Introducing Heading Out On Your Own: 31 Basic Life Skills in 31 Days

One of the most important lessons we need to learn in life is how to be self-sufficient. Learning these skills will help us when disaster strikes and our lives are at risk.

The “heading out on your own pdf” is a book that teaches 31 basic life skills in 31 days. It also includes a journal to keep track of progress.

Basic life skills man leaving home college illustration.

This essay series is now available as a professionally designed, distraction-free paperback or ebook that you can read at your leisure while offline.

Dwight D. Eisenhower (yes, Ike again — I couldn’t fit all the fascinating facts about him into our leadership series!) was responsible for a variety of household tasks as a child, as well as watching his younger siblings. Ike was in charge of cooking for his whole family when his mother became ill and was sequestered in a room in the home for many months. His mother would yell orders to him from her bed on how to prepare the meals (this experience gave Ike a lifelong love of cooking). After graduating from high school, Eisenhower began working as an engineer in an ice factory at a creamery. He worked 84 hours a week, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year, from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. Despite his funds, he didn’t want his college education to place any financial strain on his parents, so he applied to the Naval Academy. He and his friend, who also wished to attend a military college, were sent away for previous entrance examinations, and after working all night, Ike would sleep for a few hours and then go over to his friend’s gas lighting store, where they would study together every afternoon until Ike had to return to the ice plant. Eisenhower ended up at West Point and was ready to strike the ground running when he arrived. That was in the year 1915.

Brett McKay graduated from high school in 2001 and, after working at a paint shop for a summer, left home to attend the University of Oklahoma as a freshman. I’d never done my laundry before. I had never cleaned a bathroom on my own before. Unless platters of nachos count, I’d never cooked for myself before. I was a normal middle-class child from the suburbs who struggled when I moved away from home for the first time. I graduated with a 2.6 GPA in the autumn semester and returned home to attend a community college in my hometown.

My parents, bless their hearts, had attempted to prepare me for leaving the nest, but they were also ready to do a lot of things for me, and as a naive adolescent, I didn’t see any need to refuse the gift horse and learn how to do them myself. I finally picked up a lot of the essential life skills I had previously lacked, but I wish I had done a better job of preparing myself to be independent and self-sufficient after I had left the coop.

Heading Out on Your Own: 31 Basic Life Skills in 31 Days is an introduction to the book Heading Out on Your Own: 31 Basic Life Skills in 31 Days.

August starts tomorrow, which means that in just one month, millions of young men around the nation will be preparing to attend college and/or move out on their own. To assist our young readers avoid making the same errors I did, we’ve chosen to run a series called “Heading Out on Your Own: 31 Basic Life Skills in 31 Days” throughout the month of August.


The purpose of this series is simple: to assist young men who are venturing out on their own for the first time in learning some of the fundamental life skills they will need to succeed once they are living alone.

During the month of August, we’ll post one piece a day on a different fundamental life skill I wish I had mastered before leaving home. Topics will vary from personal finance to fundamental home-ec skills, and we’ll employ a variety of forms (written articles, videos, and illustrated tutorials). While we won’t be able to cover every skill a young man needs to master before leaving home in only 31 days, we expect to have covered enough to enable a young man to flourish while living independently by the end of the month. Even if you’re a young guy who knows everything, it’s a good idea to go over everything again before you go.

What about those of us who have been around a while and know what we’re talking about?

If you’re an older reader concerned about having to go through a month of just fundamental life skills articles, don’t be! This daily series is in addition to our normal programming (we’re gluttons for punishment!). Our regular weekly material will continue to be relevant and of interest to you.

Even if you’ve already mastered the abilities we’ll be discussing, we invite you to participate in the conversation on each topic. The more knowledge you have about each talent, the better.

Please forward this link to any young guy you know who will benefit from this series. Encourage him to sign up for our daily email newsletter or follow us on Twitter or Facebook for tips on how to prepare to live independently.

Are there any specific skills you believe we should cover?

While we’ve already planned out the most of the 31 talents, we’re interested if there are any abilities in particular that you believe we should cover. If so, please share them in the comments section. If we get a large number of excellent recommendations that do not make the cut this time, we may consider including them in a future edition next summer!



The “self-sufficient man” is a man who has the skills to survive on his own and provides for himself. These 31 life skills are designed to help you learn how to be self-sufficient in your daily life.

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