1. Becoming an adult means learning that having compassion is more than being a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen. It’s maturity and the understanding of others emotions. An understanding of your emotions and seeing how not only their actions affected you, but how yours affected them as well. Compassion is showing gratitude even when you do not need to and apologizing even when the ego is screaming “never.”
2. Becoming an adult is about more than just paying taxes and going to work everyday to pay bills. It is about learning how to release pettiness and grudges. It is learning how to be emotionally intellectual with your relationships. To be able to see a situation from every perspective, but attach yourself to none of them as the victim.
3. Becoming an adult means knowing better than to hold onto anything, because everything changes. Nothing is permanent. Not friendships, relationships, your things, money… None of it. This means we must swallow the hard pill: we cannot base all our happiness on things that change, which is everything, or else we will suffer. Like a child who drops their ice cream and cries in misery, that will be us with every little thing that changes in life. We must grasp the understanding, when one door closes another must open. When we no longer resist change, change becomes easier. It feels better.
4. Becoming an adult means we step out of the victim role. We can no longer blame our pain and suffering onto others because of what they said or did to us. The past is finished and as much as humans believe we can change it by obsessing over it, we cannot change what no longer exists. All we have the potential to change is our future, and the only thing we have absolute control over is the present moment and how we react to it. That is it. So we, as adults, must learn to accept the past and take the responsibility to heal our hearts from it. Truly heal it, not cover it or ignore it.
5. Becoming an adult means you must realize: even though dreaming is half the fun of it, it is not all of it. The world will not just hand you your biggest desires and dreams on a golden plate (unless you are just really lucky.) You must work for it, hard. The bigger the dream, the harder you must work. If you truly want something, you must truly want it, at your core. In all of your being. That is the only way the universe will truly understand and see your intentions, but those intentions must be full of gratitude and love, for the greater good of everyone. Even yourself.
6. Becoming an adult means you learn mature conversations and compassion will get you further than any grudge or bitterness. This one is self-explanatory. You may feel as a child that your pride is bigger than your compassion, but as you get older, you will realize grudges burn you as much as hot coal. The longer you hold onto it, the worse the burn will take to heal.
7. Becoming an adult means there’s a lot of things you don’t want to do. Like a lot. Mostly everything. But it’s your responsibility to be better than who you were yesterday. As a child we had to be taken care of, there’s no question there, but now we have no excuses. We have everything we need within ourselves to succeed, we had 18 years to become who we are. Now it’s our decision to decide if we stay how we once were or if we become better. Always choose to be better.
8. Becoming an adult means understanding, there are somethings you cannot reverse. You’re now stuck with whatever decision you have made. Your parents cannot just come fix it with the “magic wand” of taking the responsibility every time. You can either choose to sulk and be miserable or figure out how to be proactive and problem solve. Once again, another hard pill to swallow but one worth taking.
9. Becoming an adult means trusting yourself and feeding your own confidence. As a child we turned to the adults for confirmation. Is this right? Is this wrong? Well, now who’s the adult? Will you always run to your parents for every decision or stay up at night wondering of their approval? Or even the approval of your peers because for so long that’s who you based your interests upon? No. You must turn inwards now. You have an entire story, an entire life to create, and it’s meant to be filled with every memory you ever wanted and every mistake you chose to make on your own. Not what your parents would’ve wanted or what your friends would’ve done. You must switch your mind from “what should I do” or “what would they want me to do” to “what do I truly want?” And trust that feeling. Don’t try to dissect or manipulate it, trust it and follow your own intuition and heart.
10. Becoming an adult means confronting trauma. Your trauma is not something to be accepted or denied by anyone else. If something made you feel hopeless, afraid, and alone it’s qualified as trauma. If you believe it is trauma, it is trauma. As an adult you no longer allow others to accept or deny your emotions, you simply allow them. You provide your own safe space for your emotions. You confront your wounded child and mother your wounds. You have two options as an adult: you confront this inner child with love, peace, and acceptance. You work through every kink and dark corner of your heart, even the ones you’ve promised to never look into again, and you shine light into them. You take everything you’ve learned so far in your life and find your ways of healing. You reflect and heal. Reflect, observe and heal. Over and over and over. And your other option: deny and resist your true hearts calling. Drown out your wounds with distractions until they’re too blurry to understand anymore. Never heal your inner child and avoid becoming the best version of yourself in this present moment.
As an adult it’s our responsibility to accept who we are and who we will become. No one else’s.
These are some of the major lessons I have learned while becoming a young adult. I hope that these can help you as much as they helped me. Some of these are hard to grasp, I know, but the more we work to evolve from who we once were, the better human beings we can become. I believe in everyone reading this and I know we all have the potential to live our best lives. Thank you for reading, and once again, I hope this helped! Love, Shi.