14 Skills to learn to Qualify as an ‘Adult’

Photo by James Obernesser on Unsplash

Do you consider yourself an adult? If your age is 18+ you can qualify as an ‘Adult’ right? Wrong, you can’t be classed as an adult just because you are old enough. To qualify as an adult, you must know these basic life skills to be able to stand on your own two feet, without holding someone’s hand. With that said, I mean you need to independently function in the society and accept the consequences of your actions.

Yayyy, I am an adult and now I can go to clubs, get my hair colored, get tattoos, piercing and buy whatever I like. Isn’t it the day that we all had been waiting all our life for?

I understand that you can do all the fun things as an adult but what about maturity, ownership and responsibilities? Welcome to the grown ups world and learn these life skills to be an adult. Get yourself ready for earning, paying bills, having own place, finding a partner, doing house chores…….never ending list.

Skills to learn to be an Adult

Becoming adults mean that we are prepared for any unexpected thing life might throw at us like this global pandemic. Moreover, we won’t have our siblings or parents to handle our finances, house chores or relationship issues. In short, manage your life on your own in all possible situations. I have listed 14 skills which every adult should learn as early as possible.

1. Housekeeping

Making bed, organizing wardrobe, watering plants, decluttering & cleaning house, washing dishes and laundry basics are some skills you should know to keep your home tidy, germ free and healthy. You don’t have to be an expert on the first day, but do it daily and you will become one soon. Housekeeping Checked. 🙂

2. Cooking

learn cooking to be an adult
Photo by Kevin McCutcheon on Unsplash

Cooking a meal from scratch is one of the most essential skills to know to qualify as an adult. It’s not just a life-saving skill but also makes you self-dependant. If you order food more than once in a week then this skill is critical for you. You will realize its importance while living on your own. So go to the kitchen and make something on your own, there are plenty of videos on youtube to help.

#Tip: Men who cook are more attractive to women than men who don’t so guys buckel up.

3. Handyman Skills

I know people who don’t even know how to use some of their home and kitchen appliances. To ease off your daily chores, you should know the complete functionality and settings of your home appliances. To be an adult you should know the skills like basic repairing of your electronics. FYI, I have repaired some difficult appliances like fridge, cooler and toaster.

4. Driving Skills

I remember that I was keenly waiting for my 18th birthday to apply for driving classes. I wanted to be independent and drive my father’s car on my own to hang out with friends. Having said that, my best friend still doesn’t know how to drive. Everytime she has to go out, or drop her kids to school or take her parents to hospital, she has to ask for favour from others. Therefore, you must learn driving skills to be an adult in a true sense.

5. Create a Budget

The day you start making money, first thing is to make a budget for yourself so you are in control of your financial decisions. Most common budget system for beginners is 50/30/20 Rule. Divide your total monthly income(after taxes) into 3 categories- 50% for basic necessities, 30% for Non-essentials (Lifestyle Expenses) and 20% for Savings. There are several folks I know who are saving 70% of their total income, but it completely depends on your income and the lifestyle. Certainly, you can change it according to your core expenses but savings better be 20% or more.

6. Access Online Banking

Online banking can save you a lot of time and efforts compared to physically visiting the bank. Even if you aren’t technology friendly, you must master online banking skills as an adult for regular payments and transfers. Having banking app on your phone with a secured password can simplify your everyday life. I love using my mobile banking app for all my transactions.

7. Tax Savings

Act smart and look for tax saving investment, which not only provides the benefit of tax exemption but also helps to earn tax-free income. These tax-saving investments plans are created to get benefit from the sections of the Income Tax Act (of your country). As per the act, all investments made by investors are eligible for tax exemption up to a given maximum limit. Consult a professional or seek help from friends to learn about tax savings.

learn tax savings to be an adult

8. Organize Financial Records

As an adult, you should maintain a password protected excel sheet that has all of your bank accounts details (like account number, balance, username, password etc), property, stocks/equity, insurance policies, investment schemes details and all your assets. Of course, you can’t store your confidential information on your phone or diary. Therefore, this excel sheet is your life saviour which you can access anytime while auditing your finances. My piece of advice is that you share it with your partner as it may help you in case of emergency or if god forbidden something happens to one person.

9. Investment

In order to be an adult, you must learn some basic investment techniques. If you don’t invest your money then you are losing its value due to inflation rate and currency valuation over time. Investment is very important to grow your money and make profitable income. Take control of your investments and don’t be dependent on your father or siblings to do it for you, welcome to adulthood.!

If you think that you do not have enough money to invest then you must read my post about How to Save More Money in 2020.

10. Time Management

Mastering this skill will improve your life 10 times more and faster. Create a timetable with all your daily tasks (including house chores, personal and work related tasks ) with a deadline. This way you can do plenty of things in a day which usually seems impossible. If you are a WFM junkie then you should consider reading Is your ‘work from home’ routine Good enough? to learn time management skill.

11. How to Focus

The biggest challenge in today’s digital age is paying attention to one thing at a time. Since our attention span is getting shortened with time thanks to instagram and Tik-Tok, we are bound to lose our focus. Some brain games and brain exercises with meditation and mindfulness can boost your short attention span and improve focus.

A funny but Inspirational Story

learn swimming to be an adult

Learning anything is difficult for everyone initially and so was for me. The most difficult skill I have ever challenged myself to learn was swimming ( due to my hydrophobia). I can’t tell you how many times I had cried standing in the pool (while learning swimming) in front of many people. Oops I missed something, I was not a kid at that time and it was only few years back (that’s why it was a big deal). Now you are thinking why haven’t I learned swimming as a kid? I used to think what’s the point of learning swimming when we don’t live underwater 😛 Also, there is no sea in Delhi (my hometown) so going to the beach and swim wasn’t a thing for us growing up.

First Attempt

Since I moved to Dubai, I started going to the beach to chill but without getting into the water. One day, I decided to overcome my fear and learn swimming. I had no idea it would be that challenging. After completing my first swimming course, I still couldn’t swim in the pool. I told myself it’s ok, like some birds can’t fly so maybe I am the penguin of humans who can’t swim, you got the analogy?

Second Attempt

Next summer, it hit me again and I booked another 1 month course for swimming. I tried very hard this time and completed all the classes again and guess what? I still couldn’t swim. It was so frustrating and I convinced myself that I didn’t even need to learn swimming. Moreover, I thought aquatic animals don’t try to learn how to walk or fly then why do humans learn swimming?

Third Attempt

Next month, I watched an inspirational movie about a sportsman who participated in the running finale with a wounded leg and won. I was like, ‘I am not gonna give up until I swim in the sea’. Therefore, I practiced and practiced and practiced and finally I could swim.

12. Build Meaningful relationship

have meaningful relationships to be an adult

Most of you might not feel the need to learn something as basic as nurturing and strengthening relationships. But, I feel building strong and meaningful relationships is one of the most important skills of #adulting. I always cherish and value my loved ones. My friends, family and partner are my support system and vice versa. To learn more, you can refer to my post about the secrets for a happy and successful relationship.

13. Take Compliments &/or Criticism

Most of us (including me) are not good with receiving compliments/criticism. Instead of handling it gracefully, we get embarrassed or feel awkward when someone compliments/criticizes us. Simply say’ Thank you’, that’s very nice of you for saying that’, ‘you’re so generous’, ‘so sweet of you’ with a smile. If someone shares a constructive criticism (if they’re valid) say ‘ I will try to work on that’, I will think about it’, ‘thank you for your genuine feedback’ otherwise ignore and forget about it. As an adult it’s imperative to groom yourself basis the criticism and compliments.

14. Set Up Goals

I have been setting goals since I received my first ever paycheck. Initially, I had mostly materialistic goals from buying gadgets like my first cell phone, camera, guitar to my first trip and a piece of land. Later, my goals expanded to my fitness, travel, health, career, relationship and personal finance, to cover all areas of my life. Furthermore, you should have realistic goals with the road map ( actionable tasks) to achieve your desired result bounded with a deadline.

While the world is under lockdown due to COVID-19, you can literally Transform Your Life from home with these basic life skills.

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