Preparing For Adult Responsibility

You are no longer the child of yesteryears. Now you have entered into the circle called manhood or womanhood respectively. It cannot be said that you are too young to know certain things. Legally, that time starts from 18. Really it takes till one’s twenties, usually the mid-twenties and even then many in that age are young enough that they are still trying to figure out what they want from life. Welcome to adulthood and all its attendant problems.

You now have to face man’s numero uno problem in the modern world: how to earn your living. Except you want to regress into living in the jungle alone off of Mother Nature, you’ve got to find a job and earn your pay to enjoy present comforts. There are no two ways about it. A parent has to start preparing their kids for the duties of living as an adult from an age when they are young enough to grasp how society works. You can make that when they are legally adults, or their twenties when their bodies fully mature, or in their wee teens when they are just beginning to wise up to the harsh ways of the world. I’d pick the last. I am certain if my parents trained me up to handle the burdens of adult living knowing what was going to happen as I turned 18 life would have been different for me.

So far I have had to learn the ropes by myself, learning from mistake after painful mistake, hoping I get it right sometimes. My misadventures with money till date are a story for another day which can be treated in an article of it own. Suffice to say, that my main weakness has been spending excessive money on ‘binge eating’ if there was ever such a term. It is true discipline is self-taught, but there is a role a parent play in instilling it into the child.

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The same for financial wisdom. It struck me how Rich Dad in Kiyosaki’s bestseller Rich Dad, Poor Dad taught his kids at a young age the value of thinking outside the box on money at a young age. Those guys were put on the right path to wealth and entrepreneurship at a tender age, their perspectives changed by a man who saw them as young enough and smart enough to learn the lessons he was teaching. Adults tend to underestimate kids forgetting they also were there once. Teach them money handling from a young age like Ben Carson’s mother did him. Society may be the better for it. One wonders if the looters who plague Nigeria were ever taught to tame their insatiable want for material pleasures.

Adult responsibility may also entail marriage. Not everyone will marry but mother Nature has imputed to us a sexual urge that is so strong that no man is at times compelled into marriage because of sexual misadventures and the resulting child. When you are married you have a spouse and kids to consider in all that you do. You are forced to think how mistakes on your part can negatively affect them. Being married means you have been emotionally prepared to run with a cause you commit to for an indefinite period which is what marriage is. It means you are trustworthy enough to uphold your vows and you are honest and responsible enough to let your partner know the real you. Many problems in life revolve around the family which is the unit that has been the foundation of society since man first existed.

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You want to beware the company you keep as well. They can make or break you. The friends you keep influence what you think and the habits you develop. You want friends that will add something substantial to your life instead of taking away from you. It is a mark of wisdom to keep responsible friends who tow the right path in life while making constructive use of their time. They will always be the challenge to you to follow the high burden proper morals places on a person. People of low morals flock together and though they enjoy what they can, are often the worse for it. But even if we must assume they were the better for it would that justify the evils they engage in? Is fraud not evil no matter the monetary benefits that may accrue? Besides, there is always a price to be paid, sooner or later.

A final advice would be to never rest on your oars. You can’t afford to. You cannot let life blow you as the wind blows a leaf. Seize your day. Make do with something that may benefit you in the future. Despite having an inheritance that sustains me I cannot say I totally whiled away time doing nothing.

Use money wisely, watch the friends you keep and don’t make your adult life a waste; seize it by making something of yourself in the world.

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