If you have been consuming any popular culture lately (which you know I love to do, baby!!!!) you will probably have absorbed one key piece of information: that being a grownup sucks. Kids get to enjoy lives of leisure, going to school where they don’t actually have any classes and get to make out with their absurdly hot, suspiciously mature-looking peers, while adults slave away, go to meetings, and shout things like, “I don’t have time for this!! I have BILLS to pay!!!!” into their phones.
And, to a certain extent, this is true. While adulthood does carry some cool benefits, an undeniable byproduct of adulthood is being gifted a packet of tiny grievances that you carry with you for the rest of your life. You know, like taxes. Laundry. Work. Knowing that you have to make your own doctor’s appointments. This stuff isn’t fun!
But just because some of the things you have to do when you’re growing up doesn’t, like, incite a party, this doesn’t mean that you should go into it kicking and screaming. In fact, adulthood is actually a lot easier if you approach it with a sense of maturity. And, yeah–maturity is one of those “easier said than done” sort of things, but if you practice it now, it can make things a lot easier down the road. So, check out these little things you can do to feel a little bit more like a grown-up. And don’t worry–they’re actually a lot easier than you probably think:
1. Make your own appointments:
Me having to make my own appointments pic.twitter.com/ipKQ5ggpAw
— ? Laura ? (@anaesthetits) January 11, 2017
I know. But, like, you can call the doctor. (Or, at the very least, you can find a doctor who uses an online system for making appointments.) I believe in you!
2. Know what’s going on with your insurance:
me, an adult: [schedules, goes to a dr appointment by myself]
dr: there's an issue w your insurance
me, a child: pic.twitter.com/PlfPvY8xYY
— Allie Schauer (@moonshoeschauer) March 13, 2017
This is harder than the first part–health insurance is notoriously tricky–but do your best. Find out which insurance provider you have, learn what your identification number is, and see if you can get a card to carry around with you. This will make doctor’s appointments and getting prescriptions much easier.
3. Learn how to do your taxes now:
You don’t have to do them all on your own, but instead of asking your parents to do all of your taxes for whatever afterschool job or internship you might have, ask them to walk through it with you and tell you what, exactly, a W-2 is.. This way, you’ll have a more solid foundation for when you actually have to do it yourself.
4. Do your own laundry:
You’ll have to do it in college (or when you just move out of the house). And, besides, it’s not actually as hard s you’re probably making it out to be in your head–separate whites and colors. Pre-treat stains. Use hot water for white clothes and colder water for colors. See? Easy. Plus, you get clena clothes out of it.
5. Treat your car well:
I mean, if you have a car, you don’t have to go out and get it detailed every month. Just don’t, like, make it a pigsty. (You don’t want your mom to have to send you an email like the one Yolanda Hadid sent to Bella Hadid, do you?)
6. And keep stuff you need in it:
7. Keep your important documents in order:
You know, like your birth certificate. Passport. Social security card. These are all things you won’t think about or need often, but when you do need them, you really need them–so, just make sure they’re in a safe place.
8. Own at least one umbrella:
You know the difference between adults and children? Adults own umbrellas so they don’t get caught in the rain. (I mean, there’s some other stuff, too. But mostly that.)
9. Know how to actually make plans with your friends.
making plans in the groupchat like pic.twitter.com/FqL79tt3Hh
— Relatable Quotes (@RelatableQuote) September 21, 2014
Like, no wishy-washy, drawn-out texting conversations with your friends (and anyone you’re dating or want to date) about where to get dinner, where to hang out, what movie to see. I know! It’s hard. But if you’ve ever been in one of these situations, you’ll know that it can be really, really annoying. Why shouldn’t you be the one to end it? You don’t need to be bullish about absolutely everything–people like to have their own opinions heard, too–but if you feel like a conversation is going on for too long, just make a decision. (Or, at the very least, prevent a smaller assortment of options.) Your friends will be happy.
10. Make your bed every morning.
Making your bed can actually make you more productive throughout the day! Plus, it just makes your room look better. Do it.
11. Pay attention to things in your life that make you feel good vs. the things that don’t make you feel good.
Part of being mature is knowing how to take care of yourself. This isn’t just with physical things–you know, eating well, working out, going to the doctor–but also with mental matters. Consider how certain things in your life make you feel–if you notice that a person or habit makes you feel sad, angry, or just vaguely bad, somehow, make an effort to change it.
12. Don’t be afraid to talk about tough stuff with your teachers.
Like, if you get a not-so-great grade in something and you’re not sure why, don’t mope but do nothing about it (and definitely don’t have your parents email them). Instead, go to your teacher and have a (respectful) conversation about what went wrong and what you can do about it. Dealing with your own problems is a huge sign of maturity, so chances are good that your teachers will be impressed by you.
13. If you’re applying to college, try to handle most of it on your own:
I mean, you don’t have to do everything on your own–if your parents are willing to help you with organization and offer to proofread your application before you send it in, you should definitely take them up on that–but you really need to do the essentials by yourself. Write your own essays. Try to fill out the forms yourself. Ask your teachers for letters of recommendation. It’s tempting to lean on your parents for extra support, especially if they’re offering it, but you’re going to be on your own in college. Practicing now will make it much easier when you’re there. (I knew someone in high school whose mom wrote his college essay. He got into the school and went there, which is, uh, pretty shameful. So. Don’t do that.)
14. Learn how to do things you’d usually do with friends on your own:
Ever wonder what a story penned down looks like? New blogpost coming up soon! Clothes by : @chowringeebazaar @saksheee_ Styled by: @the_nerd_with_a_vogue Hair and make up: @sanjana8794 @make_up_works #birdsongcafe#theworlthoughmyeyes#postcards#igers#portraits_universe#theportraitpr0ject#vscovisuals#lost#alonetime#love#reflection#life#portraits_ig.
One of the easiest ways to feel mature (which, in turn, means other people will perceive you as being more mature) is to learn how to be okay doing things on your own. Whether it’s shopping, seeing a movie, or doing work in a coffee shop, try to do something on your own and see how you feel.
You don’t have to–and shouldn’t!–do everything on your own, but it can be a good test every now and then to see how independent you are.
Are you trying to be more mature? Do you have any tips for doing so? Let us know in the comments!