The "real world" is a dreaded phrase for just about anyone in their 20s. It consists of all the things your parents discussed during those adults-only conversations around the kitchen table — usually including words like "bills," "investments," or "benefits" — while you innocently tried to sneak in for a snack.
Now the real world is here, and let me guess, you're feeling scared, worried, excited, alone, and probably every other emotion under the sun, right? Yeah, I get it. We've all been there, but the difference between entering the real world now versus a few years ago is that now you have the Realworld app to rely on, which is basically a sidekick that'll help you through adulthood.
Realworld has the answers to all the questions, and we mean all of them. POPSUGAR recently spoke with founder Genevieve Ryan Bellaire, who said the idea came when she graduated from college and realized pretty quickly that she "was educated but unprepared for life as an adult." And she knew she wasn't alone, as her friends and siblings all felt the same. "No one is prepared for life," she said. Because young people aren't taught many of the real-world basics in an academic environment, Genevieve acknowledged that this lack of education can cause "real problems with real consequences." Enter: Realworld. Adulthood, simplified. But what is it exactly, and how does it work?
1. A Hub For It All
There are five major topics on Realworld: finance, healthcare, work, government, and life. With a total of 77 "playbooks," subtopics range from life insurance, opening a Roth IRA, credit-score information, employee paperwork, voting registration, taxes, renting, you name it. There are step-by-step instructions with additional resources on all of these topics, with videos launching soon.
Because there was such a need for this, Genevieve decided to leave her job and become an expert on what she calls "real-world entry." The information on the app has come from thousands of interviews with employers, SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), people in their 20s, college students, and more. The app is personalized too, designed to help you make decisions about life's big moments. Realworld is powered by a diverse team of lawyers, strategists, graphic designers, educators, writers, and many more to help ease your transition to adulthood.
2. How to Use It
To get started, register on the app's website, and from there you can access in-depth educational breakdowns (like about health insurance), quick tools (like example forms), and the Realworld community. While the website is free, Realworld offers a three-and-a-half-hour Real World Ready course for $50 that covers a variety of basics. The playbooks are step-by-step guides with actual links and resources to do things like open a credit card or enroll in a 401(k). You get your first three playbooks for free, but will need to pay after that. The best part is that the lessons on the app are short. You can open various playbooks and jump around easily. Right now, people trying to navigate early adulthood are probably talking to their parents or doing frantic Google searches. In other words, not necessarily getting the best information they need that's definitely not being delivered in an easy way. "We are working with boring subject matter material, but our goal is to provide information that is friendly, accessible, and playful," Genevieve told POPSUGAR.
The other major perk: you don't have to tackle this all at once. Realworld isn't just a content site where there's articles; it's a sidekick for navigating adulthood for years to come. It's there to help you on your terms. While you may jump on because you just moved rentals and *do not* understand cashier's checks (me neither), chances are other small questions are going to pop up along the way, and you're going to need your trusted adulting buddy to help you through it.
3. A Built-In Community
Just like how you'd ask a friend for recommendations for restaurants or hair salons, you can tap into the Realworld community for things like good renter's insurance or the best side hustles. Genevieve explained that users love the accessibility: "When we hear back from users, they tell us that it's where it all comes together. The real world is so disaggregated, and there's not a place where it's tied up with a bow like Realworld is." With the community's support, you are able to get a sense of what's coming next. You can also see what peers with similar traits, like personal income or amount in loans, are doing, so you can track your progress with others like you.
4. An Ever-Evolving Platform
In addition to the current 77 playbooks, new ones are being released every month on new and relevant topics. "We grow with our users," Genevieve said. "We want to support you throughout your life." It's a living platform, designed from user testing and feedback to be constantly evolving. Oh, and Realworld's social media, which looks like a 1970s retro tee? That's on purpose, and Genevieve hinted that merchandise is coming!
"It's a platform built by people who are going through the experience you are going through," she said. "We are creating the platform we wish we had. Our team is super mission-based: make life in the real world simpler for people. Empower them to make smart choices and set them up for success."