Urban Dictionary defines the term “adulting” as “to carry out one or more duties and responsibilities expected of fully-developed individuals.” But we all know what adulting really is, in all its ugly glory. It’s attempting (sometimes failing) to live on your own, supporting yourself financially, and eating with a broken, angry hunger because you can’t find that one fork that you stole from your parents’ house.
But really, with all the memes and jokes around the internet that make fun of people who are starting their own lives, it’s easy to feel like being an adult is like trying to float on boiling hot water, with a bunch of stones tied to your feet, all while attempting to take an Instagram story of it. And the thing is, it actually kind of is. There’s a lot of work that comes with being a real adult, and none of it includes using paper plates for the rest of your life because you don’t want to do your own dishes. You need to do the real stuff–stuff that would actually help you pave your way towards being a real adult.
Finalize your resume
Having a resume is one of the most important things that you need before you even graduate. It’s the first thing that potential employers will ask from you, so make sure that you have it ready and that it’s up-to-date. Put all your relevant experiences, but make it concise. You wouldn’t want to bore your future boss with your achievements from grade school, right?
Open a savings account
Ah, yes–the very adult thing of actually owning a bank account that you opened with your own money. Having your own savings account isn’t just to prove that you’re a financially responsible adult. It’s also for you to keep some of your income safe, and not just spend it all on things you don’t really need.
Get government IDs
Getting government IDs may be a long, tiring, and often annoying process, but it’s a must. Your employers will ask for valid identification and your school ID won’t really work anymore once you graduate. Pro-tip: if you don’t want to try driving, get that Unified Multi Purpose Card (UMID ID) from SSS. The postal office ID is also something easy to apply for.
Set short- and long-term goals
Setting goals for yourself may seem boring, but it can actually help you focus on what you want to achieve in life. If you’re job hunting, setting a goal of finding a stable job within six months is a good short-term goal that will help you be more proactive in applying for jobs.
Learn about taxes and insurance
Since the recent implementation of TRAIN, taxes for most people have gone up, so you have to understand the law to know how much you’re actually getting from your salary. Take some time to study about taxes. Consider getting an insurance, especially if you’re accident-prone, but also if you want to save money in the long run.
Learn how to cook (for real, okay)
Let’s be real here. You can’t really live off fast food and junk forever, or rely on your parents and roommates for food. Cooking is a life skill. It’s something that you have to learn whether you like it or not. Start small and work your way towards complicated dishes and it might surprise you how fun cooking actually is.
Find the best place to live
Get the real starting-to-adult experience when you move out of your parents’ house. For some, moving out is a choice they want to make, for others, it’s something they’re forced to do because they want to live closer to work. Whatever it is, find a place that fits your budget and your priorities. Try to talk to your potential neighbors to know the area better.
Try learning new skills
As always, learning is a never ending process. Even if you’ve already gotten your college diploma, there’s still a lot of stuff that you can learn. Try learning a new language or take a crash course on financial literacy. Maybe it would even beef up your resume more.
By Bea Amador
Art by Isabel Drilon