After having someone watch over you, take care of you, and guide you through adolescence, it can be hard to learn how to take care of yourself as an adult. You are left to make your own decisions, figure out all your own issues, get your work done, and stay healthy on top of that. It certainly is a lot to handle.
As we become adults, we are given more responsibilities and things to worry about. Now, you have to work, cook, pay your bills, stay on top of paperwork, and many other things on top of going to school and maintaining a social life. Even if we are slowly given these responsibilities, it can easily throw off the balance of your lifestyle. This is usually when some aspects of your life get set on the back-burner and aren’t given as much attention.
I found that, when I first moved away from home for University, I gave most of my energy to only a few aspects of my life. For instance, I became so consumed by my school work and job that I didn’t focus on having fun or eating healthy. My work, both educational and occupational, seemed to be so important and daunting that I let my social life and health suffer. While I didn’t realise it at the time, it definitely hurt me in the long run.
However, it is expected that certain aspects of your life may be given less attention during periods of transition. It takes time to get used to new things, especially when it is changing your lifestyle. It took me the entirety of my first year of University to learn how to balance work and my social life, but now I am more confident in my abilities to deal with working and going to University full-time. This allows me to give a bit more attention to different areas of my life in second year. Now, I am focusing on taking more time to compile healthy, delicious meals instead of eating fast food frequently. Also, I’m spending more time with friends without fretting over the homework that I have left to do. Slowly, everything gets easier to balance.
Holding yourself accountable
Alongside balancing everything, It can be hard to hold yourself accountable and make sure you are doing what is best for you. When you’re younger, parental figures are usually always there to make sure you make smart decisions and stay healthy. Because you now have responsibility over your entire life, there is no one to ensure you do this, and it’s now easy to make excuses. You think, ‘Yeah, I didn’t eat that healthy meal today and I didn’t work out, but it’s okay because I will do it tomorrow,’ and then you keep telling yourself that for the next week.
It is always easier to lie to or compromise with yourself than others. This is because it seems as though you aren’t letting anyone else down, and you don’t have to worry about anyone’s disappointment, but really, you’re letting yourself down and are disappointing yourself. You are solely responsible for your life and making it one that you both desire and enjoy. Therefore, you have to learn how to hold yourself accountable and follow through with your plans, promises, and responsibilities. So, instead of compromising with yourself and thinking you’ll do something tomorrow, do it today and don’t settle for anything less than what you want.
Overall, transitioning to adulthood and learning to take care of yourself is hard. It is not something that can be done simply overnight. Make sure to be patient and kind with yourself. Set goals and standards for yourself, then try to stick to them, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are unable to balance it all. It takes time to learn and adjust to taking care of yourself.