When I was younger all I wanted was independence; my own house and being able to do anything and go anywhere I wanted. Now, as a twenty something having that freedom still means more to me than anything else.

If you have the same yearning for freedom or if you could do with gaining a bit of independence then hopefully my top tips can be of service!

1  Move out

All I wanted when I was younger was my own house and the freedom to decorate it how I wanted! Nothing beats having your own space. Living on your own or with flatmates gives you so much independence as you will gain many more responsibilities and are constantly learning!
Also, you haven’t lived until you’ve battled with the private renting sector; that alone can be a test of many skills and personal growth!

2  Learn to drive

I passed my test at 19 before I moved to university and am so glad I learnt when I was young. While studying I would have never been able to afford it and now I just wouldn’t have the time to commit to it.
I didn’t buy a car as I lived in a city and owning one just wasn’t worthwhile or affordable at that time. However, I would fully recommend learning to drive while you’re still a teenager. Once you’ve passed you’re free to purchase a car at any point and there is no end to the freedom that brings you; a car can be your key to independence.
Not to mention, having a driving licence in the UK also means you can drive abroad- HELLO ROAD TRIPS!

3  Save money

I wrote a post recently to help anyone who struggles to keep a limit on their spending. Having a little bit of cash put aside means you can say yes to last minute trips or book tickets to see your favourite band as soon they announce a new tour. I agree that money doesn’t equal happiness but being savvy and ensuring you have a little saved isn’t a bad thing. Being able to splurge a little on life changing/fun/exciting experiences adds a little more freedom to your life.

4  Get a job- but pick your career carefully

I would encourage anyone who has left school to get a job; even if you’re unsure of your career path, are studying or having a gap year. Earning your own money gives you your first taste of independence, as well as building crucial work ethic, the opportunity to meet new people and the chance to learn more about yourself.

As you continue down your career path, make sure you work out what means most to you. If, like me, you treasure freedom then research industries and jobs that can enable you to have that.

5  Research companies you’d like to work for

This links to the above point. Specific companies will have values that match yours and will appreciate employees with certain personality traits. It’s worth taking some time to figure out which ones are right for you.

6  Go travelling

If you’re unsure of which career route to take, consider going travelling! You will come across all sorts of hurdles that you’ll have to work out how to deal with, your communication skills will be put to the test and you’ll generally grow as a person. You’ll become so much more independent without even realising it and you’ll have the freedom to explore whichever countries you wish.

7  Learn, learn, learn

One of my aims is to ‘learn as much as I can about as much as I can’. Independence comes with being able to take care of yourself, increasing your responsibilities and gaining knowledge and experience.
Learn skills, languages, DIY, read, research. The more knowledge you have, the better you’ll be at surviving on your own!


Words and photo – Effy Summers