25 Skills Every Woman Should Know

I wrote this a while ago, but never posted it.  For the life of me I can’t remember why.  It was in response to the list Popular Mechanics wrote of 25 Skills Every Man Should Know back in September of 2007.  This list may not be exhaustive, it is only 25 skills, but I think they are all essential.  You might disagree with some or you may think something else takes precedence.  If so, please leave a note in the comments.  If you can convince me you are correct, I’ll make a change.

  1. Keep a confidence
  2. Maintain a person/s who knows where you are and what you are doing most of the time.
  3. Have at least 2 friends who will tell you that your butt looks fat in those jeans.
  4. Say no graciously but firmly
  5. Handle finances (banking, checking, balancing, etc.)
  6. Negotiate for a car/know who to take with you
  7. Change a tire and jump start a car (and have the proper tools in the trunk)
  8. Form a logical argument/defense on an issue and argue from facts and not emotions.
  9. Read a map
  10. Kill insects, mice, rats and other pests
  11. Basic first aide & CPR
  12. Turn on and operate the electronic equipment in the house
  13. Reset the electrical panel after a storm/surge shuts off a circuit
  14. Plan and host a party start to finish
  15. Cook at least 3 separate meals from scratch
  16. Put out a kitchen fire
  17. Basic/intermediate food safety
  18. Set a table properly for several different occasions
  19. How to do laundry
  20. Change a diaper
  21. Walk a city street w/out becoming a target
  22. Hail a taxi
  23. Choose an exquisite perfume
  24. Swim
  25. Self defense basics

Notes below the fold.

Cheryl Mendelson has two books that cover nearly all the housekeeping arts, and they are arts, Home Comforts and Laundry.  Both of these books are invaluable, most of us don’t know how to properly fold clothes, get out stains and plan a cleaning schedule for a year, but all of that is really essential to keeping up a home.  Since all of us live somewhere, it’s our job to keep a good home.

#24. This is non negotiable, in fact, that’s a skill I think every HUMAN should have, it’s just that important.

#23. It doesn’t have to be expensive, just good on you.  All of us have been forced to smell someone wearing a perfume that clashes with their body chemistry.  Take someone with you, actually several someones, girlfriends preferably who tell the truth, and try some out.  Take samples home and wear them with nothing else, (not naked, just no other scents) and see how they smell after an hour or four.

#17. Don’t kill your family, learn how to store raw chicken properly!

#2.  Just do this.  In this day and age, it’s important to have someone keeping tabs on you.

#4.  Saying no is a lovely and beautiful thing.  Saying no firmly but graciously is vital.

#9.  Reading a map may seem like an absurd skill when GPS is on your phone, but just do it.  Systems fail, lose power and are sometimes dead wrong.  A map can give you a wider understanding of an area and gives you options that just don’t come from Mapquest.

#8.  I’m not talking about a fight, I’m talking about forming an informed opinion and defending it using logic, facts and persuasion credibly.  If you tell me something is so because you feel it is so I’m going to assume that you have absolutely no idea what the heck the issue is and why you believe what you do.  In short, I’m forced to distrust you.  Base your opinions on research, read both sides, make lists and THEN figure out where you are in the opinion spectrum.  All too often women base their views on their emotional responses to something.  That is just how we are hard wired.

#16.  As you love your family, learn how to properly put out an electrical fire and a grease fire.  Hint: it doesn’t involve water!

#15.  Cooking isn’t difficult, it just requires some knowledge and willingness to follow instructions.  In my last post I mentioned a number of cookbooks that would be helpful.  Start with The Joy of Cooking and move on from there.  You can not get fresher or more healthful food than if you yourself make it.  Keeping #17 in mind, of course.

#1.  Without this you won’t have those wonderful friends who are willing to tell you your butt looks fat.  Believe me, you want them.  You really do.

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4 Responses to 25 Skills Every Woman Should Know

  1. Brandi says:

    I think it’s a pretty good list. The only thing I would add is know the correct terms for your girl parts (and know the terms for boy parts, too) and know how they work. And know how to do a self breast exam.

    I don’t know if the list is order of importance or not–if it is, then I’d say number 4 should be number 1.

  2. vivianlouise says:

    WordPress is wonky today. The list is numbered correctly when I go to edit. I don’t know what’s up with that.

    Yup, Brandi, correct on the breast exam. I should add that.

    If they were ordered, Swimming would be #1. To me, it’s just that important.

  3. Dana says:

    I think the ability to say No, firmly, graciously and without wavering is vitally important to women – both young and old. Too many unintended consequences in the lives of women because they just *could not* say no – didn’t want to hurt someone’s feelings, didn’t want to put themselves first, played the martyr ( a no win), pre-conditioning as a woman to agree with everything, everyone, etc… this would be number one on my list.

    Perfume: Estee Lauder’s Poeme. Bliss.

  4. Emm says:

    I agree that swimming should be up there in the top- from just about birth preferably and taught without resort to devices. infants can and should be taught to instantly roll over and float and it should go from there. (sorry- it is a soapbox of mine)

    Breast exams and the proper names and uses for the proper parts are too. How can we expect humans to have any self respect or respect for others if they do not know what they are respecting? Not to mention how can they do first aid if they do not know what they are taking care of and how to do so?

    I have problems implementing the argument without resorting to emotion- always have – and the gracious “no”. I agree that both are completely vital to both women- and men also (having raised three men I know that they too are put in situations where they have to say ‘no’ and mean it the same way we do)

    does cheese and crackers count as one of the meals??

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