Ever feel like you’re less mature than you were in high school? Does it baffle you that you once participated in student council politics, sports teams, and after school clubs on top of 8 hours of class with no impulse desired to nap? I’ve compiled a few steps you can take if you’re trying to convince your parents, peers or even yourself that you’re getting into the swing of “adulting”. After all, university is the ultimate limbo between being young, dumb and broke, and curating an unreal LinkedIn to attract employers.
Dress the part
Giving the impression you have your act together starts with how others see you, literally. Curating a polished, mature wardrobe doesn’t have to be expensive. Pay particular attention to wearing clean, sleek clothes that fit the season. When in doubt, pair a fresh black or white shirt with fitted jeans, then accessorize for the season.
Take up a hobby
This one is a lot easier than it sounds. You don’t have to pretend to be interested in politics or complex literature to give the appearance of being mature. Reflect on what you already love: sports, art, movies, anything. There are mature ways of indulging in and discussing things that already interest you. If you play your cards right, you can create an image or yourself as a bright, well-rounded young adult just by finding an insightful way to discuss your passions.
Learn to cook
…or at least give people the impression you know how to. You show up to lecture with a trendy looking packed lunch, and you instantly radiate “I know what I’m doing” energy. A colourful salad in a mason jar will do just fine. Additionally, cooking is much less expensive than routinely raiding the ARC for sustenance.
Develop a consistent workout plan that works for you. One major advantage of university life is the accessibility to so many ways to get some exercise, although that comes behind endless distractions. The harder part is establishing the routine. Once you find the times in your schedule you can afford to set aside an hour here or there, you’re set. Sign up for an intramural before you talk yourself out of it, or take your friend up on the invitation to join them at yoga. You don’t have to go to the gym everyday with the keeners, or even go every other day for that matter. Getting just a couple of hours of light exercise a week can help you feel more focused and energized. And personally, when I see someone walking around with a yoga mat, I immediately assume they have their life together.
Don’t sweat it
There’s a lot of pressure at this time in our lives to grow up, and map out what you want to do with the rest of your life. These tips are meant to make you feel more confident and organized – not overwhelmed by the idea of adulthood. The key is to not compare yourself too harshly to those around you. If you’re feeling overcome with the seemingly impending doom of adulthood, remember you can always buy an impossibly large poutine and watch sitcoms until four in the morning, just because you can.
Charlotte Mingay is a guest contributor to MUSE. Want to submit? Click here.