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Things You Should Have on You Every Day That You (Probably) Don't:

Things You Should Have on You Every Day That You (Probably) Dont:

Being an adult is more than just reaching adulthood. There is quite a bit of responsibility that one must successfully handle to truly show they're fit for day-to-day life. Preparation is a key part of that. You can't do well on a university exam without studying, you can't get to work without fuel in your car, and you can't survive a freak storm without emergency supplies. All of these situations take proper preparation and execution. While I can't tell you what to have with you for every situation, I can give you some tips on what you should have on your person every day you leave your dwelling to make your life (and possibly others' lives) easier.

A flashlight:

The SureFire Sidekick. I personally carry this light as its quite powerful for its size, rechargeable, and small.
The SureFire Sidekick. I personally carry this light as it's quite powerful for its size, rechargeable, and small.

This is getting mentioned first as it is the most important. Many of us leave for work early and come home late, a flashlight helps us conquer those dark moments. You might think your phone is a good substitute, but phones typically have weak lights with short-range and an auto-turn off feature. In addition, your phone is fragile and its battery life is much better served for emergency phone calls than light. New LED flashlights from brands like SureFire are rechargeable, durable, bright, affordable, and have a decent range. I use them for walking down sidewalks, checking around my car when I walk up to it in dark parking lots, finding lost items on the floor, and there have even been a couple of times at my old job during power outages where I was the only one still able to work because I had a flashlight on hand. Flashlights also improve your personal defense, as few assailants want to attack someone who can see them coming and make them visible. A flashlight is a necessary item to have on you.

A pen and something to write with:

While not required, waterproof paper and ink is a nice edition.
While not required, waterproof paper and ink is a nice edition.

It is surprising the number of people who don't carry at least a pen or two on them. Even though many things are done electronically these days, a pen & paper are still important items to keep on you. While neither the pen nor paper have to be anything fancy, a nice space or waterproof ink pen and also a tearproof/waterproof notebook is helpful. These notes can be used to help you quickly jot something down before you forget, exchange phone numbers/business info, write information down with ease while talking with a phone up to your ear, etc. I've seen too many situations where difficulty was created because someone didn't have a pen on them, don't let yourself get sucked into that.

A watch, and no, not a smartwatch:

Me rocking my Casio AWGM100B-1A watch.
Me rocking my Casio AWGM100B-1A watch.

A watch is a great tool to add to your everyday life. Not only are they stylish and add to your professional appearance, but they are also convenient. Many believe watches are unnecessary now that smartphones tell time as standard. However, your phone has a limited battery life, and there are many situations you can't use a phone (university exams, meetings, etc.). It also is a stupid situation that you'd pull something out of your pocket to check time as if you were living in the 19th-century. I am counting against smartwatches as well since they also suffer from shorter battery life and again, those same situations you can't use a smartphone, a smartwatch typically isn't allowed either.

A good watch, such as any Casio G-Shock, is very durable, unlike the smart devices. Mine not only is waterproof, but it has also been bumped and dropped multiple times, including going through a dryer. Meanwhile, it solar charges, auto-updates time by NIST radio synchronization, and is 20-25% the price of a smartwatch. Get a good standard watch, and you will be able to wear it for many years to come.

A good multitool:

The Leatherman Wingman, an affordable, yet high-quality multitool, useful in many situations. I carry one.
The Leatherman Wingman, an affordable, yet high-quality multitool, useful in many situations. I carry one.

A multi-tool is by far one of the most useful things to have on you. While you likely can't fix your car on the side of the road with it, it's like carrying a simple toolbox in your pocket. I have saved a lot of time and come to the rescue by doing quick fixes with the screwdriver attachments. The pliers have helped torque some nuts down on loose bolts. The bottle opener is obvious in its usefulness and the filer has helped me clean up my nails. I don't use the wire cutters or knife very often (next section explains why), but I have used my multi-tool for over 2 years now on the job and in everyday life. A good multi-tool will save you from embarrassment and save time from having to get a toolbox for simple jobs.

A good pocket knife:

The Spyderco Para 3, the knife that I own and carry with me.
The Spyderco Para 3, the knife that I own and carry with me.

While most multi-tools have knife attachments, they are not meant for heavy-duty use. A quality pocket knife, however, can be used to cut many different things over and over before needing to be resharpened. Pocket knives are also one of those tools you likely will be finding yourself using quite often. Cutting through cardboard, thick plastic, and tape off packages is what I use them most for, but there are a variety of other uses such as opening letters, cutting cables, and even for emergency situations such as cutting the seatbelt off someone in a car accident.

When it comes to recommendations, my first is checking your local laws. In certain states or municipalities, knives a person can carry must sometimes be of a certain blade length or shorter, sometimes a certain overall length folded or under, sometimes must be foldable, and sometimes can only be manual opening, with no spring assist. Where I used to live, a pocket knife of only a 3" blade or under could be carried concealed, which is why I got the Para 3 above instead of the longer Paramilitary 2. Second, unless you work in a field such as Emergency response where you are likely to damage/lose your knife often, stay away from the cheaper 400-series blades in the $30-$50 range. Not that blades of this price from Buck or Kershaw are bad, but blades from brands such as Spyderco, CRKT, Benchmade, usually have a much more durable, strong, and corrosion-resistant steel for the blade, even if it's more expensive. CPM-S30V blade steel is by far my favorite grade of steel, and it is for many others (CPM-S35VN is also a great choice). Knives with this steel typically fall in the $80-$140 range but will last you for many years of use with occasional sharpening. It is an investment.

A lighter:

Things You Should Have on You Every Day That You (Probably) Dont:

Even if you don't smoke, carrying a lighter on you can provide some benefits. First, you might save a friend or make one who does smoke by letting them get a light. I've ran into this situation twice already this past year. Second, they are good for emergency lighting. If the power goes out and some candles are around, you can easily provide some light to an otherwise dark space. I would put this on a lower priority than other items on this list, however.

A portable charger and very small charging cable:

Things You Should Have on You Every Day That You (Probably) Dont:

In the world of today's smartphones, having charging cables and a portable charger is a good idea. You never know when you or a friend might need to get their phone some extra juice. This is helpful for marking emergency phone calls, keeping enough juice to catch that taxi or ridesharing service, capture the last photos of a party, etc. You don't necessarily need to carry these on your person, especially if you are smart about your battery use and charging habits, but have them at least in your car, bag, or workstation.

A small first aid kit:

My modified first aid kit has typical bandages but also a lot of common cold/sickness medicine packs.
My modified first aid kit has typical bandages but also a lot of common cold/sickness medicine packs.

Cuts, headaches, and stomach aches can happen at any time. You don't need to take a large kit around with you, but a small pocket-sized kit that contains things like bandaids, alcohol wipes, and common medicines for headaches, stomach upsets, and colds is a good idea. I have prevented the need for me to leave for home, stop by a store, or kept my coworkers bright-eyed and working strong from fixing cuts and getting some medicine to stop soreness or headaches right then and there.

Things You Should Have on You Every Day That You (Probably) Dont:

Thank you for reading and I hope you learned something today, and consider adding some of these items to your everyday life. This list was not meant to exhaustive, and some things that people often carry on them every day such as mints/gum weren't mentioned. I did not mention firearms as that ability to carry varies greatly from person to location. Feel free to share your experiences and other items you'd recommend for carrying below!

Things You Should Have on You Every Day That You (Probably) Don't:
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Most Helpful Guy

  • MrOracle
    I have a Space Pen, a Sharpie, a flashlight, and a knife on me everywhere I go, in addition to my phone, of course.

    In each of my vehicles, I have a small shoulder bag with additional items (light, whistle, battery bank, spare glasses, magnifying glass, lighter and matches, expanded first aid kit, parachute cord, carabiners, notepad, multitool, space blanket, collapsible cup, and a bunch more) and a larger bag with a full change of clothes (including shoes and jacket) and other items, and it's very, very rare that I am far from one of my vehicles.
    Is this still revelant?

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What Girls & Guys Said

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  • musicbrain5
    A good basic list for any given situation. A couple of things though:

    A pen and paper is a great idea. However, a pencil is far more reliable, especially a mechanical pencil with extra lead. Most pens will freeze or not work properly in cold temperatures. If you live somewhere where the temperature regularly drops to -10 C or below, or even stays below freezing for long periods during the winter, a pen is extremely unreliable. I’ve been caught before and I learned my lesson. Always keep a pencil in your car or bag, preferably a mechanical one so you don’t need to sharpen it.

    Second. Obviously you’re not a woman so you wouldn’t know or think of this, but women who get periods should always have extra pads or tampons, and an extra pair of underwear and pants/skirt. Sometimes your body has it’s own damn schedule, and getting stuck in public bleeding from the crotch is one of the worst feelings.

    Also be careful where you plan on carrying your knife. Some workplaces and schools bar them from their premises.
  • Blitzkrieg_88
    Flashlight- Mobile Phone performs this. Pen- Mobile Phone performs this
    Watch- Mobile Phone performs this. Watches can now be mobile phones.
    Most people I know keep a torch and pen in their vechile. Watches have somply been replaced by phones.
    I keep tools in my car as well as fed different pocket knives.
    I dont keep a cigarette lighter but more of a few BBQ lighters. I keep waterproof matches and an outdoors camping lighter for when I'm camping or hunting.
    I keep a portable charger though but usually not on me. If it's going to be a long time before I charge my phone I go to the power saving app which will double or triple your phone's charge.
    I keep a first aid kit in the Trunk of my car.
    I also keep a gun in my car.
    Honestly a lot of stuff on your list will just weigh a person down and functions can be performed by devices with multi functions, anything to speed up a racehorse. Like your already carrying a lot on your person.
    1. Wallet
    2. Phone
    3. Keys
    4. Wrist watch
    5. Flashlight
    6. Pocket knife
    7. Multi-tool
    8. Pen
    9. Comb
    10. Handkerchief
    11. Notebook
    12. Charger
    13. Earphones
    14. MP3 player
    15. USB pen
    16. Camera
    17. Cigarettes, cigars, dobbie
    18. Flask
    19. Camera
    You can get yourself a satchel or some sort of manbag to help you carry all this stuff a long with a portable charger, or laptop but truthfully a smartphone will perform the functions of a lot of things on this lost such as A flashlight, pen, notebook, camera, mp3 player, computer, notebook, USB pen drive, newspaper, your wallet, tablet , laptop, a watch as well as even your set of keys. A good multi-tool will have a blade on it.
    For a young single man I'd recommend at least 3 condoms in his wallet.
  • Likes2drive
    Good mytake, I have all this in my car, always have a small pocket knife on me and a pen most times, I used to keep my rechargeable watch with built in flashlight from MTM timepieces on me but stopped wearing things on my wrists. Definitely good to be prepared though
  • I have all them but a cell phone charger. I dont own a cell phone. But I do have CB and Ham radios in my trucks and cars all the time.

    Plus I always carry spare blankets and a gun or bow and arrow.

    When you live in bear and wolf country alway be ready for a animal attack
  • tara987
    One issue with carrying some of these things is security. If you go to school or some offices, a small knife or tool might be against the rules. You can also take notes or write things down on your phone. If you're a woman, a tampon or sanitary pad is good to have even if it's for you to lend another girl in a public bathroom.
  • andreasderjuengere
    Although your suggestions make some sense for certain situations in life, I don't fully agree.
    Begin often labelled a 'Macgyver' myself, I'd rather recommend to have on me:
    - background knowledge
    - ideas, creativity and imagination
    And some clothing, of course.
  • Shamalien
    why is a first aid kit not in the top 3 looool this is hilarious. Also, most leatherman's have locking knives which are very good and totally useable, you don't need a pocketknife if you have a leatherman skeletool or signal or anything beefier than those (those are the lightest weight models with good knifes as far as I know)
  • blutwolfe
    I have almost all of them except a watch and a first aid kit in my truck.
  • broncobryan
    I totally agree with this post. I carry all of the above with me every single day no matter where I'm going or what I'm doing.
  • Pipeliner87
    Wow I hate to say it but you carry way more shit than I need. I need a phone my pipeliners rig and one hour on a job site to make 165 bucks an hour.
  • NerdInDenial
    You should carry a weapon as well.
    • Small knife counts as that.

    • @Screenwriter a gun works better or taser.

    • I don't want to use a gun on someone. And I've only ever had one encounter in my life that was dangerous. And he had a gun too and I had no opportunity to reach for anything. So, there's no guarantee.

    • Show All
  • Liam_Hayden
    Everything except for the watch. Never bonded with them. I do have a windup clock in my car.
  • hahahmm
    You’re building a purse, bro.

    • front2back

      Backpacks or suitcases can easy hold all these items. Most of what I listed fits in your pocket.

    • hahahmm

      You’re focused on surviving a 5 hour traffic jam. Think bigger

  • themomo84
    Good ideas and love my leatherman tool!
  • Dean269
    thanks for sharing
  • Anonymous
    Too much to carry on a regular day. How will all this fit into my pockets?
    • Get a purse 😂😂

    • Anonymous

      @musicbrain5 I'm not a girl. I'm not transgender. I'm not a crossdresser. No purses for me. Only backpacks.

    • It was a joke, chill.

    • Show All
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