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Things You Should Know How to Do Before You Turn 30

Updated October 16, 2020 6.5k votes 1.1k voters 202.8k views23 items

List RulesVote up the most valuable skills to know by age 30.

List of things you should know how to do before you turn 30--life skills, practical skills and social skills that you can and should master by the time you leave your 20s behind you. These are things everyone should know and should have figured out before they become full-blown adults and have families of their own. 

Many of the items on this list are skills every man should have and that every woman should know in order to feel confident and self-reliant. The more life skills you have, the easier it is to take chances and strive for greatness. Some skills people should have are simply practical--like knowing how to swim, build a fire or drive a manual transmission. These skills are relatively easy to learn and are based on facts you should know. Other of the life-skills on this list are more subtle and need to be learned over time--how to tell a good story, negotiate and set a longterm goal and meet it are examples of these skills. 

Since we all have different priorities in life and we all value skill sets differently, this list is an open list where users can add what they think everybody should know before 30 and vote for what they think.

See also: The Best Qualities in a Person, The Biggest Turn Ons in a Person and The Best Ways to Get Out of a Rut


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  • 1

    Know Cooking Basics

    Scramble an egg, bake a cake, steam vegetables... you may not be asked to compete on the next season of Top Chef, but you can make a simple meal for yourself without resorting to take out or calling your mother for help. 
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  • 2

    Handle Your Own Finances

    You have your own checking account and maybe even a savings account and maybe even a 401(k) or an IRA. You may still be saddled with student debt, but you at least have some foreseeable financial stability. 
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  • 3

    Be A Good Friend

    In your little corner of the world, you have your people and to those people you are a truly great friend. You show up for them and support them even if its not convenient for you. 
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  • 4

    Manage Your Time

    The night before a big project is due, you may still think it's a perfect time to organize your closet, scrub your shower and catch up on old emails, but at least now you don't try to do all of those things before you even start on your work.

    You generally know how long a task will take you to complete and you have stopped having to ask for deadline extensions (or pulling all-nighters).
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