I've always heard that as you gain independence, you also gain responsibility. This has been all too true. Getting a car comes with the task of maintaining it. Going to college meant learning to do the activities for myself that my mom did for me when I was still at home. Heading out to drink required planning to get home safely. Beginning my career came with a whole new set of responsibilities and well, work. So, how on Earth do you prepare for these things?!
If I somehow had the answer to that question, I probably wouldn't need to be working my full time job anymore. That would be a pretty valuable life hack to discover. I don't have it all figured out, but I do know that a little planning and soul searching beforehand can help make these life changes more enjoyable. You will not be a functioning adult for very long if you neglect the responsibilities that come hand-in-hand with your freedoms. In fact, overlooking certain aspects of these responsibilities can cause you to lose your independence completely!
One of my most impactful life lessons that I've learned in adulthood so far is that the seemingly small things in the short term can have a huge impact in the long term. Simply making a habit of considering what new freedoms will require of you is often enough to avoid those pitfalls. Be educated! Be aware! And relax- you'll be just fine.
What do you do to embrace the independence in your life? How do you handle what life throws at you?