“Despise not any man/woman and do not deem anything unworthy of consideration, for there is no man/woman that does not have his/her hour and no thing that does not have its place.”
Ethics of the Fathers 4:3
Every adult faces difficulties in the transition to living independently. The key to living life with the most independence is developing positive relationships, valuable work habits and making good personal choices for healthy living. Even when things get difficult, remember that it’s your constitutional right to be fully included, and actively participate in your community. Once you have the appropriate support in place you can be the key stakeholder in your decisions.
Here are some tips for creating a full life as you enter adulthood:
Establish clear short-term and long-term goals.
After a discussion with your support system about your strengths and interests, set goals for the next year. Then, decide what you need in order to reach these goals. These goals may change over time, but make them as clear and concise as possible. Revisit them annually.
Realize which things you have control over and which you do not.
You have control over your personal goals, but, unfortunately, you have no direct control over the economy or the funding guidelines put into place by the systems in power. Be sure to have an appropriate Plan B ready. If need be, learn how to advocate for yourself.
Find like-minded people who have the same goals.
Other people have gone through this. Find peers to talk with to get ideas. Why reinvent the wheel?
Take care of yourself.
Above all, remember that there is only one 'you.' Make sure you are taking good care of your physical health by maintaining a good diet and getting plenty of exercise. Your mental health can benefit from taking time for yourself and doing what you enjoy. Don’t lose what makes ‘you’ special in the process.
If you are just transitioning to adulthood or have been navigating services and resources for some time, this website is a great place to visit. The NJ Helps Services Home Page is designed to give consumers a “one-stop” shopping resource for the wide range of programs, information, and services provided by the Department of Human Services and its partners to assist individuals, families and communities in throughout the State of New Jersey. In just a few minutes, you can determine if you qualify for more than 28 state and federal programs that can help you find housing, employment, health insurance, and so much more. If you would prefer to use your phone, you may call 2-1-1.