In today’s digital age, young people are increasingly spending their lives indoors in front of computers, mobile devices and gaming consoles.
Sure, today’s young has access to an unprecedented wealth of information on their fingertips, but when it comes to practical skills like fixing a broken tap, sewing in a loose button or even socialising offline, they’re a far cry from their parents – the pre-internet generation that came right before them.
Here’s 12 essential life skills every young person today should pick up to save oneself from potentially embarrassing moments or even from life-threatening situations.
1. Culinary Skills
If all you’re cooking are instant noodles and frozen pizza, consider expanding your cooking skills. With all the on-demand food delivery services available today, it’s easy to convince oneself that home-cooked food is a thing of the past. Remember what mum said about lovingly prepared, home-cooked meals being the best? She’s probably right.
For starters, try tossing a salad or making comfort staples such as egg omelettes, rice and pasta. Learn how to marinate meat if you enjoy cooking a steak or burger on a grill which is always nice for outdoor parties.
If you’re living with your parents, you’re in luck. Take a position and observe how it’s done during meal preparation time. Otherwise, join a cooking class or get lessons from a friend. And no, you can’t import culinary skills from a cooking game.
2. First Aid, CPR, and the Heimlich Maneuver
You will never know when someone around you might get into a medical emergency. Knowing how to apply the Heimlich Maneuver to save
someone from choking, CPR to revive someone who’s had a water incident or a heart attack, or providing basic first aid to an accident victim are critical life-saving skills everyone should be equipped with.
In emergencies like these, there is no time to be wasted on searching online for solutions. And even if you are able to google at the speed of lighting, applying first-aid maneuvers without real-life training is ineffective at best, hazardous at worst.
3. Swimming and Staying Afloat
When was the last time you put aside all your electronic devices and went out for a swim? Even if you have taken swimming classes as a child, are you sure you have not forgotten how to stay afloat in water for at least a couple of minutes?
Swimming is an essential life skill that might one day save your life or that of a loved one. Besides, it’s fun and great exercise that doesn’t put pressure on those joints the way jogging or cycling does.
If you can’t swim, wait no more! Unlike languages, swimming is something you can’t learn online. So unplug yourself from the internet for a few hours of swimming lessons each week. It’s a great way to relax too.
4. Driving A Manual Transmission Car
With high tech driving machines and even driverless cars in the horizon, knowing how to drive a manual, shift-stick vehicle is invaluable and comes in handy when you ever need to drive an older car – during a holiday in a less developed country, or even in an emergency.
The most challenging part in driving a manual transmission car for the occasional manual driver is probably parallel parking, so it might be worth rehearsing a couple of times before heading out into the wild!
5. Basic Car Troubleshooting
Basic car troubleshooting skills every young driver should be equipped with include measuring tyre pressure, checking and reading oil levels, changing a tyre, jump-starting a dead battery using jumper cables.
Replacing stuff like engine oil, brake fluid and transmission fluid are best left to the mechanic unless you have prior hands-on training – following an online tutorial on a first attempt is highly discouraged.
Stay-tuned to Part 2 where we share seven more essential life skills every young person today should have!