Life is a chain of changes. As soon as we get used to some of them, new challenges appear. We constantly live in a state of hope for a better future. When we’re little kids, we want to go to school sooner. Then, we want to leave the parental house and enter a prestigious college. Finally, we want to graduate from college and, at last, become independent members of society.
Unfortunately, attending lectures and doing homework at college isn’t enough to become an adult. Various essays, lab reports, and research papers help us to improve our cognitive skills and logical reasoning, but they don’t help us to learn how to prepare food, pay taxes, get a job, or plan our budget.
Some students understand that college isn’t enough to get prepared for adult life. They take internship and extracurricular courses to make their CV look more attractive for potential employers. They frequently prefer to use a custom dissertation writing service and pay for papers that won’t make you any smarter, but instead just bored and tired. Yes, that’s cheating, but adult life requires being tricky sometimes.
I’ve made a list of things that everyone (or almost everyone) has to do as an adult. And none of these things are taught at college (traditionally). At the end of the article, I’ll also give you some advice on how to deal with these nightmares and not go insane. Good luck!
8 Things That Aren’t Taught at College (Unfortunately)
- Paying taxes
No article can be perfect without an appropriate quote. So, here it is: “Death, taxes, and childbirth! There’s never any convenient time for any of them.” The surprisingly witty phrase comes from the classic piece of American literature “Gone With the Wind.” This novel is more than 80 (!) years old, and it’s still relevant.
So, taxes. This terrifying phenomenon can take up to 50% of your salary. And that hurts. You can hire someone to deal with your taxes, but that’s not how fully grown adults solve their problems, right?
- Going shopping
Let’s make it clear: I’m not talking about looking for a matching pair of shoes. I’m talking about buying affordable and, at the same time, high-quality food products. You should know how to pick a good piece of raw meat or a ripe avocado. You have to find a supermarket with reasonable prices or trustworthy farmers if you decide to go veggie.
The sense of freedom is amazing. When you live separately, you may throw parties, walk around your apartment naked, and sing in the shower without being ashamed. However, “with great power comes great responsibility.” Citing Spider-man movies isn’t actually a grown-up move, sorry.
You don’t have to clean every day, but none of your friends would visit your house if you turn it into a barn. And, my friend, there are also some rules and techniques that you’ll have to learn. Of course, you can clean your entire apartment with one duster and some water, but the atmosphere of cleanliness won’t last long.
- Looking and applying for a job
Making money might seem kind of fun when you’re picturing yourself in a business suit talking about marketing campaigns, advertising strategies, and investments. But before being able to do that and having lunches with your colleagues, you’ll have to find your “dream job.” Or, at least, any job.
Composing your CV and resume, going to interviews, and stressing out about having zero work experience isn’t that fun. But we all have to do it.
- Planning your budget
And here the fun begins. You literally have no idea how much parental money you’ve been spending all this time. And how much money they spend to provide you with healthy food, a clean house, electricity, hot water, and proper education.
The question of where your money goes will become one of your favorites. You’ll have to deal with being blindsided by unexpected expenses such as electricity bills, insurance, rent, dry cleaning, furniture, and so on. As you’ve already realized, they aren’t paid for by magic elves, a.k.a. your parents, any more.
- Looking for an apartment
“It has to be cozy, and light, and big, and quiet, with modern furniture and a comfy bed, and cost no more than 25% of my salary…” Wow! Hold your horses! If you’re a junior with zero experience, your requirements and dreams should be more reserved so that you won’t get the feeling of massive disappointment when you start looking for your new apartment.
And one more thing: if you don’t feel economically stable now, you might want to think about getting a roommate. And that’s a whole new story.
- Resolving conflicts
You’re an adult – you can’t call your parents every time you have some troubles with shop-assistants, roommates, colleagues, and other members of society. If you got used to fighting with your parents when you were a rebellious teenager, then you’re lucky (in some way). But if you have understanding and caring parents and went to a good private school, then you have no chance to stand against our cruel world without training.
Conflict resolution is a science, and you’ll have to practice a lot to make sure that you’re able to defend your point of view and interests. Luckily, you can find many books about conflict resolution and manipulating other people. Reading them will be a reasonable and logical first step.
- Being in a relationship
All you need is love. But being in love and living with your beloved are totally different things. Whether it’s an official marriage or not, cohabitation is something that you also have to learn.
There are no two 100% compatible personalities. All of us have individual strengths and weaknesses, fears and dreams, habits and rituals. It’s difficult to understand and accept another person the way he or she is and, at the same time, teach him or her how to understand you.
Unfortunately, there is no universal rule or book that will help you with this problem. The only thing you can do is be patient and never forget about the value of true love.
How do you feel? If you think that you don’t need to go to college because you won’t learn anything useful there, then stop. The college experience is a great period of life, and you can learn a lot from being a student. You’ll learn how to communicate with different people, how to work in a group, and how to gather and memorize information. Those skills are important too.
Anyway, I don’t want to make you insecure about your adult life. Let me share a few recommendations about how to deal with all this adult stuff.
How to Deal With Adult Life: 5 Tips
- Listen to your parents
Unexpected, right? Sometimes, our parents suppress our impulses and dreams because they care about us and don’t want us to get hurt. That’s why the conflicts are frequently inevitable. But when it comes to life experience, you can’t compete with them. Ask your parents about paying taxes, shopping, cleaning, looking for a job, and relationships. They’ll gladly share their knowledge and keep you from making mistakes.
- Read instructions and contracts
And read them carefully! Instructions will help you to avoid many stupid mistakes, like putting foil in your microwave. And if you read contracts thoroughly, you’ll be more protected and prepared when it comes to a juridical conflict of interests.
- Listen to other people
You’re the most important person on the planet – in your world. But you don’t have the same role in other people’s lives. And you can’t become a good friend or lover if you don’t listen to the people around you. Be patient and attentive when people talk about their problems, and they will like you.
- Be a bit egoistic
On the other hand, your life belongs only to you. Of course, you shouldn’t hurt other people. But when you have to choose between your personal happiness and the happiness of another person, choose yourself. You won’t have another chance to live your life the way you want. You have only one attempt so don’t try to please someone if it doesn’t make you happy.
Hiding from the world might seem attractive, especially for people who aren’t used to social interactions. But you can’t be Robinson Crusoe and succeed in the modern world. Networking gives you many opportunities, as you can get what you want quicker and easier. Each new friend means hundreds of new contacts. So, go outside and meet new people!
These five tips will definitely make your life easier, fuller, and more exciting. I also want to give you the final recommendation. It’s not actually a tip, but more like a golden rule. Never regret your actions. You should understand that we make the best choices under specific circumstances in a specific state of mind.
We live once, and we have every right to make mistakes.
This content is sponsored by Matthew Williams.