#Adulting 101: If It Feels Wrong, You’re Doing it Right

“I did way too much adulting today. I’m going to my mom’s to go have dinner, ‘cause I’m over this.”

If your life consists of paying bills, making your own breakfast, and getting genuinely excited about buying new kitchen appliances—congratulations, you’re adulting. 

Our team at All Home Connections sat quietly at our desks and analyzed Twitter data (a very adult thing to do), so we could tell you exactly what states across the US think adulting really is. We determined there are seven common adulting categories: work, car, family, food, money, home, leisure, and health.

If you’ve ever dealt with mundane, everyday tasks in any of these categories, looked up at the ceiling, and wondered, “How did I end up in this situation?” there’s a pretty good chance you’re not alone. Check out the map below to see what other residents of your state are dealing with in the adult world.

Work Adulting (A.K.A., the Definition of Adulting)

Nothing says adulting more than work work work work work. Every day, 9-5, same people, same coffee, maybe even the same pants. No summer break for you, no sirree. This is adulting at its finest. And nothing makes you worry about work more than not having work.

Wisconsin has an unemployment rate of 2.9% (one of the lowest in the country) which could contribute to all of their work tweets. What do you do when you have a job? You tweet about it on the clock. Obviously.

Car Adulting

“Car Adulting” is for everyone who’s popped a tire on the freeway and changed it themselves, got excited about gas prices going down, needed to get their oil changed (and scheduled their own appointment to do it) paid for car insurance, sold a car, bought a car, browsed Craigslist for a car, washed a car, and spent more than five minutes at a time thinking about cars in any capacity.

South Carolina, Mississippi, and New Jersey residents are especially concerned about car-adulting.

Family Adulting

The moment you even think about having a family of your own, you’ve crossed the threshold of adulting. Having a family is the ultimate form of adulting. Shoutout to every parent who’s ever rocked a crying baby, put on dinner, folded laundry, and called your mom, all at the same time. 

You’ll find states tweeting about their families everywhere from Nebraska to Alaska. Because at the end of the day, no matter where you’re from, you can’t live with ‘em, you can’t live without ‘em. 

Food Adulting

Is food the purpose of life? Possibly. If you’ve ever eaten (and enjoyed) brussel sprouts, you’re adulting. Unsurprisingly, food is the most common tweet category, with 13 states discussing it more than anything else. 

If you’ve ever searched Pinterest for the perfect crockpot recipe, taken a vitamin, slaved over a hot stove after a full day’s work, and skipped out on fast food to eat a decent meal, you’re doing something right. And of course, there’s always ice cream for dinner whenever you want—you call the shots here.

Money Adulting

Oh yeah, money. That green stuff that lets you pay rent and eat food. The root of what it means to grow up. What you took for granted in your blissfully unaware youth and now can’t stop thinking about. If you pay your own bills and cover your own dinner check (thank you very much), you’re living and breathing the world of money adulting.

Washington, Massachusetts, and Maryland all fall in the top ten states with the highest median income, and New York is home to the stock exchange, so it makes sense that all these states are tweeting about money.

Home Adulting

“Home Adulting” covers everything from dishes and housework to getting the mail (and actually reading it), buying or selling a home, moving, meal prepping, hosting a holiday dinner, using coupons, Googling “best plumber near me,” agonizing over which laundry detergent is best, and doing all the household chores you dreaded as a kid yourself. If you own or live in a home, you are by definition adulting. 

Vermont has the fifth highest rate of homeownership in the US at 71.6%. Props to you, Vermont. You’re clearly adulting better than most. 

Leisure Adulting

Adulting wouldn’t be complete without the opposite end of the work spectrum, which is leisure. For those of us lucky to experience it, all those 9-5 days and business meetings and long commutes add up to one thing: vacation. Take the cruise. Get the tan. Eat that five course meal. Blow all your money in Vegas. But be sure you tweet about it—if you’re not making everyone else jealous, you’re doing it wrong. 

Health Adulting

Hawaii is the only state to tweet about health more than any other category. They have an obesity rate of 23.8%, an uninsured rate of 5.5%, and 2,138 per 100k hospital admissions are preventable, which are all less than the national average. In other words: Hawaiians are winning at life.

Considering Hawaiians already live where most of us vacation, we’ll give them a free pass for beating the system. Meanwhile, the rest of us are just trying to show up, juggle meetings, and stand up every few hours. It’s called balance.


We collected around 44,000 tweets that contained “#adulting” or “adulting,” then created categories based on common themes. Just over 5,000 of these tweets were geo-tagged, and we used those to look at differences between states and regions. Here’s a breakdown of the most common themes we found within each category:

  • Money: money, bill, pay, expensive, cost, buy, cash, debt, financial, budget, bank savings
  • Food: food, cook, grocery, eat, breakfast, lunch, dinner, hungry, wine, beer, water
  • Work: work, job, coworker, interview, commute(ing), office, business
  • Car: car, oil, drive, gas
  • Home: home, laundry, clean, dishes, bathroom, yard, house, apartment, rent, mortgage
  • Health: health, doctor, insurance, medical, sick, medience, hospital, sleep, anxiety, exercise, active, dentist, therapist
  • Leisure: friend, social, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, stream, leisure, game, podcast, TV, Netflix, Hulu, show, movie, party, episode, Spotify, music
  • Family: family, kid, marriage, mom, dad, brother, sister, child, baby, husband, wife, partner, spouse, parent

Most common topic by state:

South CarolinaCar
New JerseyCar
West VirginiaFamily
North CarolinaFood
Rhode IslandFood
New MexicoHome
New HampshireLeisure
District of ColumbiaLeisure
North DakotaLeisure
New YorkMoney
South DakotaMoney

If you’re not tweeting about your problems, are you even adulting? Use AT&T Internet for a fast, reliable connection, so you can complain all day, every day, without interruption.

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