You remember the novelty of turning 18, you’re finally an adult, you can do anything you want, right? Wrong! That’s the bait and by the time you realize being an adult is the greatest racket ever, responsibilities snap around your shoulders like a noose and it’s already too late. A common feeling among most young adults-of which I’m foremost-is that feeling of unpreparedness. You don’t have the faintest idea what you’re doing, where you’re going, you’re just playing by the ear and every other person seems to have their life figured out even down to how they’ll die. Well, we don’t, at least most of us don’t (If you think you do, you don’t. Don’t argue with me). Well if you are familiar with the feeling you have come to the right place because neither do I know what I am doing. Epp me, please!
In truth, nobody can teach, or be taught, how to be a successful adult. What is well within the reach of mere mortals like you and I is achieving pecuniary independence and self-sustenance, two very fundamental parts of being a successful adult. If you are a young adult, these two elements will indubitably be quite a challenge to attain given that you are most likely in the process of rounding up your studies, getting your first job, starting a business or moving out from your parent’s home; every so often all at the same time. If you are going through these challenges, then the following will offer you some recommendations on how to sail through them.
1. Get Intimate with Your Father:
Ewww not that intimate, get your mind out of the gutter. And not that father either. By Father, I speak of our God, maker of the heavens, breaker of chains, consuming fire, mighty fortress and the appellations go on and on and on and on and on (you get the drift). Have you ever wondered what God would introduce himself as if you met? Don’t think too far. He would call himself Father, your Father. Of all the seemingly grandiose names he could choose to refer to his person he chooses ‘Father’ not least because that is who he is but also because it reminds us how we should relate to him. We can never know God better than knowing him as Father. Jesus came, lived, died and is risen again that we know and be reconciled to our Father. So, study God’s word knowing it’s your Father speaking to you, and speak back knowing a father listens, a father cares. This knowledge not only revolutionizes our life as Christians but also leads us to true independence, resting only on God as a child counts on Father.
2. Never Stop Learning:
The world is changing continuously and novel discoveries are made every day. If you harbour any disbelief (You should really be rid of this awful habit of doubting me Thomas), take for instance this new discovery you just made today, this article! A young adult can’t afford to not be up to date on issues concerning the world. For real, you’re an adult now! You can’t let all those small children of nowadays know that we don’t know any more than they do. You might, or might not, be done with your formal education but education for self-development is one that never stops. Reading books, using the internet constructively, surfing through educative articles (like this one) and podcasts online, attending seminars and workshops, networking, and taking courses are great ways to expand your awareness and improve yourself. Through constant learning, you obtain new abilities which can be very helpful in your career on the long run.
3. Expand Your Horizon:
Do not be afraid of trying new things. Got a dream you want to pursue or a talent/skill/ability that has been underutilized over the years? This is the time to develop it. If you’ve got a skill, there will be someone willing to pay you for it. Creating numerous revenue streams will not only build your personal wealth but serve you well as you get older. With today’s unpredictable labour market, it’s helpful to have other sources of income coming in. An easy way to increase your revenue is through a side hustle. Side-hustles are little mini-businesses that you can run when you’re not doing your day job. It could be something as simple as making arts and crafts or providing services. Just ensure it’s something you’re passionate about, reduces the stress and could even end up being your main hustle someday.
4. Be In Control of Your Finances:
This would probably be the toughest bit, but it still has to be done. If you don’t begin to get your finances together now it gets much harder much later. Take charge of your finances by having a soundly plotted out budget and a disciplined saving régime.
A budget gives you a bird’s eye view of your fiscal life. Click To Tweet It sheds light on bad spending habits and helps inhibit the threat of overspending on inconsequential items and under saving for key needful goals. When you know where all your money is going, it makes it easier to cut costs and start saving. How much should you save? Start from the level you can but start all the same. Important reasons for saving include reserve funds (these are for necessary for unforeseen incidents like car repairs, health care, or job loss), advancing your education, weddings, luxury items and trips (because you deserve to spoil yourself every now and then) and retirement. If you have children at this stage, then saving for them, especially their education is paramount.
5. Your Health is Wealth:
In youth, your body is strong enough to bear some of the abuse you put it through – from unhealthy food to barely sufficient sleep. But you won’t be forever young. The lifestyle you develop now can affect you decades from now. It pays to start eating right, not necessarily following fads or diets but eating a well-rounded balanced meal. Getting 6-8 hours of sleep is important to help you perform at the top of your game. Exercise is also essential, whether aerobic exercises like walking or anaerobic exercises like weight lifting. It might take a lot of effort but your future self will thank you for it.
6. Take Charge Of Your Life:
This is not the time to blame your parents (or lack thereof), anyone or anything for decisions made in the past. Take charge of your life. Paying your bills when they are due, living within your means, and avoiding reckless expenditure should be utmost at this stage. If you are still struggling and trying to build healthier habits, just try to do better each month. Take it one step at a time. Responsibility for one aspect of your life makes it easier for other areas, for instance, if you are not taking care of your money, then chances are you are suffering in other areas such as your relationships and/or career.
7. Be a Paradox:
Philippians 4:12 provides a good description of what I mean here. Like Paul, push you, know your limits just so you may surpass them. Avoid comparisons with anyone but yourself. You’re not in a race though it seems like it. The only person you should strive to be better than is yourself. I know Chibudike has it all together, I know Yimika is getting married soon. They are not you. Be the best you that you can be. Be proud of yourself. Celebrate your little conquests if no one will. Learn contentment. One of my best-est verses of scripture 1Timothy 6:6 says, ’Godliness with contentment is great gain’. This is undoubtedly true. Be content and yet not complacent. Get out of your comfort zone.
Father loves you just as you are. He loves you too much to leave you as you are. He calls you to so much more. Come. Click To Tweet You won’t be young forever. Make the most out of your youth. Make new friends and don’t forget the old ones. Know your Father. Make the world better than you met it. Dance. Cry. Love. Hurt. Live.
If you have more tips on how to be an adult, kindly let me know in the comment section.