Happy Saturday! And Happy Birthday to me! I'm not actually writing this on my birthday (just FYI) but am heading to The Ivy in London for a birthday lunch. Anyway, since I will be turning another year older (and hopefully wiser!) when I post this I thought it rather apt to talk about how I have become more independent over the last few years and how it might help you.
I think the biggest thing for me was moving out of my parents' home and living by myself. I wrote a post about buying your first property here if you wanted to check that out. Even if you don't live by yourself I think moving away from parents whether it be to Uni or a house share can make you grow up a lot.
You find yourself having to deal with your own bills, washing, cooking, cleaning and pretty much everything else we took for granted and relied on our parents for. This was a big shocker for me. I was fortunate enough that my mum worked part time and so was always there to cook dinner for us when we came home, we also had a cleaner and my dad refused to take rent money from me.
However, it was a step in the right direction and being more independent has taught me so much. I feel it has grown my confidence as I was always quite shy and nervous. Now I have this 'f*ck it' attitude where I won't let fear bother me in order to get what I want.
Even if you can't afford to move out of home yet, another factor I think contributes to becoming more independent is having a job and earning your own money. It doesn't have to be a full time job or even highly paid but just something that pushes you to think and act for yourself and be in control of your own finances will help heaps.
Being in control of your own finances will also help. When you get paid don't be silly and blow all your cash in one weekend. I know it's tempting! But try to budget and work out how much things are going to cost throughout the whole month and then set a side enough money for each week.
The last factor I think played a big part of my independence was being single and not being able to rely on another person to help me out. For example, a lot of my friends have boyfriends/fiances/husbands who would drive them places and pick them up when we'd be out late. Me, however, would happily make my own way home. I wouldn't let fear stop me from getting around London by myself and it's so easy when you know how!
A lot of my friends also live with their partners and so share the burden of bills, cleaning, cooking etc which is something I've had to deal with alone and for that I am so much more independent and know that I don't have to rely on anyone. Ever.
How have you become more independent?