We Millennials take pride in becoming a full-fledged adult, also known as “adulting.” There are a variety of ways we do this, but it typically involves just following through with your word and not neglecting your responsibilities.
While the other generations may berate us for slowly sliding into adulthood, we relish in our ability to have fun while also making a living. We don’t believe in adhering to societal standards such as having 2.5 children by the time we’re 25. Because we know the secret to happiness isn’t following in our parents’ footsteps (who are often divorced and miserable), but rather finding the perfect combination of “adulting” and staying young.
You don’t have to conform to what older generations think making a living needs to look like, but here are seven ways you can “adult” better without bogging yourself down.
It’s not hard and can prevent unnecessary dental work in the future. Flossing cuts back on gum disease, which has been linked to heart disease and diabetes. Make a promise to yourself to floss every day for six months, and watch your oral health skyrocket.
2. Go to the Damn Doctor.
Your health is important, and preventative care is the best way to stay on top of things. Yes, healthcare is no guarantee this year, but going for a checkup can prevent unnecessary emergency room visits. A checkup now is cheaper than the emergency room later.
3. Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck.
Sit down, and create an Excel spreadsheet which outlines how much you make per paycheck, the amount you need to pay your bills and how much spending money you have leftover. There may not be a lot leftover, but figuring out your finances can save you thousands in overdraft fees over the years. Stop giving your money to banks such as Wells Fargo who made $1.8 billion in overdraft fees alone in 2016.
4. Buy a Plant and Keep it Alive.
Trust me. It’s rewarding as hell when you manage to keep a plant alive for a year. Once you manage not to kill something you’re responsible for, you might find having a pet (or having children) isn’t as daunting.
5. Stop Getting Shit-Faced Every Weekend.
This is probably the biggest part of successfully “adulting.” You do have to grow up eventually, and stop getting wasted with your friends. You don’t want to be that guy or girl searching for people to hang out with at the bar because your other friends have full-time jobs and spouse.
6. Start a 401K.
You could have thousands of dollars in your 401K if you started one two or more years ago, and this is the mark of a true adult. Investing in your future is the best thing you can do for yourself. No one wants to work until they’re on their deathbed, and Social Security most likely won’t be an option for Millennials. (Learn what a 401K is.)
7. Create a Plan to Pay Off your Student Loans and Credit Card Debt.
Whether you use the snowball method or another plan, it’s important to pay off your debt. Filing bankruptcy is not “adulting,” and your stress level will go down significantly once you see the numbers decrease on your bills.
You’re not failing at being a productive member of society if you don’t follow this advice, but give it a try and see just how well you can “adult.”