Three things define most adults:

1. The capacity to make decisions

2. The character to accept the consequences of decisions

3. The ability to take care of yourself

Sadly, many never complete the transition from childhood to adulthood.

Like the Biblical Adam, who without a trace of irony, told God it was the woman he was given who was to blame for his troubles; many outsource their decision-making, so they can have someone to conveniently blame.

They consult pastoral oracles when they want to travel or take a new job. They surrender marital decisions to prophets and mothers. They want friends to tell them what to do and allow the media to determine how they think. They fail to do personal due diligence on investments. When things go wrong, they cast about looking for whom to point the finger of blame at. Everyone but themselves.

Decision-making is work. No wonder few do it. It requires effort to actively look for information and then do the critical analysis of interrogating & comparing data, to arrive at a reasoned decision. I even respect those who make “coin-toss” decisions. At least they have the balls to decide.

“Adulting” requires decision-making and it demands character to face up to the consequences of those decisions. In addition, you must learn to take care of yourself and prepare your children to do same.

Let your adolescent children order Uber on their own or enter a public bus. Take a vacation job or register for cooking classes. Learn to do laundry, clean house and negotiate with service providers. Also teach them social skills – how to carry on a conversation and how to behave on a date. Do these things deliberately. Trust me, there’s a masterclass for almost everything, if you are unable to teach some lessons yourself, for whatever reason.

As an adult, until you can successfully survive on your own, without domestic servants or your parents’ supervision, your transition to adulthood is incomplete. (This of course precludes those who are physically or mentally unable to do so.) University often provides a golden opportunity. Don’t waste it.

PS: To read more of my random thoughts, you should get my book, Unscripted.

Time To Grow Up! Click To Tweet