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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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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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