Life Skills Education
Manifesto for a Movement
A national commitment to Life Skills Education is the single most impactful action that we, as a nation, can take to improve the quality of life for all Americans. Insuring that everyone is empowered with the basic skills of day to day living will do more to transform our society than anything else we can do.
Life Skills Education is easy to understand, cost effective, and available to all regardless of socio-economic status. The basics can be incorporated into our education system and amplified through public service campaigns supported by our business, political, media and academic institutions. The goal of the Life Skills Education movement is to make these essential truths part of our daily lives.
Every day we are asked to make multiple decisions regarding the management of our personal finances. The accumulated wisdom we bring to these decisions impacts every moment of our lives, every choice that we make.
Numerous studies point to a clear connection between our financial health and our physical, mental, and emotional health. Financial issues are the clearest predictor of divorce and the most consistent catalyst for stress in our society.
Yet, even given this compelling evidence we receive little instruction of this paramount skill. Most who do achieve success in this area do so because they have taken it upon themselves to access this life changing information. And, many who do have experienced that moment where they say to themselves; why wasn’t I taught this years ago?
When all Americans are fully equipped to effectively manage their personal finances the quality of life for all our citizens will be improved. The stress of creating a secure retirement will be greatly reduced. Our divorce rate will go down and the demands on our publicly funded retirement programs will be lessened.
And, when all Americans learn of their power to stay well and minimize illness another huge step to improving the quality of life for all will be achieved. A country that enjoys greater health and less sickness is well within our grasp.
We experience many more health problems than we need to. Much of our healthcare spending is spent treating “lifestyle diseases.” Many of these diseases are caused by poor health habits begun early in life. Bad habits can be changed, or, better still, prevented.
A national commitment to instilling the habits of good health early in life would lead to lower health care costs, a reduced need for medications, and, happier, healthier, longer lives. What’s that old cliche; as long as you have your health.
Lastly, when all Americans understand that the quality of their lives is very much determined by the quality of their relationships, starting with themselves, the life experience of all will be enriched. This great truth has been confirmed by many as they near the end of their lives.
How one creates better relationships is subjective but the benefits of improving our personal connections cannot be questioned. Again, the purpose of the Life Skills Education movement is to raise the awareness, the consciousness of these skills. To make everyone aware of the power they have to improve their lives.
Life Skills have been defined by the World Health Organization as "abilities for adaptive and positive behavior that enable individuals to deal effectively with the demands and challenges of everyday life. Practicing Life Skills leads to qualities such as self-esteem, sociability and tolerance. They empower one to take action and generate change.”
At its core the Life Skills Eduction movement is about preventing problems from starting. So much of our suffering is unnecessary. The goal of the movement is to make this part of our national conversation. The impact on our country would be enormous.