Adulthood is a scary thing. When you leave school or mom and dad’s house behind and strike out into the world, you’ll likely find that many of the people around you seem to be “adulting” better than you are. It’s sometimes tough to see how others are living; it can make us feel like imposters. All sorts of things can trigger this feeling. One common cause: that glimpse we get of another person’s living space. Coming over for a dinner party or stopping by to pick someone up can introduce you to “adult” decor and living spaces — and can make your own home suddenly feel immature.
But take heart, because you don’t have to live in a glorified dorm room. Here’s how to make your space feel like an actual adult lives there.
Houseplants are interior decorating staples, and for good reason. They’re pleasant to look at and are, in most cases, affordable and easy to take care of. A beautiful plan can make a room come alive. Plants can even be healthy: Some are known to improve air quality in your living space. Plus, houseplants will show others that you’re capable of taking care of a living thing — never a bad look, especially if you’re trying to impress a date.
A Well-Stocked Bar
Assuming that you have a healthy relationship with alcohol, a well-stocked bar is a must-have for any adult home. When you were in college or living at home, it was enough to offer a Coors light to anyone who walked in the door. As an adult, though, you can’t be tossing cheap beers at everyone you have over. So, add to that collection! This doesn’t have to mean buying lots of expensive IPAs, point out the experts who distribute alcoholic beverages. Just invest in some nice liquors and wines. Switch up what type of alcohol you get (consider different alcoholic drinks you could make). Be sure to have at least one option each for vodka, whiskey, and rum.
Your investment won’t go to waste: Liquors will usually keep for a long time even after they’ve been opened, and unopened wines can even become better with age (though most of the wines that sensible, budget-conscious people buy are won’t improve much with aging). You’ll gain the ability to offer people all manner of different drinks, making your home a more hospitable place and making you look more like a connoisseur and less like a college party host.
A Smart Home Network
We’re living in the future, so make sure that your home reflects that. Modern conveniences and smart home devices make life around the house easier and more fun. You can ask your smart speaker to turn up the music when you have guests over, or you could use your smart clock to set timers while you cook dinner for one on a weeknight. Smart thermostats let you set the temperature from afar, helping you to save energy — and money. Smart home devices can make your space more functional, more comfortable, and perhaps even more cost-effective.
Be sure to invest in smart home devices that work well with each other. Build around a smart home hub and adopt new devices one at a time after saving up for them. Investing in your home’s smart home system and smart home devices is a great way to improve your living space. Before you know it, you’ll be issuing voice commands, checking your video doorbell, listening to music on the best smart speaker you can find, and video chatting with people on your echo show.
You remember books, right — the things with the paper and the words? In our high-tech modern world, books aren’t as common a sight as they once were. But even the biggest fans of e-books and online entertainment should have a few books in their home. In fact, it’s okay to have more books than you have time to read!
That’s because paper books are, in their own way, as useful as digital ones: They can be loaned to friends or left on the coffee table as entertainment for visitors, for example. And books look beautiful on shelves, making them a functional sort of decor. Finally, there’s the factor that’s relevant to our subject here: Having a few books around will make your space feel more grown-up.
Perfecting Your Space
Creating a better living space won’t be an overnight project. As you enter the world of adulthood, don’t forget just how many years of hard work added up to create the homes that your parents and other older folks have. Be smart: Don’t try to emulate that lifestyle right away. Save carefully, live frugally, and add things like those listed above as you become able to afford them.