Tag Archives: responsibilities

Growing up is hard to do

Taking the first steps toward your future is never easy. It’s exciting, yet scary, because for the first time in your life, you’re on your own. You’ve always wanted to feel independent and as if your life is finally yours (and only yours) to live how you please, but now, you’re left feeling like maybe you’re not cut out to make these important decisions by yourself. Like maybe you’re always going to need someone else to help pick you up from the fear and doubt you’ve always felt. But maybe, you are ready to be on your own, to live without fear or reservations, to feel what it’s like to be your own person, to be who you’ve always wanted to be.

Stand on your own two feet. Photo from quickmeme.com
Stand on your own two feet. Photo from quickmeme.com

“Becoming an adult” doesn’t always have to be scary. The very phrase itself is different for each individual. It might mean moving out of your childhood home, getting your first job, taking on more responsibilities than you’ve ever had, or it could mean something completely different, that’s something you need to remember.

Everyone has different experiences with “growing up.” Never try and compare your growth with someone else because you’re never in the exact same situation as the person next to you. Your childhood, economic status, social status, and personal status never has, nor will ever be, identical to someone else’s.

Never think that your own personal growth isn’t enough or isn’t escalating at the rate as someone else. Focus on who you are, who you want to be, and where you want to go in life.

Whether or not you’re ready to take on this new chapter of your life, it’s coming, and it doesn’t have to be scary or intimidating. Even though this new chapter is filled with new responsibilities and different types of emotions, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t ask for help.

Being a mature person means knowing when you need help and not being too fearful or prideful to ask for it. Although it might feel like you’re being abandoned or left to fend for yourself, it isn’t true. There will always be someone willing and able to help you out. You just have to be willing to ask and accept what’s being offered to you. Take one day at a time and remember that, in the end, this is your life to live and you should live to the fullest.

Finding my independence

When I was in high school, I thought about college as a time and place when I could finally get out on my own, find my independence, and live by myself. I thought that I would live in a dorm, make new friends, discover who I am and what I meant to do in this lifetime. However, what I came to discover is I’d be living at home, making zero new friends, and still in the same place, mentally, that I was when I graduated high school.

You're not defined by other people. Be like Tina. Graphic from popsugar.com
You’re not defined by other people. Be like Tina. Graphic from popsugar.com

Living at home is hard. I have to deal with the same dramas, issues, and all around bullshit that comes with having a kind of messed up family. Ever since I was a child, I’ve had to take on a parent role, making sure everyone has what they need and keeping the peace between certain family members. I understand now, that I don’t want to do it anymore. I want to live my own life and meet new people, have new experiences and not be forced into taking care of everyone else. I want a space that I can call my own; a place that my parents can’t storm into and tell me to take care of this or that. I understand that responsibility is a part of growing up, but not the kind of responsibility that I’ve had to handle. I want to be able to show them that I can take care of myself, that I’m ready to be on my own, to become my own person, without their influence or watchful eye.

I need a space that is empty of negative energy. With all of the issues surrounding my brothers and my dad, it’s hard to get away from the overwhelming sadness and frustration that envelopes my childhood home. Don’t think that this makes me ungrateful because I’m extremely grateful for everything my mom has done for me and my siblings. It simply means that I’m ready to have my own apartment, to have my own feelings, to not feel suffocated by other people’s anxieties, to have my own life.  

5 signs that you’re growing up

For most students, college is that awkward bridge between adolescence and adulthood. For us, it seems that just yesterday we were having our first crush or getting our braces removed. As you get into your later years of college, the reality of adulthood seems to be looming just inches over your head. As a kid, all you wanted was to be an adult –but with the reality sinking in, it’s easy to dread the inevitable. Adulthood is a scary thing, so it’s important to recognize the signs that you’re growing up.


  1. Your wardrobe changes

One of the first telltale signs of adulthood is actually wanting to dress like an adult. When you go shopping, you may look at more age-appropriate clothing rather than sweaters with cats on them.

On one of my recent shopping adventures, I found myself looking at button-up shirts and pencil skirts instead of my usually frilly crop-tops and leggings. I didn’t realize until I was checking out that I had made a relatively adult purchase of a plainblue button-up shirt and a maxi dress that didn’t involve sequins or lace.

You also may find yourself slowly feeling more embarrassed about your guilty-pleasure clothing items, such as your Marvel sweater or your brightly-colored skinny jeans. Let’s be honest; you still love wearing those, and the chances of them being donated to Goodwill remain at zero.


  1. You become more responsible with your money

Last year, you would blow your entire paycheck on alcohol, pizza, and/or video games. This year, your money goes directly into the credit card bill(which you ran up buying alcohol, pizza and video games). You may also opt to eat at home instead of blowing money at a restaurant.

As part of your resolution to eat at home, you also find yourself straying away from  Easy Mac and Bagel Bites. Instead, you spend your money wisely on vegetables and fresh meats so you can actually cook a decent meal. You may still spoil yourself with an easy meal every once in a while.

  1. You find yourself staying in more often than not

It’s Friday night and all of your friends are going out to drink. This time last year, you’d throw on your best party get-up and roll out with them. Sadly, things have changed.Tonight you’ve opted to stay in, catch up on homework, watch Netflix and cook one of your adult meals. You may even go out for a little while, but the entire time you’re thinking of all of the laundry you need to do and the fact that partying is what made your GPA the way it is today.

  1. You clean more

On the off chance that you do go out with your friends, your mind keeps wandering back to the fact that your room isn’t pristine. Freshman (or even sophomore) year, you were perfectly content leaving dirty dishes under your bed while you went out and partied –resulting in you coming back intoxicated and adding to the disaster.

When I do go out with my friends, I always make it a priority to clean my room before I leave. This way, I actually have a chance of enjoying myself and not being the girl standing in the corner, picking her nails as  I worry about all of the things my dog could be getting into.

  1. You actually care about your credit.

One of the worst parts of adulthood is keeping your financial situation afloat. In your later years of college, you actually start to wonder how bad or good your credit score is. Because of this, you will likely use your credit card less and start making bigger, more frequent payments. You may be a little more aggressive in getting your roommates to pay the bills on time, especially if they’re in your name.

Growing up is a scary, but rewarding experience. On one side, there are a lot of new responsibilities which can seem intimidating. On the other side, however, there is a world of new experiences and people that we get to look forward to.

Why college is nothing like the real world

Remember how our high school teachers would try and scare us by referring to college as the “real world” while going into a long rant about how much harder our lives are going to be once we’re there? Well, now we’re all here and if this is what real life is like, it’s not half bad! We have more responsibilities, but on the plus side, we don’t have our parents behind our every move to tell us what and what not to do. College is a learning experience, and one of the many things I’ve learned is that this is not what the real world is like. Continue reading Why college is nothing like the real world

Life off campus: Pros and cons

Picture by Stephen Mustgrave

Many of the Students here at RU choose to rent an apartment or house off campus to live for the year. Radford University’s policy for moving off campus is that one must either live on campus for four semesters, live on campus for two semesters and take a class pertaining to living off campus or transfer in as a junior. Many RU students decide to live off campus after their sophomore year and some find a change in their lives. Some experiences are better than others, but in the end the pros and cons end up being about even. Five students were interviewed about their living situations, and most of them had similar good and bad things to say. This semester is the first semester living off campus for each student.

Some students move because their friends move. Junior Ben Belo stated that he would have been completely content living on campus if his friends had stayed as well. Other students tire of the rules associated with living on campus.

“I got tired of mandatory hall meetings and quiet hours and not being able to have pets,” sophomore Stephen Mustgrave said.

Some students prefer having their own space and freedom.

“I enjoy my privacy. I didn’t like living next door to people every day. There’s too much drama in the dorms. Here I get to pick and choose who I talk to every day,” junior Danielle Lare said.

With moving off campus comes big changes. Suddenly there are rent and utility bills to pay, groceries to buy, gas money to budget in and you don’t have anyone to pick up after you. There’s also a commute to factor in with possible parking issues as well. How much of an impact does all this have on students?

“Having to get up earlier to get to class on time is a huge change,” Mustgrave said.

Also, there aren’t the social ties off campus that exist when students live on campus; they aren’t necessarily around other students all the time.

“I don’t hang out with a lot of people I knew before, but I tend to get my work done more,” Lare said.

Living off campus can impact a student’s responsibilities, privacy and comfort and it could impact their academics in some way as well. RU expects its students to put academics first and everything else after. But how does living off campus impact one’s academics?

“I feel like I do more of my academics on campus now, like at the library because things off campus distract me. Campus has a lot more of an academic vibe,” Belo said.

And for some students the commuting factor of living off campus can be a positive where others would consider it a negative.

“It’s made me a better student,” Lare said. ” I have to actually get up and come to campus and wake up where as when I lived on campus I would just roll out of bed and go to class half asleep.”

Picture by Stephen Mustgrave

There are both good and bad sides to living in an off campus house or apartment. It could help prepare students for the real world or it could make them antisocial. Either way it’s the choice of the student. The university stresses to students that they need to be prepared for the changes that may occur with moving off campus. If a student is not ready to move off campus, whether it be financially or maturity wise, there could be consequences and repercussions that could follow them even after they leave Radford.