I am not claiming to be an expert by any stretch, but I like to think that I am slowly getting a handle on being an adult. By trial and error, I have slowly amassed a list of things that help in being a productive and functional adult. (That doesn’t mean that I don’t occasionally eat Tater Tots for dinner…) The first part will focus on the Home, and the Car, and next week will be Clothing, Work, and Friends/Family. I’m a list-er, so I find it helps me stay on track in general!
If you have your own place, live with your parents or a room-mate, own or rent, being an adult means you have to contribute to the upkeep of your space.
–DO NOT GET BEHIND ON DISHES
Dishes add quickly, far more so than any other chore. If you use any large or oddly shaped dishes that take up a lot of room in your dishwasher, consider doing a partial load, or even better- wash them by hand! If you have few dishes, again- just wash them by hand. It will use less energy, and you won’t leave them sitting for days.
–FOLD LAUNDRY AND PUT AWAY WHEN DRY.
It’s an unknown fact of the universe- the longer you leave clean laundry, the harder it is to put it away. Fold, hang, and put away immediately!
–REGULARLY SORT AND PURGE.
On a regular basis, go through everything and purge. Go through the receipts you keep, go through your pantry, go through your bathroom cupboard, go through your sock drawer. Things get old, they expire, receipts are three years old, and you’ve changed shampoo. Regular clothing typically can’t be returned a year later, receipt or no, you don’t need it. Donate what you can, and recycle/throw out the rest. You don’t want to be going through things years later when you are rushing to pack for a move.
–REPLACE ITEMS BEFORE THEY RUN OUT.
Pay attention to dish soap and laundry soap, paper towels and toilet paper, razors, garbage bags, and everything else. A notepad on the fridge works well! When you notice you are running low, pick some up- don’t wait until you are completely out of something. This was you can better shop sales, and just generally not run out of things.
If you are responsible for a vehicle, it is critical that you maintain it- for the safety or you and everyone around you.
–GET REGULAR OIL CHANGES.
I would argue that you can go slightly longer than 3 months/5,000 km in between oil changes, but get used to regular oilchanges. Your car will be more efficient, you will have less upkeep in the long run, and it gives you an extra half hour to hour to read or relax! Also, you don’t have to go to the dealership.
–FILL UP BEFORE IT GETS DOWN TO 1/4 TANK.
I shoot for 1/2 tank, but fill up your car before it gets to 1/4 tank. Yes, you will end up putting the same amount of gas into your car, but 1/2 tank of gas is obviously cheaper than 3/4 of a tank. Also, my Jeep is definitely a bigger top half than bottom- you don’t want to run out of gas when you could have easily stopped for it.
–KEEP LICENSE PLATES AND HEADLIGHTS CLEAN.
No matter how wet and dirty it is outside, make sure that your license plates and headlights are clean. In a lot of places, it can be a ticket if your license plates can’t be read. Keeping your headlights clean is just practical- if it is dark, you need to be able to see. It takes a minute tops to clean your license plates and headlights each morning.
–KEEP WASHER FLUID AND PAPER TOWELS IN THE CAR.
This helps with the above point. If you have forgotten to clean your headlights off, you can pull over and quickly clean them. Also, paper towels are handy in case of a runny nose in a pinch.
What do you consider essential??