What Makes Somebody an Adult

adulthood personal growth Dec 06, 2022

What does it mean to be an adult? Is it a matter of age? Of experience? Or something else entirely? There is no one answer to this question, as there is no single definition of adulthood. What makes somebody an adult is different for everyone. However, some common traits often define maturity and adulthood. This blog post will explore what makes somebody an adult and discuss the emotional maturity often associated with adulthood.

The makings of adulthood

Adulthood isn't only about reaching a certain age and undergoing physical changes in our bodies. It's more about maturity in the emotional aspect. For example, you may encounter judgmental people who think you are a child if they see you doing something, such as playing video games, watching cartoons, or collecting toys. These activities are not indicators that someone is childish; it's okay to do these things even if you are an adult. What matters more to adulthood is how we handle ourselves when dealing with various situations that require emotional maturity. Somebody who is truly an adult is capable of showing the following traits when faced with particular circumstances.

1. Taking responsibility

Being a responsible adult is a hallmark of adulthood. Responsible individuals know how to be accountable for their actions. If something goes wrong with their efforts, they won't resort to blaming somebody else for the problem. Responsibility also involves taking care of yourself and not relying on others too much for them to give you all the support and help you need.

2. Being in control of your life

As children, we may feel helpless as we cannot still get certain things done, including the comprehension needed to understand why things work. It's normal to rely on our parents and other individuals who can provide what we need and guide us toward what we want. As soon as we reach adult age, things become different. We have already learned about many things and experienced various situations. As a result, we can feel more confident and capable of taking control of our lives and taking the necessary actions to achieve what we want. We can still rely on others sometimes, especially during challenging times when our efforts may not be enough. However, adults no longer need to rely entirely on another person for everything they need and want since they can already take charge of their lives if they are willing to do so.

3. The ability to make decisions for yourself

Decision-making can be a challenging activity, especially for children. They may lack the cognitive ability to make effective decisions since they still don't know about many things, including the consequences that their choices may bring. So they may need to rely on their parents or other adults to make the decision-making. As adults, decision-making can still be challenging; however, we are more capable of making choices and figuring out the better options that can bring the most benefits. Others can still influence us as adults when making decisions, but ultimately, it's up to us to make the call. Somebody who has reached adulthood should be capable of making independent decisions and considering the consequences that can happen. Our choices should ideally follow our beliefs and interests and not rely entirely on somebody else's opinion.

4. Have more control over our emotions

It can be pretty common to see children throwing tantrums whenever they don't get what they want or be emotionally reactive whenever something happens. Unfortunately, this can still be the case for some adults. Some adults can react to the smallest things or make an issue over something minor. It can be shameful to see an adult reacting like a child whenever something doesn't go their way, or someone offends them. It's normal to feel emotions over things, but as actual adults, we should be more in control of our feelings and not let them take over our actions and decisions. We should be more logical and not take things too personally.

5. The ability to listen and understand others

A true adult knows how to listen and understand people. Passing judgments on others too quickly and only thinking about yourself most of the time can be seen as immature. As one becomes more fully grown, we should realize that the world doesn't revolve only around ourselves, and others play a role in our lives. The ability to consider other people's beliefs and circumstances and the time to listen to other's ideas and opinions are traits of one who has become an adult.

6. Have the means to sustain yourself financially

Financial independence is one of the most common traits that an adult has. As children, we still rely on our parents to provide us with everything we need, including things that fall into the leisure category. We can be limited in what we attain and experience while growing up, depending on the financial status of our families. One primary purpose of getting an education is to get a job that can provide us with the means to earn money and sustain ourselves. Therefore, once one graduates from school and is already capable of supporting daily needs and wants through a job, business, or whatever income-producing means, one can say that they have reached adulthood already.

7. The ability to create goals and take action

Adult life involves figuring out our direction and setting goals to achieve what we desire. Part of being responsible as an adult is taking charge of your life and making it more meaningful and fulfilling by identifying your goals based on your beliefs and interests. One must also take action to ensure that your dreams become a reality and not only end up as plans. As we grow up, we gradually get ideas and form values from our surroundings to figure out what we want to achieve. Once we reach adulthood and become more financially independent, we can have the means to make our plans a reality and take steps to reach our goals.

Adult life is more than just appearances.

It may look like becoming an adult means being more serious and pragmatic with life, with our emotions more subdued and experiencing stress from all the problems and challenges that come our way. But adulthood doesn't have to look this way. We can still be emotional and experience glee from various things that happen to us, just like how a child experiences joy from being given simple things like food or toys. We can still do the things we enjoyed as children and continue doing them as adults, such as playing games or watching cartoons. More important is how we deal with situations emotionally, which is where adulthood can show. Not reacting impulsively over everything, having the means to change and improve life by yourself, and knowing how to deal with people properly are some things that can show that you are indeed an adult. You don't need to flaunt these things, as your maturity and responsibility can show in your actions and how you handle things yourself.

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