Do we all hate adulting? The stress of bills, loans and of course, the mighty weight of responsibility.
When does someone become an adult? Physically, it is probably when our body has ripened to the age of 21. Mentally, that is disputable...
I consider the time someone gets a full-time job as the beginning of adulthood. Therefore as of July 2021, I have “adulted” for a year. Here are my most beloved five things from this continuous experience.
1. Financial Freedom
Monies. Monies. Monies! Why else would we set alarms, sacrifice our cherished weekdays, and the bulk of our lifetime? Many times, money is our translator to comfort, wonderful experiences and an enjoyable life.
Every time I stroll the aisles of Little Farms, Scoops, Fairprice and Cold Storage, I gleefully envision an upcoming sublime granola time with my favorite brand of Oat Milk. Would I feel as overjoyed if I had to ask someone else for permission? What about the guilt if they bought them for me? Would I feel as thrilled if I knew I had to make do with a granola I dislike, just because of cost?
Beyond this, money can be quite paramount to self realisation. Or rather, it assists in helping you make sense of yourself. Have you ever gone shopping and thought, “This is so me!!!”. And after you purchase it, that speaks you?
Building this website to my style and interests fulfils my heart, makes me discover what I like, and maybe who I am. And a domain is something my student pocket money would never have permitted. Isn't it nice to have your pocket change?
2. Mental Maturity
As we work, we meet and socialise with many new humans who come from different backgrounds. You start viewing the world from different vantage points, and how different the scenery is. You remember these new landscapes, and sometimes you start to forget the flaws of your own. I’ve always been quite a melancholic one, always ruminating on the faults of “life”, and feeling sorry for myself. Now I realise how minuscule everything had been, when cast against the backdrop of our big, big majestic world.
I also learnt responsibility through one of the most comical experiences. It was a fine day like any other, until I received a horrifying message from Starhub that my line was to be…. suspended!
As I desperately opened the Starhub mobile app with quivering fingers, I was shocked. Turns out I had not paid my bills for a laughable six months. I called 1633, and could not speak due to how hilariously ashamed I was of myself...
And now I remember, there are deadlines to meet, things you have to routinely take care of, for life to run smoothly.
3. Confidence and Self Actualisation
If you are a natural introvert marked by a perennial shyness, working will definitely wash away some of that. Prior to working, eye contact was something I could never hold past a few seconds before crumbling back weakly into my comfort zone.
But in a client-facing role, speaking was something I had to do (how else to buy blueberries and pumpkin seeds?). And like everything else, articulation is a skill that can be honed and practised. By the ticking hands of unending clocks, I grew comfortable and confident to speak.
But how does working help with self actualisation?
Personally, working with humans and managing relationships roused some sleeping parts of me I never realised. For example, I never knew I had any potential in sales, marketing or copywriting at all. As you wander through the garden of your career, you’re bound to stumble upon some seedlings within your character that you had never known. Working on these water them, and under the warm sunshine of a positive mindset, there will start to appear your sweet flowers and fruits! ♡
The value and meaning of time change tremendously when you start committing nine hours away to five days of your week. Difficulty starts to develop - when you want to meet your friends, visit your grandparents, go to the gym etc while still maintaining a healthy sleep schedule.
As such, weekends and free time suddenly transform into something so preciously scant. I appreciate meals with my family, nights alone, so much more.
Beyond time, the appreciation for my parents has also grown significantly because... now I know the dolla ain’t easy to earn! ︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿ヽ(゜□゜ )ノ︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿︵‿
5. Network and New Relationships
Through work, I’ve met some of the funniest and nurturing colleagues and clients. As quite a loner, these connections mean much to me. I feel less alone and neurotic, and the appearance of someone who you click with is always a gem!
Adulthood isn’t always pleasant: it becomes harder to make new friends, stay connected with people, and the chance of encountering a*holes peaks high at the workplace. Perhaps I haven’t experienced the wrath of adulthood in its full force either (eg. no kids, no house, no debts), but sometimes I catch myself hating life and wishing I were a child. Especially so when work gets tough, and you're finding that last shred of positivity to breathe.
Aren’t these wonderful and motivating reminders that growing older doesn’t suck - it can in fact be incredible and liberating?
Thank You for reading,