Trick Yourself into Feeling like a Real Adult
Your early twenties are a very strange time. I'm sure you were already thinking it, but whether you're finishing school or starting your career, the transition into adulthood can be a little rough, to say the least. If you're anything like me, you've probably found that these years consist of being constantly on the go and juggling a million responsibilities (and your social life), all while being perpetually confused about what you're even doing with your life and why you are so tired all the time. The adultier adults you know (around 35+) are constantly congratulating you, telling you how proud they are of all your accomplishments, and how much they've seen you grow in the recent past. In response you politely say "thank you," but internally, you're freaking out because you actually have no idea what is going on and giving yourself enough credit seems virtually impossible. You constantly wonder when exactly you're going to start to feel like a real adult and not just like a thirteen year old girl wearing her Mom's high heels. If you can relate to any of this, then you've come to the right place, because it's time to break life down a bit, and start with baby steps. To help you out a bit, the Social Style team has put together a short list of small changes to make in your daily routine to trick yourself into feeling like a real adult. Fake it till you make it, am I right?
"If there's one thing I learned, it's that small changes make a huge difference."
Wake up a little earlier. It might sound terrible, but I'm not talking about waking up at 5 am to go for a run, make a full breakfast, and still make it to work on time. Even just a few minutes can make a world of difference. Within the first few moments you're awake, set the tone for your entire day. If you spend your morning being flustered, rushing around your bedroom trying to find clothes to piece together a somewhat presentable outfit before running out the door, you'll feel flustered for the rest of the day. There's something to be said about having a peaceful morning. Give yourself enough time to do everything you like to do to get ready for the day ahead. If you like to floss your teeth, curl your hair, or have a cup of coffee but typically do not have the time, make the time. I guarantee this will put you in a better mindset resulting in having an exponentially better day. (Extra credit: pick your outfit the night before to ease some of that morning stress)!
Pack your purse and bags wisely. Not all real adults carry purses, however I believe that real adults are always prepared for whatever the day may throw at them. Make sure you have all of your necessities on hand. Whether you carry a big Mary Poppins purse, a trendy little backpack, or simply keep your things in your car, be certain that you have everything you need, even those "just in case" items. While these may vary from day to day or from season to season, take an extra minute to think about what might come in handy before you leave home. Hot summer day? Pack extra chapstick or a cute pair of sunglasses. Know you'll be away from your house for a while? Pack that phone charger. Feeling emotional and predicting a mid-day meltdown? A travel pack of Kleenex and some mascara and you'll be good to go (those sunglasses might come in handy here too).
Plan a Little
Use your planner. Don't just buy that cute planner from Target on January 1st, fill it out, and then forget about it. Actively use it on a daily basis. Figure out a system that works for you and make it a point to write down all of your tasks ahead of time. Pick a day of the week or a day every month where you sit down and spend some quality time with your planner. Not only will this help you stay organized, it'll also help you visualize your responsibilities, providing you with a new perspective on the coming week or month, allowing you to manage your time more wisely. Cross off your tasks as you complete them for an added sense of accomplishment. There's no better feeling than having everything checked off with time to spare for happy hour with the gals.
Again, fake it 'til you make it. Even if you're feeling like that little thirteen year old girl drowning in a sea of adulthood, remember: dress the part, act the part, and keep your chin up. This is the time to be selfish and make allllll the mistakes. No one will be able to tell the difference, especially because they're probs in the same spot, anyway (something that nobody tells you). Give yourself a pep talk. Remind yourself that you are, in fact, an adult and you're doing the damn thing!
Images by Emina Omeragic Photography