5 Small Ways to Be a Better Adult This Week

Adulting tips beyond the standard "fake it till you make it" approach.
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Adulting tips beyond the standard "fake it till you make it" approach.

Maybe it's because I'm becoming more aware of my age (I'm a 63-year-old grandmother in a 21-year-old's body), but lately, I've been trying to figure out how to be a better adult. Perhaps this was brought on by knowing that I live in a big-girl apartment and I need to get my life together, but either way, I've been doing my best to improve my adulting skills in a way that other adults will recognize and respect.

(Spoiler alert: it's a lot weirder, harder and more boring than I want to admit.)

Even though I'm not an expert (really, who is?), here are five small adulting tips to help you get your life together.

1. Just because you can do it, doesn't mean you should.

This may be vague, but intentionally so: once you become an adult, you are the boss of yourself. You can do whatever you want, whenever you want. That being said, it's extremely easy to abuse that caveat.

For instance, even if you have the day off, maybe you shouldn't spend all day in bed or start partying at noon. Though both examples are fun and sometimes warranted, you can't sustain a lifestyle based on those behaviors alone. 

My advice for this: have a plan for every day. You don't have to get super detailed, but at least give yourself a slight sense of structure to follow.

2. Get yourself on a cleaning schedule (even for the littlest of things).

One of the biggest challenges of living alone? Having no one to blame but yourself if something isn't clean or done. After yet another day of finding dishes in the sink and having to clean up before I could even make breakfast, I had to force myself to make a cleaning schedule.

Maybe you're a master at doing your dishes but not your laundry. Or maybe your bathroom is your worst cleaning nightmare. Whether you make a weekly cleaning schedule or a daily one, it's a good idea to keep yourself accountable. A clean home is a great start to trying to be an adult, especially since it lets you focus on other (more important) things.

3. Find a new way to learn something every day.

From books to movies to just random scrolling online, there is a bulk of information out there to discover. And whether you use new-found information as conversation starters or as a way of becoming more mindful of the world (or for plain entertainment), well, that's up to you.

My favorite thing to do now is listening to podcasts. (My current favorite is And That's Why We Drink, though I follow several lifestyle podcasts as well.) It's a no stress way to learning new facts and I can listen to it while I clean or cook or just about anything!

For more podcast recommendations, see the 3 best podcasts for millennial women and our 6 favorite female-led podcasts.

4. Learn one new recipe.

Even if it's just a new way to cook your eggs (I don't want to admit how long it took me to figure out how to poach an egg), learning one new recipe every week/month is a great way to broaden your dining horizons. Plus, your schedule and needs can totally dictate what kind of recipes you learn.

For example, Mondays are my busy days, so I've learned more than a few recipes that I can toss into my crockpot in the morning and can nom on when I get home at night. Maybe you want to learn how to cook meals to wow your friends or dates. Maybe you want to find new ways to make quick meals. You can only benefit from learning new recipes!

5. When all else fails, get an expert's advice.

From self-help books to lifestyle blogs, there is always advice out there for the newly adulting millennial / Gen Z-er. Last year, I got several books on adulting and I'm not ashamed to admit that I regularly read them still. (A good book to start with is "Adulting: How to Become a Grown-Up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps." She covers anything and everything you can possibly think of.)

Whether you're just starting your journey to adulthood or you've been in the game for a while and still wonder what you're doing, I hope this helped you get a great start this week.

What do you think?

What are your adulting hacks? What's one thing you wish you knew before you became an adult? How can CF help you this week? Let us know in the comments!

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