Balance a budget
The old advice used to be that everyone needed to know how to balance their checkbook, but thanks to digital banking and credit cards, it seems that check registers have gone the way of the woolly mammoth. But that doesn’t mean that budgeting, perhaps the most important household skill there is, should too. In lieu of a physical accounting, make sure you know how to track your income and expenses. You can create your own spreadsheet at home or use an app like You Need a Budget, but whatever you do, make sure you do it. Check out our tips for making a budget you can realistically stick to.
For such a short word, it’s amazing how many of us have a hard time saying it. But learning how to graciously but firmly say “no”—without padding it with excuses or white lies—is a critical life skill. If you’re one of those people who automatically says “yes” when someone asks you to do something and feels guilty saying “no,” try saying “I need to think about it” instead. That will give you time to think through your schedule and decide if it’s something you can really do without the pressure of having the person’s pleading eyes boring into you. And remember: Every time you say “yes” to one thing (like working late), you’re also saying “no” to everything else (like the gym, dinner with your family, and a reasonable bedtime). Here’s how to say no to the annoying things in life.