Life Skills Topics

By Debbie Flowers
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Life skills can be defined as those skills necessary for productive everyday living. To achieve personal fulfillment, everyone should work toward mastering basic life skills. There are many lists of skills available, but most can be divided into activities that affect self, family, friends and society.


Life skills pertaining to management of one’s personal life should include the areas of learning, identity and fitness. An individual needs to learn skills such as cooking basic meals, cleaning his environment, managing his money and organizing his time. He should also explore his personal identity -- his personality traits, boundaries and passions. A study of self-related life skills will also include understanding the physical hygiene, reproduction and fitness.

Family and Immediate Environment

Life skills pertaining to friends and family encompass communication, cooperation and conflict resolution. These areas can be further broken down into studies of differing personality traits, developing a “teamwork” mentality and developing the attributes of a successful leader.

Social Issues

In our global society, a range of social skills are important. Expanding on relationship skills, we need to learn about citizenship and responsibility. Citizenship studies may include learning how to use your personal gifts by volunteering as well as how to use resources wisely. Responsibility skills can be covered by a study of community expectations and learning how to positively relate to employers and coworkers.


There are life skill assessment tools available, which can be obtained from medical professionals, education facilities and Internet resources. Some are free, and some require a fee to order a kit and receive feedback. Many are developed to assess life skills for specific groups -- teens, American Indians, drug abusers or foster children -- but they can be adapted to be useful for other individuals as well.

About the Author

Debbie Flowers holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Education in elementary education and has extensive experience as a teacher--in the traditional classroom as well as homeschool and piano studio and private lessons. She also has worked as an English tutor and helped develop an online writing service on a college campus.