 Be Proactive. ...
  • 7 It's Okay to Cry. ...
  • 8 Protect Yourself. ...
  • 9 Be Confident. ...
  • 10 Don't Be Afraid to Say No. ...
4 Sept 2019

What every youth must know? ›

10 Things Every Young Person Should Know
  • Read Books. Read extensively. ...
  • Ask Questions. Don't be afraid to ask questions. ...
  • Be Yourself. Don't copy others. ...
  • Surround Yourself With Who You Want To Become. ...
  • Have A Role Model. ...
  • Don't Do Drugs. ...
  • Be Ready To Admit You Were Wrong. ...
  • Work On Your Communication Skills.
19 Dec 2016

What are some hard life lessons? ›

7 Brutal Life Lessons Everyone Has to Learn Multiple Times
  • The "Easy" Road Ends Up Being More Difficult. ...
  • The Roller Coaster of Love Needs a Speed Limit. ...
  • Small, Daily Habits Are More Important Than Big, Infrequent Home Runs. ...
  • Self-Knowledge Is Worth More Than Personal Achievement.
3 Oct 2016

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