10 Life Skills Every Parent Should Teach Their Kids

7. How To Be Alone

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Learning to embrace alone time is a skill everyone can benefit from. “Parents need to teach their kids to learn to love the time they take by themselves and to trust the wisdom that comes from within when we take that time,” says licensed mental health counselor Jill Sylvester, author of Trust Your Intuition: 100 Ways to Transform Anxiety and Depression for Stronger Mental Health.

8. How To Trust Their Own Instincts

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Teaching your kids to follow their gut instincts can help keep them safe, healthy, and happy both in childhood and beyond. “Teaching kids how to trust their own inner guidance versus seeking outside sources that so often can be conflicting with our own wants and needs, is a helpful tool as they grow and develop,” says Sylvester.

9. How To Be Empathetic To Others

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“It’s important for parents to respect the natural empathy of their children and to nurture and develop it,” says special educator Donna Garfinkel, co-director of New York City-based Early Childhood Associates. “Encourage your child to build empathy by teaching them to help others.”

10. How To Listen Effectively

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There’s a major difference between truly listening to someone and just waiting for your turn to speak—and the sooner parents can teach their kids the former, the better. So, how does one go about honing this skill? “Reading to them, watching a movie together, or telling stories can help develop listening skills,” suggests Garfinkel.

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