No matter how much you enjoy being around your parents, there comes a time when you need to become independent of them. Taking care of yourself in adulthood is an important step in becoming a successful, well-rounded adult. What defines becoming independent from your parents, though?
Leaving your parents’ auto insurance is one of the ways you can become financially independent. Creating a savings account and getting a solid income is another way to carve your own path in life. But being independent doesn’t just mean separating your money from your mother and father.
Making friends outside of your family and leaving the house and getting new hobbies are among the ways adults can be socially and emotionally independent. This doesn’t mean you can’t still rely on your parents when times are tough, though. We’ll discuss that perfect balance that allows you to be a productive adult.
#1 – Do Well in High School
You may not realize it while you are only 16 years old, but doing well in school will give you a lot of opportunities to be independent of your parents once you turn 18. Teens and young adults are often in a rush to grow up, but they don’t realize they are short-changing themselves by not planning for how to become independent.
Getting good grades and doing extracurricular activities will allow you to look attractive to potential college suitors and employers. A majority of the highest paying jobs in the country still require some sort of post-high school education. You might not be able to get college degrees without high school success.
If you are struggling in school, look into tutors or online research paper help. Talk to your guidance counselor or teachers about how to improve your success in school. If you show the drive to get better grades, everything will fall into place. School is the first step to becoming independent, and failing to take it seriously can set you back several years.
#2 – Get a Job
Once you get out of high school or college, it’s time to get a job. Obtaining employment is a massive step in becoming financially independent from your parents. You can start paying for some of your own expenses, from necessities to entertainment.
Not every job allows you to become independent. If you went to college and got a postgraduate degree, you have a plethora of options in fields like medicine, science, computer engineering, etc. These are some of the highest-paying jobs today that will aid you in your quest for independence.
You should be aware the education required for getting a degree in these fields will likely put you into debt. This can make it harder to gain independence from your parents. Ask Mom and Dad if they will help you pay off some of your initial loans to fasttrack your way to financial freedom.
If college isn’t right for you, consider looking at other unique skills you have. Getting a high-paying blue-collar job is not out of the question. Building inspection, police work, plumbing, and electrical work are some of the best options in blue-collar careers.
These jobs require some training, but usually not a fancy college degree that will put you in debt. This means you can start making money quicker out of high school and become more independent. Another option is to look for online courses to further develop your skills that will help you land an in demand job.
Take out a savings account so you have excess money in case of emergencies and other adult responsibilities. This will also help you to retire more easily as a freelance worker or contractor who doesn’t get employer-supported retirement money.
Now that we’ve figured out how to get some money in your pockets, how do you spend it properly to show you are an adult?
#3 – Start Paying for Yourself
Becoming independent doesn’t mean paying for everything all at once. Decide with your parents how you can start helping out around the house with expenses. Most parents are going to encourage you to spend your initial money on items you want for entertainment.
Going to movies with friends, dining, or buying your own video games are all some of the ways young people have fun. It’s also a great first step to financial independence to pay for some of these activities with your money.
As you gain more working experience and your bank account starts to increase, think about asking your parents to pay for your food and groceries. Helping out with the water bill every other month is another way they would appreciate your support.
Think about switching off your parents’ phone plan and auto insurance. The latter item can be pretty expensive before the age of 25. Be a responsible driver during adolescence so you can get better auto insurance rates when you leave your parents’ policy.
If you buy a new or used car, consider getting a safer vehicle. Cars like the Honda Accord are family-friendly and have cheaper insurance rates; sports cars like Ferraris are not affordable in any way.
#4 – Make Friends
Becoming independent doesn’t just mean with money. Many young people have trouble making friends and keeping them after they get out of high school and college. Young adults might decide to grow closer to their parents and spend more time with family if there is a void in their social life.
This is positive and negative. It’s beautiful to have a close relationship with your parents as you go through life, but your mother and father shouldn’t be your only companion. Think about ways to make friends and become socially independent as an adult. Find people at work you have common interests.
Join a recreational basketball league if you enjoy playing sports. Hang out with fellow gamers at a convention like E3. With the pandemic winding down more than a year ago, there are more chances to be around new people again without fearing for your life.
#5 – Decide on Your Living Situation
It would seem the final benchmark for independence in adulthood is moving out. Don’t let society dictate you leave your parents’ house if you aren’t ready yet. As long as you are making friends outside of the house and contributing to the finances inside of it, there is nothing wrong with living at home.
Independent living means something different for everyone. Finding your balance between dependent and independent living is vital to living a productive and happy life. Learning what that means for you will be the first step to becoming an adult.
Shawn Laib writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, Clearsurance.com. He wants to help young adults find out how to become financially secure.