10 Signs Your Teen's Ready to Leave the Nest

It might be tough to see them move out, but teens who plan to live independently for the first time are at a crucial developmental milestone. These traits will help you gauge if your child's ready for the change.

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1. Pay Attention to Small Successes

Young adults with self-management skills set realistic, short-term goals. This includes: Creating and completing a list of chores or homework assignments for the day. Planning a social event.

2. Gauge Her Self-Control

Maturity involves delaying gratification when appropriate. Balancing "what I want to do" and "what I need to do" is essential for self-management. This includes: Knowing when to play video games and when to complete that math assignment.

3. See How He Handles New Responsibilities

Mature people feel accountable for their actions. They take pride in achievements and responsibility for mistakes. These individuals can also accept supervision and constructive criticism.

4. See Whether He Sticks to a Schedule

Waking up and falling asleep at reasonable hours is important for staying with a schedule. Teens who follow routines consistently demonstrate independence. Young adults should be able to attend class, get to work, and eat meals at normal times on their own.

5. Watch How Self-Directed She Is

Following directions and working independently are essential skills for succeeding in school and work. Self-directed workers do not need praise or monitoring to stay on-task.

6. Monitor Her Money Management Skills

So, your child wants to live independently? Make sure he can manage his money. Important skills for being money savvy: Make deposits. Write checks. Pay bills. Keep simple accounts. Spend within budget.

7. See How He Handles Hygiene

Self-care and good grooming is a must. Young adults who are ready to leave home should know how to bathe and clean living spaces and clothing.

8. Observe Whether He Can Stay Well Nourished and Get Around

Eating and traveling are important skills for independent living success. Make sure your child knows how to shop for food and prepare basic meals. Driving or safely navigating public transportation is needed to get around.

9. Promote Healthy Habits

Young adults should know how to care for themselves and others. This includes: Take medicines on time. Understand consequences of drug and alcohol abuse. Practice safe sex. Know how to act appropriately in a medical emergency, a fire, or a power outage.

10. Encourage Courteous Communication

Socially mature individuals initiate and keep up friendships and professional relationships.They also communicate appropriately with supervisors, teachers, co-workers, and service-providers.

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