Hey reader. Are you seeking solace in words on a screen because you thought you knew the definition of exhausted from your college days until you met the newly popular term ‘adulting?’ You’re living on your own, trying to find your place and your way in a new city, getting used to roommates you made connections with through the very screen you’re viewing this on, too afraid to let them see the mental breakdown that may be encroaching?
Or maybe you moved back home after graduation – to save money? To reground yourself after four maybe too chaotic to admit to your parents years? To be closer to or to help out your family? To who gives a damn because that is where you are right now and that is what you’ll make the best of.
New schedules mean new adjustments – but I’m pretty sure what hasn’t adjusted for most of us is the amount of energy we are exerting in all facets of our lives, without really thinking of the repercussions for our mental, physical, and/or emotional health.
While we had the ability to stretch ourselves in every-which-way direction before, the luxury of getting to sleep away the consequences has, for most of us, faded. The harsh reality of a 5:30 a.m. wake up call (even if brief on the weekends because your internal clock sends you into panic that you’re going to be fired for oversleeping your alarm) coupled with trying to go out (and drink) at the same pace as our pre-21 bodies were used to will take a toll if we’re not careful.
So here is a list of things I’m *attempting* to be more cognizant about in order to focus more on caring for myself. Hopefully you and I both benefit from some little changes that will hopefully make a big difference.*Please interpret this term loosely as I’m trying the best I can here, as I know you all are too.)
- Washing my face every morning and every night. – I have always been a huge proponent of the goodness you feel from washing your face. That deep in your belly, things are going to turn out good for once feeling. Yes, I know how ridiculous this sounds. Yes I know you understand the exact feeling that I am describing. Some get it from a good morning stretch or a solid dance party in the shower, I get it from scrubb-a-dub-dubbing my money-maker (not to be confused with Ludacris’s idiom.) Thanks to my lovely new roommate (hey Tor if you’re reading this), I have been re-convinced of the importance of not being too lazy or too drunk to fall asleep with my mascara on, because let’s be honest a caked on or half-wiped off face ain’t a cute look for the artsy, and maybe slightly shambly, brunch you and your friends have planned for the morning after a good night out.
- What I’m putting into my body matters. – Binge drinking is a sad but very real culture that I am sure werking millennials know all too well. If it isn’t a night of dancing and bar hopping down your new city’s strip, it’s Netflix and a wine night in. And if it isn’t happy hour it’s brunch, better if it is accompanied with the word ‘bottomless.’ While we were all nervous and aware of what drinking can do to your body because of the dreaded freshman 15 (or 50) horror stories we had been told, many of us forget how the amount we drink can negatively effect us post-grad. Redefining (and knowing) my limits will not only stop me from potentially embarassing myself outside of a college town where that behavior is expected and laughed along with instead of at, but will also help me from becoming the potato a night after drinking typically turns me into. Water is a great friend whom I should deepen my flirtation and contemplate exclusivity even. *Gasp.* We are extremely lucky and blessed to have access to plenty that is both clean and safe to consume after all. I recently received a Corkcicle bottle as a gift and owning a nice water bottle has significantly increased my desire to stay hydrated.
- Skipping meals just won’t cut it anymore. – Along the lines of realizing that the liquid I’m consuming matters, so does the food because it helps provide me with the energy to get my work done and meet new people and not feel completely and utterly pooped by ‘adulting’ (because if we’re being honest, we’ll all probably feel a little down in the dumps about it from time to time). It is possible to be cost conscious while grocery shopping and still find healthy options to fuel your fire. One meal I never used to think much of was breakfast, but I want to make it an avid point to start my day with a full belly in order to be fully in my right mind. My recent go-to is a smoothie bowl (OJ, frozen fruit of choice, and a whole ripe but not frozen banana topped with fresh fruit, coconut flakes, and a drizzle of honey if I’m feeling fancy.) Keep it simple or become the next insta-famous food guru if you’ve got time to spare.
4. FOMO is better than functioning without a full 8 hours. – A fear of missing out is SO normal and SO real. You want to be with all your new friends, catching up with old ones, and following through on the best laid plans. Specifically during the work week, sacrificing beauty rest just isn’t always worth it. If you’re going to start your day fresh faced and with a fresh meal, you might as well feel refreshed at the same time. Obviously making memories is what life is all about, but not being able to keep your eyes open infront of your CEO during your weekly office meetings just isn’t worth it. An early bed time will pay off for a normalized functioning schedule, or as close to normal we can get to, in order to achieve the city socialite status we’ve dreamt of (even in those days where we didn’t get enough sleep to truly enter a REM cycle for dreams.)
Can’t show the world how to properly werk it unless you’re feeling on your ‘A’ game. And worst comes to worst if your skin is breaking out because you’re stressed and you forgot to wash, your bloated because you chose cheeseburgers over a salad because your soul just needed the damn grease patty, or you’re losing sleep because you just can’t figure out for the life of you how you got a job and how to keep it (or how you’re going to get a job and keep it), always remind yourself…