The concept of moving out of home and embracing a new world full of freedom is something that can be exciting to say the least. Moving out is something that can be idealised in our early 20’s as we embark on a more independent phase with many starting uni, getting jobs and craving the freedom that living indecently can create. However, the angst of moving out of home can cloud the realities that often hit hard once leases are signed. How do I know this you might ask? Well, it is something that I experienced first-hand only a year ago and my dreams of living in the inner city were shrouded with bills and anxiety as the realities of adult responsibilities came crashing in. Though, one positive thing to come out of that experience was understanding some fundamental components to living that I had not considered prior, and wish I had of understood before I packed up my childhood bedroom only to unpack it five months later.
This is a major point that often goes unnoticed when the prospect of moving out arises, but is arguably at the forefront of what contributes to a fulfilled and comfortable life. Ask yourself, what kind of lifestyle do I want? What kind of things are positively contributing to maintaining a happy life? Asking yourself a few questions like that before you start prowling Facebook for housemates can help set you up better for deciphering the right steps to take. These elements of lifestyle can be as simple as regular coffees at your favourite cafes or how you like to spend downtime, these simple things can often be sacrificed too easily if they aren’t factored in.
Arguably this is the number one thing and sometimes the only thing that is considered when contemplating the idea of going it on your own. Though, working out if you make enough to pay rent is not enough in many cases. This is where thinking about your ideal lifestyle can come into play as you factor in extra costs like food, social outings, exercise classes and transportation. Getting real with your money can save you a lot of anxiety in the long run and can make you better prepared for the unexpected things like medical appointments and car payments. Learning how to effectively budget to maintain a lifestyle that benefits you is invaluable.
Deciding where to live can be one of the easiest steps of this process, but certainly not the least important. Location will have a direct impact on your lifestyle so it is essential that you familiarise yourself with the community you may choose to call home. This can be very individual based on whether you want to be situated closer to work or study, if there are means of transport available and how much you’re willing to spend on rent. Picture yourself on an average day, doing things you would normally do and work out if the location you’re considering can complement your lifestyle without having to make too many drastic changes.
Above all, be honest with yourself and take the time to thoroughly consider your options. Before you move is the perfect time to start thinking about where you might like to be in five or ten years’ time as you begin understanding what kind of lifestyle you want you will begin to make smarter decisions that will help you to achieve goals and a life that suits you.
What is your lifestyle non-negotiable?