It’s only recently that emotional maturity has been the focus of attention and this is great news. Emotional immaturity has been the cause of so much distress in our lives and relationships and now we are learning to do better.
The operative word is learning!
Check out some of the indicators of emotional maturity and emotional immaturity to see where there could be emotional immaturity sneaking around causing some underlying stress.
What is Emotional Maturity
“Emotional maturity means having the self-control to manage your emotions and work to understand them.” (Eatough, Erin. “Connect with your emotions: how to improve emotional maturity”. betterup.com. November, 25, 2022. www.betterup.com/blog/how-to-be-emotionally-mature)
If someone is emotionally mature then they recognize that feelings and emotions are important and nothing to be ashamed of or ignore; and they don’t think it makes them a weak person to acknowledge this.
For most people this doesn’t come naturally and it takes some work to get to a point where this perspective is the norm. It can be a process, and that’s okay. This is common for most self-improvement journeys and with age and experience it can become a little easier, but anyone at any age can take steps towards, and be successful at, becoming more emotionally mature if they put in the effort.
What is Emotional Immaturity
“Emotional immaturity is a person’s inability to express or cope with emotions that are serious in nature. People who are emotionally immature may also overreact to situations or have trouble controlling their emotions.” (Bottaro, Angelica. “Warning Signs of Emotional Immaturity”. verwellhealth.com. March, 25, 2022. www.verywellhealth.com/emotional-immaturity-warning-signs)
People who are emotionally immature usually have trouble connecting with others. It will present in a variety of ways such as how they think, their behaviors and the way they communicate with others.
They may go from 0-100 on an emotional scale very quickly. If things don’t go their way they may react impulsively and end up saying or doing something hurtful. Or they may hide their emotions because they struggle to express them altogether.
How Emotional Maturity Shows up vs. Emotional Immaturity
Developing emotional maturity will have a positive effect on you in your everyday life, here’s how you will see it show up:
- You will be able to talk things through with people when there is a conflict instead of being defensive or just avoiding them.
- You will take responsibility when you mess up instead of blaming someone else or trying to make excuses.
- You will be more patient with others or with situations when something goes wrong instead of lashing out or losing your temper.
How to Become More Emotionally Mature
Dr. Nicole LePera (@the.holistic.psychologist) shares some steps on how to become more emotionally mature and she emphasizes that people can develop emotional maturity at any age. Here are a few:
- Clearly community your boundaries to people you are close to.
- Learn to pause before you react
- Learn to deal with disappointment
- Learn to meet your needs
- Let people have their reactions
When it comes to emotional maturity a lot of it centers around being comfortable with and secure with yourself. This can take time so you shouldn’t expect it to happen overnight.
It also means taking responsibility for your thoughts, behaviors and actions, learning and growing through them and committing to moving towards a more growth oriented outlook.
If you find yourself getting easily upset, overly angry, or lashing out at others when things don’t go your way or you are disappointed, then it might be time to focus on taking your emotional maturity to the next level. It will take time but with intentional practice you can move into a more constructive, mature place with your emotions.
If you feel like you need help with this contact us, we are here to help!