Why Some Young Adults Are Failing to Launch

Nov 9 / Michelle Arseneault
It's a common sight these days: young adults living at home with their parents long after they should have left the nest. There are many reasons for this phenomenon, but one of the biggest is the economy. It's harder than ever for young people to get started in life, and with student loan debt at an all-time high, many are forced to take whatever job they can find instead of chasing their dreams. In this article, I'll explore some of the reasons why young adults are failing to launch and offer tips on how you can help them leave the nest!
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Main reasons for failing to launch

Economic factors

With the cost of living constantly increasing and wages failing to keep up, young adults are struggling more than ever to make ends meet. Many can't afford to move out on their own or take the risk of starting a business or pursuing a career path that doesn't offer a stable income quickly.
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Lack of support and guidance

In today's society, young adults are often left to figure things out on their own. There is less of a focus on family and community support than there used to be, which means that many young people lack the guidance and advice they need to transition successfully into adulthood.
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Social factors

The digital age has brought with it many benefits, but it has also created new challenges for young adults. Social media, online dating, and constant distractions can lead to a lack of focus and motivation. Young people need to learn how to manage these factors to succeed in today's world.
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Mental health issues

Finally, some young adults are failing to launch due to underlying mental health issues like anxiety and depression. These conditions can make it difficult for them to leave their comfort zone and pursue the things they want in life.
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Schools no longer teach basic life skills

Another big reason why young adults are failing to launch is that many schools no longer teach the basic life skills and values that they need to become independent. This includes things like budgeting, time management, and setting goals. Without these crucial skills, it becomes much harder for young people to thrive on their own.

So, what can you, as parents, do to help young adults leave the nest and become successful on their own?
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Parents lecturing adult son

How parents can help their adult children to become independent adults:

As parents, there are a few things you can do to help your young adult children launch successfully into adulthood.
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Support your adult child's dreams and goals

First and foremost, it's important to be supportive of their dreams and goals, even if they might not seem realistic or practical to you. Encouraging them to explore different career options and providing the resources they need to achieve their goals can go a long way in helping them to become more independent.
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Be realistic about today's reality (do your homework!)

You should also be realistic about the current job market and help your children navigate it by offering advice and guidance on how to find work, build their networks, and stand out from the crowd. It's important to give them up-to-date advice because things don't work the same today as they did when you were their age. If in doubt, seek professional guidance.
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Model financial responsibility

You can support young adults by setting an example of financial responsibility yourself - by living within your means and saving for the future, you will show them that it is possible to be successful without breaking the bank.

Don't be afraid to be honest with them about your finances. Talk about mistakes you've made, how much your salary is, and what the household expenses are. Parents often think they will worry their kids if their finances aren't the greatest but giving them a reality check when it comes to money can be a great motivator for them. If they know you are struggling a little bit financially, they may feel a greater desire to get a job and contribute to the household.
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Treat them like an adult

Allow them to learn from their mistakes. Teach them that there are consequences to their actions and choices. Let them know that you are there to provide guidance and support, but not to bail them out each time they make a less-than-great choice.

By giving them the space and freedom to figure things out on their own, you will help them grow as an independent adult.
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Let go of the "apron-strings"

Encourage them to seek out support and guidance from family, friends, mentors, and professional counselors or coaches. This can help them develop the skills and confidence they need to succeed on their own. Connect them with others who can provide support and friendship, such as other young adults in a similar situation or mentors who have been successful in life.
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Help them set clear goals

Help them set clear goals for themselves and provide the resources and encouragement they need to achieve those goals. This could mean helping them find a job, start a business, or pursue their dreams. By setting specific and achievable goals, young adults will be more likely to succeed in life.
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Teach them organization skills

Work with your young adult to develop good organizational skills. This includes things like managing their time effectively, creating a budget and sticking to it, being punctual, and saying no. Help them stay organized by providing resources like budgeting tools, time management apps, or study schedules.
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Help them to develop solid self-care habits

Encourage them to develop healthy habits like regular exercise, proper nutrition, and stress management techniques that will help them stay focused and motivated in today's fast-paced world. By helping your young adult build solid self-care habits, you will enable them to become more resilient and better equipped for the challenges of adulthood.
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Set clear boundaries and expectations

Set clear boundaries and expectations for your child, and make sure they understand what you expect from them. This may include things like having a job, going to school, or doing chores around the house. Be consistent with your rules and expectations so that they learn what is expected of them and feel supported in meeting those expectations.

At the end of the day, failing to launch is often a symptom of larger societal issues. In short, we need to recognize that young adults are struggling today and give them the support they need to succeed. With the right guidance and encouragement, they can become independent, successful members of society who make positive contributions to our world. So, let's work together to help young people leave the nest and truly launch into adulthood.
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