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6 Signs You’ve Become an Adult Without Realizing It

6 Signs You’ve Become an Adult Without Realizing It

As kids, we tend to think that we simply “become adults,” as if someone waves a magic wand one day and imparts us with all the knowledge needed to run the world. As we get older, we start to realize this doesn’t happen overnight. Adults are created over time by knowledge, wisdom, and experience. The transition from teenage young adult to full-fledged grown-up happens so gradually that a lot of us don’t realize it’s happened until we catch ourselves looking forward to a trip to Bed, Bath, and Beyond. At that point, you’ll look back and be able to pinpoint everything else about your life that makes you as “adult-ish” as you can possibly be, such as:

1. You save money for different reasons

As a teen, money existed just so you could buy new things and go new places. As a young adult, though you had a few bills to pay, they were an afterthought; money was still primarily used to have a good time. As an adult, you realize your money is never really yours, as it goes straight from your paycheck to your monthly bills. And the money you do keep gets stashed away for long-term savings. While you used to think nothing of spending $50 on a video game, you now see that $50 bill as money that could be put toward your wedding venue or to pay off a credit card. As an adult, you’ll realize you’re making more money than you ever did before…but you somehow still have less of it.

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2. You actually need to exercise

When you were younger, going to the gym was no big deal. You went to bulk up, improve your mile time, or play basketball with your friends. But if you skipped a day or two, it wouldn’t make a difference. As an adult, you’re not so much worried about bulking up or improving your mile time as you are actually being able to lift the weight or finish the mile in the first place. It’s no longer about getting “better”; it’s about maintaining. And if you miss a day, you know you’ll be paying for it for about a week. Just like your money, your health is no longer an afterthought.

3. You don’t live for crazy weekends anymore

I bet you can remember the times in your 20s when you passed on going out with your friends. You were always so afraid you’d miss something awesome, so you’d force yourself to get dressed, shell out $50+ on cover charges and alcohol, only to realize the night was a repeat of the weekend before (and the one before that, and the one before that…). As an adult, you really don’t care if you “miss out” on some huge party – because you know you’re not really missing out. You have other things to do with your life, and going out until two in the morning will only take away from these other, more important, events.

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4. You don’t care what’s “cool”

Remember as a kid when you used to make fun of older people who weren’t “with it”? Now, you’re one of those people! But that’s not a bad thing. It means you’ve stopped caring about what other people think about you, and are now focusing on what you want to do in life. You’ve stopped trying to fit in with a crowd that you weren’t meant to be in; you don’t even have time to worry about fitting in anymore. By focusing on your own life, you’ve fell in with other like-minded individuals, and enjoy not only their company, but the person you are when you’re around them.

5. You actually enjoy wholesome activities

If you told the 21-year-old me that in nine years I’d be looking forward to going to craft fairs with my wife, I would have thought you were nuts. As you get older, the weekends are no longer about who can drink the most and who can out-crazy who. The weekends become a time during which you can focus on who you are, and who you want to be, as a person. You realize there’s a lot of fun in exploring the local shops in your town that you always ignored growing up. You go to events not for the free drinks, but because you care about the actual event. And, perhaps best of all, you wake up feeling completely fine the next day.

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6. Your life didn’t turn out like you thought it would, but you’re okay with it

As I’ve alluded to, kids look at adults as if they have everything figured out, and are exactly where they want to be in life. Most adults know this is definitely not the case. Many, if not most, of our hopes and dreams never come true. But mature adults know there’s nothing wrong with that. As adults, we know we have the power to change our life if we really want to. It might take much more effort than we thought it would as kids, but the true freedom of adulthood is the ability to make something out of ourselves, and to show the world how much we’re worth.

Featured photo credit: Grown Ups / Maryam Hassan via farm2.staticflickr.com

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Matt Duczeminski

A passionate writer who shares lifestlye tips on Lifehack

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Last Updated on October 20, 2020

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future. Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

Bonus: Think Like a Rhino

More Tips for Procrastinators to Start Taking Action

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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