Your 20somethings is a constant struggle between being considered an adult and still feeling (and acting) like a kid. While you might not have it all figured out (and don’t have to), here are some steps to weaning yourself off your parents and becoming independent.
1. Get a Job
This pretty much goes without saying, but a job is the first step in becoming completely independent. Even if you’re still in college, doesn’t mean you should postpone working. In fact, the more work experience you have while you’re in college, the easier it will be to get a job once you graduate.
2. Pay your own cell phone bill
If you can afford to pay rent, you should be paying your own cell phone bill. While it’s nice to have your parents take care of it, it’s a step towards becoming independent. Also, if your family is anything like mine, you can save yourself from the arguments about upgrades and data usage.
3. Make your own medical appointments
By now, your parents should not be making your doctor’s appointments. Have your doctor’s phone number in your contacts and keep track of when you’re due for your next checkup. If you can book a dinner reservation, you can book your dentist appointment.
4. File your taxes
Here’s something they don’t teach you in college. It’s okay because you don’t have to actually file them yourself. You can go to any H&R Block and they will help you out. Please don’t leave this up to your parents though. Filing your taxes is something you will have to do for the rest of your life, so pay attention.
5. Make your own decisions
It’s your life, so live it the way you want. Important decisions, like your career path, and not so important decisions, like what you order on seamless, are within your control. While seeking advice is nothing to be ashamed about, you don’t have to ask permission or consult your parents on every decision you make.
6. Travel as much as you can
You won’t really know who you are until you experience traveling. It forces you to get out of your comfort zone and figure things out on your own. There’s nothing like navigating a foreign city by yourself. When you come back you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment that you’ve never felt before.
7. Take care of your body
While your twenties is a time to live it up, it’s also a time to realize your body can only party so hard before it catches up with you. Most of us have good friends who will hold your hair back while you puke and great parents who will bring you chicken noodle soup when you’re sick. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take your vitamins, exercise, eat right and keep yourself in check.