How To Look Like You Have Your Shit Together

We’ve all met that person. 
The person who is in their 20’s and seems to just have it all together.
I am not that person.
You might not be either.

What is it that makes them seem so grown up?
Do they have it all figured out?
Hell no.
They don’t. If they think they do, they’re lying to themselves.
But they look like they do.
I would bet that I come off as one of those people 90% of the time in real life.
To those who don’t really know me and even some who do.
Here’s how to pretend to be one of those people,
you little poser, you:
1. Have a planner. And hey, while you’re at it, try to keep yourself in check regarding the cover. Your planner should not look like a unicorn farted on it. So get that colorful planner and use it for your blog. Or your life. But don’t whip it out in front of anyone who gives input on your yearly raise.

Left: Yes, Right: No. Also, backwards?

2. A breath mint will not erase those 5 beers you just drank. It amazes me how many college kids think this will work. I encountered this one recently and pondered my former stupidity. File this under: how to smell irresponsible. 
3. Tuck your shirt in. While you’re at it, wear a watch. And throw on some glasses if you got ’em. The deadly combo of grown up looks.
4. Get involved with any organization that people take seriously. For instance, I’m an advisor for a collegiate chapter of Delta Gamma. How effing grown up do I sound? Little do they know, I’m desperately jealous of their every cocktail, formal, and greek week.
5. Get a dog and then treat it like your child. I’m not saying people will take you seriously, but having a dog does kind of say “I’m settled and responsible.”

He was just keeping up with the Kardashians this weekend.

6. Replace the term “boyfriend” with “significant other.” I personally venture so far as to say “partner” on occasion. What? We’re raising a dog child together!
7. Try to keep some awareness of what’s going on in the world. I get my news the best way: twitter. It just so happens that most of the people I follow on twitter (hey other bloggers!) don’t tweet much about world happenings. As a result, when my boss casually asks me about some news story, I’m clueless. 

Help yourself out and scan so you can have a vague conversation about Kim Jong Un or “the situation” in Israel/Palestine (ahem, not the Jersey shore).
8. Keep your kindle on you to read in moments of downtime. Waiting for the train? Sitting in the doctors office waiting room? Kindle. Playing on your phone says “I’m tweeting.” Reading your kindle says “I’m an intellectual.”Just don’t tell them you’re reading Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me.
9. Have a work bag. Work bags are the new school briefcase. They scream “grown up”. Do not, under any circumstances, have duct tape on said bag. It undermines the professionalism.

What? I didn’t say I take my own advice.

10. Get business cards. I can’t tell you how weird it feels to give someone my card. I feel like mine says:

Actually says: Program Director. That ish cray.
I think this is just the mental feeling of your twenties. Life is changing fast and slow at the same time. But maybe it’s a life long thing. Maybe we never have it figured out. I don’t know that I’ll ever feel like a grown up. I’m hoping that’s a good thing.
How do you fake it?
What’s your “I’m a grown up” move?
Do tell, because I need something to counteract that duct tape.

  • Also how to pretend: Keep your car clean (inside and out). And have a reusable water bottle and coffee mug.

    I love this list.
    I love you.

    That’s all

  • Yep, totally get it. I probably look like I have it together. I’m 28 and I own my house, have 3 kids and a respectable job. But I soooo don’t have it together at all and I still feel like a kid in my head. I hope I feel like I have it together by the time I’m 40. “Life is changing fast and slow at the same time” love that quote and it’s perfect for how I feel. Have a great Monday!

  • hahaha i love this. i certianly don’t have my shit together. half the time i can’t even find my watch. whoops.

  • A unicorn def farted on the cover of my planner! hahah. I have been dying for a new one!

  • I love this post! Does it count that I have a planner for my blog? Haha. Getting a dog actually proved to me I am not a grown up. I struggle to manage myself and feeding and walking the dog. I am clearly not ready to be in charge of another living creature.
    Penniless Socialite
    Jewelry Giveaway!

  • Hahaha this is awesome! I whipped my iPad out to take some notes in a mewing last week and I forgot my background was this ridiculously bright and colorful photo of shopping bags. Awesome. 🙂

    • Mewing? No. Meeting. How to also
      Look like you have your shit together – proofread. 🙂

  • I stared at the screen for several minutes trying to think of how to look like a grown up, and then I looked down at my work bag. Which has a broken zipper, shoulder strap frayed to the point of ripping off, and oh yeah, it’s bright orange.

  • I’m 30 and I sure don’t feel like a grown up. lol

    Recent Post: Evy’s Tree Giveaway

  • I love this post! And probably need this advice…I’m graduating in a little over a year, and am terrified that the world will be able to read “not a grown-up” in bold print on my forehead…
    <3 Kiersten

  • I love this! I do have business cards for work and a very “professional” business card holder. I have 2 planners – one for life and one for blogging. I do, however, need to get a watch!

    *erica* –

  • Tucking in shirt = instant grownup. You know I’ve been working on that! I made sure to tuck in yesterday when we went househunting. I wanted to look responsible & wasn’t sure if the baby I was carrying was enough.

  • This is Uhhhhmazing. I ALWAYS lose my watch and I feel like my glasses just make me look lazy. But I adore this post!

  • this is perfection. work bags with kindles/ipads and business cards are so necessary.
    side note, I am dying to be a advisor for one of the local chapters of my sorority. except the whole moving thing is getting in the way.

  • I love this! And isn’t it kind of crazy how a having a planner can suddenly make you feel so much more together and “adult”? I don’t think I’m anywhere close to having my shit together, but I’m certainly trying–which counts for something, right? 🙂

  • A planner totally helps me keep my shit together!

  • Haha, I`m totally reading Is Everybody Hanging Out Without Me? right now! And I do think of people who own dogs as more mature- that’s a big responsibility!

    Some Snapshots Blog

  • I recently just turned 30 and I still want to call up my mom sometimes and just say “I don’t wanna grow up”…..some days are better than others but sometimes I just want to be a kid again with no worries or responsibilities.

    xo Dinah @ sunshine super glam

  • Oh gosh. I feel like a little kid all the time so I neeeed these tips to pretend. I’m 25 going on 18.

  • hahahaha! I love the nixing of the word “boyfriend!”
    Also, Is everyone hanging out without me is awesome! 😀

  • I have some really great blazers, but I don’t wear them very often because they look so grown up 😀 I’m 27 and I live with my boyfriend and we’re moving to a new house next month. I guess I seem pretty grown up to some people, but I don’t feel it at all.

  • I’m tackling this on my blog this week because it’s like you turn 30 and all of a sudden life is Totally Different! Caught me completely off guard. Something to look forward to 🙂

  • I hate tucking shirts in and I just realized it’s probably just to rebel against my Dad!
    When I decided to “grow up” I changed my ringtone from JT’s Sexy Back to just a plain old ring…booorring!

    Love this post! 🙂

  • I just cried I laughed so hard. This is freaking awesome. Probably saying things like “Freaking awesome” is already one strike against grown up Sarah…. Oops.

  • This is great! Off to by a “sensible” planner… haha! And calling my boyfriend “partner”. We’ll see how he feels about that..

  • Awesome! This is one of the funniest (and scary true) things I have read to date! I definitely feel like this could totally be me…you know, fake it till you make it! Thanks for sharing friend! Love it!

  • Ha! I only have the dog from this whole list!! 🙂 (Yes, raising a dog with a “significant other” automatically ups the ante of any relationship…of that I’m certain:) I need a work bag I think, if I would actually use it. I think being clean and put together outfit wise always makes me think someone has it together. I usually notice these things in line at the bank…the lady in front of me always has an uncluttered key chain, acrylic nails that are totally clean, clean/unwrinkled clothes that look like she just got dressed though it’s 5:00. I’m always standing there with dirty hands (don’t ask how…dry erase markers, whatever, I always have to clean my nails when I get home), feeling sweaty, disheveled hair, makeup worn off, and something probably spilled on my shirt. 🙂 I never feel like I’ve got it together.

  • i am the youngest one in my office and oddly i dress the most professional. i also have the planner, watch, kindle, work bag and business cards. i am also redoing my office in the next month. however, it will be pink, gold and have stripes. i can walk, talk, look and act like a grown up, but i still let my inner 5 year old come play at work. because she’s fun and has candy. which oddly works in my favor. boss loves the reese’s and jelly beans on my desk.

  • Have a kid. That’ll definitely make you look grown-up! Haha I still rarely feel like a grown-up. I am an extremely young mom, so that’s part of it, but still. You’d think having a baby would make me feel completely like a grown-up.

  • Haha I love this post. I wish I had something cute or clever to say but I don’t. I just really like this.


  • This is a great list! I died!

    I appreciate your inclusiveness by saying “partner” I try to say it as well rather than husband but then people look at me like I’m insane!
    I’ve considered advising a chapter for my sorority but I know I’ll get super jealous of their “youth.”
    That book is one of my favorites! I actually was waiting for a friend at the airport and pulled up the Kindle app on my iPhone to reread parts of it. Another good way to look like you have your shit together is “walk with purpose” people will think you’re important and it’s easy to fake.

  • I love this. And I do admit, I LOVED making the switch from boyfriend, to fiance, to husband. Also, is having your shit together synonymous with being old?!

  • Love this especially #5, 9 and 10. 🙂

  • Good thing I just got a watch and wear it regularly now! Hopefully I scream GROWN UP!!!
    Not sure if I have another grown up move though, but I loved the ones you came up with.

  • This is wonderful. I need to make the switch with ‘Boyfriend’ I feel like every time I say it people look at me like I am 17.
    Do you read ‘The Skimm’?? It is amazing for updating you on the issues of the day and it is super easy to read.
    I don’t always have time to read every news article, so this is a great way to keep myself up to speed.

  • I couldn’t come up with any more ways to look like a grown up, but I totally relate to this! I have a watch but I never remember to wear it, oops. 🙂

  • Lol hilarious. I definitely have electrical tape on my work bag… it blends in better!! 🙂

  • Wait a second… I don’t do most of these. I guess I’m bad at pretending to have my shit together. Also, I should probably remove the hot pink case from my phone but I just love it too much!

  • I agree with ALL of these!! Especially the one about the phone. Even if you are using your phone for news or something playing on it does scream Facebook or Twitter… in fact just about every time I am on my phone my fiance is saying “How’s Facebook?” or “How’s Twitter”… I would also say getting a more “professional” looking phone cover is signs of having your act together. I know the phone covers that look like gameboys, elephants, owls, etc. are cute, but they do not scream “professional” or “I have my act together”

  • Hhaha I have to use some of this to cover up my mess of a life! 26, a masters degree with a min wage job and a room in her parents room. Yeah I’m trying desperately to get into the grown up world. I really really don’t have my shit together…yet. This just made my day! Great post 😀

  • I’m 25, have 2 kids (ok, they are dogs) & SO do not have my shiz together. I finally started to feel grown up when I called my boyfriend my FIANCE for the first time right after we were engaged…. next top grown up ville! I think we are the Peter Pan generation, we will never actually grow up, fancy work bag and all!

  • Hahaha! This is a great post! I totally fake my way through it too!

  • Hahaha this is a fun post. And totally fitting. No one has their shit together!

  • HA HA! This is really funny! So many out there who seem like they have it together, but really don’t!


  • Love this.. makes me giggle! When I was in my 20s I was a hard partying advertising executive.. I work hard during the day and party hard during the night. I’m sure I did my fair share of ‘boo-boo’ back those days ;D This is a great read, well done!


  • Freaking love this post. I ALWAYS feel so childish and I’m 28! The duck tape one hits home. My work bag’s life is being extended by black electrical tape. At least it matches!

  • Ha LOVE this post…you think your faking it now…wait til you have kids and you wake up every morning with this one thought “who thought it was a good idea for me to me a mamma?”, it’s twelve years down the track and I’m pretty sure my daughter is more grown up than I am. 🙁 I do try!

  • Haha I love this post! I need a watch… I wish I would have won one of the Michael Kors watch giveaways that I entered! For now my flip flops watch will have to do (at least it’s silver and gold color). 😉

  • Liz

    Hahaha I lovee this, and I’ve definitely attempted a few of these — especially because I’m short and already look young, I always feel like people think I’m still in college or something. For those people, I throw on a good pair of perfect black heels and that automatically makes me feel more adult — can’t explain exactly why, but it works for me!

    xo, Liz

  • I absolutely got a planner after I read this. Love your blog! I’m so glad you wrote this! I’m one of those people that wishes they had everything together and I’m so envious of those who do!

  • My planner has found a great place to sit, under the magazines I have bought that look “cool and adult” that I never read. I love you that is all.

  • MissyStew

    This was so cute! I’m in my 33 and the only difference now is that I have a nicer car and apartment. I still feel ridiculous when I hand someone a business card, and I also get current event updates from twitter. The best adult habit I have now is jotting things down on post-its and then I stick the post-its in that week of my planner. I feel like it looks awesome when my boss walks past my office door and I have what appears to be color coded post-it notes with vital info across my open day planner (even if they’re just covering up my doodles).

  • Toni

    I have this sick obsession with looking pulled together. I’m a 22 year old online college student who wears heals while doing things around the house so I know how to walk in them in public.
    Anyways, this list is great. I need to get a decent purse for sure (love my Vera Bradley but I want something with structure) and I’m now giving my pink planner the evil eye. But hey, it’s not glittery or rainbow colors right?
    One thing that I think says a lot about a person, is their nails. I like to keep my fairly short and freshly painted at all times. Granted, I’m broke and have to paint them at home with cheap polish, but it looks better than the chipped, chewed on mess that my nails were a few years ago, right?

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  • Hahaha this is hilarious =)


  • I absolutely love this! Such an awesome list. Looks like I’m doing pretty good. I just need a work bag and business cards!

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