There comes a time in every aspiring young professional’s life when s/he realizes that it may be time to trade in the Frappuccinos and the oversized “You Can’t Sit With Us #quirky” Brandy Melville t-shirts for their more serious counterparts, like espressos and well-ironed chambray shirts.
It’s a dark time. But it’s also a necessary milestone in the Growing Up process. Right after the “boxed wine is great!” stage and a few steps before the “I should Google what a mortgage is” stage.
Of course, getting to the point where people take you seriously is a lengthy process, and is not a place I have quite arrived at yet (a truth best deduced from the fact that my barista asks me if I’m sure I don’t want milk and sugar in my coffee).
But that’s ok.
As the wise prophet Oprah probably never said, Fake It Till You Make It. So, although I might not be in the best position to advise people on how to be successful, I have perfected the art of observation and have come up with a few key steps you will need to prove to (or at least fool) people that you have your shit together.
1. Eliminate the words “like, I can’t even” from your vocabulary.
Because yes, you can.
2. Own a briefcase and/or pantsuit.
If it works for Hillary, it will work for you. Also, have you ever seen a high-powered professional toting around an Urban Outfitters cloth backpack? I rest my (brief)case.
3. Get LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is to the 2010s what weed was to the 1960s: it connects people, forms unlikely alliances, and everyone’s on it.
4. Begin spelling like a human again.
Come on. I know you have it in you to muster the strength to type out “y-o” in front of the “u” on your texts. Additionally, it’s “great”, not “gr8″, and the last time anyone used “c u l8r” unironically was on AIM circa 2005.
5. Say goodbye to your diet of ramen and EasyMac.
In what is perhaps the hardest part of growing up, you will need to learn to embrace healthy, adult foods. You will recognize these “foods” because they are akin to those typically enjoyed by rabbits or Gwyneth Paltrow and can often be found emblazoned on the front of American Apparel sweatshirts. Foreign substances such as “kale” or “quinoa”.