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What Being Emotionally Mature Looks Like in Your Life

It’s really easy to be reactionary with your family members. We have patterned ways of dealing with problems and with each other and breaking those patterns can be difficult. One of the problems the patterns provide us is that we get stuck not allowing ourselves or the relationship to mature emotionally into a healthier way of addressing issues. This podcast episode addresses what it looks like when you take responsibility for your own emotions and allow others to take responsibility for theirs. Essentially – you let yourself and others grow up emotionally. 

Podcast Transcript

You’re listening to Parenting Through the Detour, episode 31. What being emotionally mature looks like in your life.

Howard W. Hunter said, “Your detours and disappointments are the straight and narrow way back to Him.” And we know that men and women are that they might have joy. But when you get taken on a parenting detour, it feels like joy is something that other people get to feel. But not you. It doesn’t have to be this way. Join me on this podcast. And let’s find some joy through your detours. And I’ll give you some help along the way. I’m your host, Tina Gosney. And I’m a life and relationship coach, and a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Hey, friends, welcome back to this podcast. Today, the day this episode airs is January 13. You know what else happens on January 13. My relationship reset workshop begins registration closed a couple of days ago. And if you didn’t get in on that, I’m sorry, you can’t get in now that those doors are closed.

But I will have other workshops coming up this year. So if you are sad or regretful that you didn’t get to get in on this workshop, when the doors were open, make sure you go to my website, tinagosney.com and you’ll get on my email list. So that next time I have the doors open to a workshop, you will be sure to get the details and be able to get in on that. So to go up to my email list, you will want to click on the free training, not only will you get a free training, which is a PDF called Five Ways to feel better right now. But you’ll be added to that email list and you won’t miss the things that are coming up. And the time when registration for things like workshops and classes are open. So go to that link in the show notes and get on that email list today.

This episode isn’t going to be a really long one, it’s actually going to be kind of a short episode today. I started to think a couple of weeks ago, when my husband and I were watching a movie about the importance of this concept that I’m going to teach you today. emotional maturity. So we were watching a movie. And in this movie, there was a woman who was in an abusive marriage, her husband insisted that she say certain things to him so that he could feel better, or that she do certain things so that he would feel loved. And she was completely miserable. And obviously, from the way she was saying and doing the things that he was insisting that she say or do. She was not meaning anything behind them. She was simply doing them to not be abused. And it was so obvious in this movie that this husband, this abusive husband believed that his wife had the ability to control the way that he felt. And so he needed to control her so that he could feel good.

And many, many people act this way. And they don’t always do it as abusing someone else. But they do it in many, many other ways. Because if you believe that someone else has the ability to control the way that you feel, you will try to control that other person so that you can feel good. And there like I said, there are a lot of different ways that this happens. Abuse is one of them. Manipulation is another. But there are just many, many ways that you see people trying to control someone else, so that they can feel good because they think even subconsciously, they’re really not thinking this in a conscious way.

But they’re thinking that other person has the ability to control how they feel. So when you realize that you are the one that controls the way that you feel, and no one else even has the ability to do that, that it is all in your hands and not in anyone else’s. That is emotional maturity. So we grow up physically, and that is outwardly very apparent, but we’re not even really aware that we also need to grow up emotionally, and even what it looks like to be emotionally mature. Many of us remain in emotional immaturity for a great portion of our lives.

And as I talk about maturity and immaturity emotionally, it’s really, when we think that someone else has the power to control our emotions. That is emotional immaturity. And when we haven’t had that modeled for us from our parents, and our parents didn’t know this, this wasn’t really even wasn’t even common knowledge when most of our parents were raising us. So they didn’t know to do this, but they didn’t model for us how to grow up emotionally, and take responsibility for ourselves.

And so it just kind of perpetuates a cycle that keeps going unless somebody interrupts it. Think about some of the messages that you received as a child, like, Oh, if you eat your vegetables, you’re going to make mommy so happy, or you hurt his feelings, you need to go apologize. Or you even saw that when you did something that you thought was good, and you saw pleasure, and acceptance in your parents face, that you had the ability to make that happen. And when you did something that they didn’t like, when you said displeasure in their face, you thought you were the cause of that, that you were the one that caused them to not be happy. It’s actually not possible for you to do that. But we didn’t receive those messages as children.

So when we do not take full responsibility for our own emotional well being, we tend to hand it over to whomever is near, and we blame our emotions on them. Essentially, we put our emotional lives in the hands of someone else, and we expect them to take care of our emotions from us. And I have a news alert for you. Other people do a terrible job of taking care of our emotions for us. So knowing this, why would you want to outsource this job to someone else, it’s a terrible idea to give to just hand over your emotions on a silver platter to someone else and say here, I’m not taking care of this myself. So I need you to do it for me.

But the truth is, in order to really be able to help your family, to feel better yourself, and to connect with others in a healthy way, you need to be emotionally mature, and take responsibility for yourself. Okay, your thoughts, create your feelings. I’ve probably said that a million times on this podcast, which seems like a million. When we say it, just very bluntly, your thoughts create your feelings. So your thoughts might seem automatic, and like you have no control over them. But you do. Because your thoughts are like the ticker tape running across the screen of one of those 24 hour news channels, you know, or they just have the headlines going constantly on the bottom of the screen.

That’s what our brain does with thoughts. It just runs thoughts through our brain constantly, one after another all day long. And you get to decide which one of those thoughts you pick up. And you run with. Because there are many thoughts that are fleeting, and you don’t pick them up and run with them. And they just kind of are in and out. Just like that without even noticing that you decide to pick up a thought and to run with it. Which means you are in charge of your thoughts. And whatever thought you decide to pick up, it will create a feeling within you.

Because the thoughts that we think create feelings within our bodies, which means that nobody else is in charge of your feelings but you and you create your feelings with the thoughts that you choose to pick up and think one of the signs of emotional maturity is that you understand that you are now in charge of how you think and what you feel. And you recognize those feelings as they come. And you take a pause, kind of like an adult timeout, and you decide to respond to them intentionally instead of reacting instinctually. Another sign that you’ve reached emotional maturity is that you’ve stopped blaming people for how you feel. And you stop being a victim of other people and a victim of your circumstances.

So this is what it looks like. You begin doing things like recognizing that when you’ve had a part in a disagreement with someone else, that you apologize for your part, even if it’s only 5% You take responsibility for it without excuses and without blame. It looks like you recognizing that you have hurts from your past. And you don’t have to define yourself by those.

Also looks like you can listen to someone giving you advice. And just agree to disagree, without apologizing for not taking their advice. And without fighting them, and telling them all the ways that they’re wrong.

It looks like you feeling angry or disappointed with someone, and still feeling compassion for them at the same time. And you can also do that for yourself, you can be disappointed in yourself, and still find compassion for you, not beating yourself up, because you’re not perfect.

It looks like you knowing that a relationship is not good for you. And you decide to end it from a place of love for both you and from the other person.

It looks like you understanding why someone behaves the way that they do. Because they’re human. And you choose to love them anyway. And then you decide if that is a relationship that you want to keep in your life. Or if it’s time to say goodbye to that relationship.

It looks like you having a loving relationship with someone else and not agreeing on everything. And letting that be okay. It looks like you not saying whatever comes into your mind. And just leaving it to the other person to not being offended.

It looks like you showing responsibility for how you show up in the world. Even though that other person gets to choose whether or not they’re offended, you try your best to not give them a reason to. And if you do happen to offend, you take responsibility for it, not pushing that responsibility on to someone else.

Now, notice what I didn’t say, shows up in emotional maturity. And that was feeling happy all the time. Because emotional adults realize that the goal is not to be happy all the time. But it’s to take responsibility for yourself, and how you show up in the world. And you still feel all the emotions, that happy in the sad, the angry, that frustrated, the excited, the joyful, so many more emotions. You feel all of those, and you realize that you are the one who creates them. And you are the one that owns them. Nobody else has the ability to create them for you. Or to cause you to feel something without your permission.

So if you take something away from this podcast, take this away. being emotionally mature is possible when you stop. And notice that you’re feeling an emotion. You reflect you ask yourself how you can take care of your own emotions, without handing them over to someone else. And to realize that you are the one that created it with the way that you were thinking. This takes awareness, and it takes intention. And I told you this is going to be a short podcast and that is what I have for you today. It was a short one, but it’s a powerful one. And it is super important to realize what it means to be an emotional adult and be emotionally mature.

If you like what you’re hearing in this podcast, go to Apple podcasts, click on the podcast itself, not the episode, scroll down to the bottom and leave me a five star review. When you leave a review, it helps other people to find this podcast. So if you’re finding that the things that you’re hearing in this podcast are helping you help someone else to also find this podcast so we can spread this work to the people who really need it. And don’t forget to go to my website and sign up for my email list. Signal be sure to get notified the next time I’m doing a workshop. Have a great day.