How to "Grow up" and Become a Support for Yourself

How to "Grow up" and Become a Support for Yourself

. 4 min read

Sometimes we are faced with problems and difficulties that at first glance seem unsolvable. Close people, friends, and family come to help, but sometimes their advice and criticism only make things worse. Psychologists say that the most important resource of man is himself. If we can rely on ourselves, we can cope with any obstacles in life. How to nurture these supports and can you grow up psychologically?

What Does It Mean to Be Mature?

Adulthood is usually assessed by the following attributes: having a job, your own home, your own family, and children. There are other criteria: responsibility for themselves, independence in decision-making, and financial independence. Growing up is also the formation of certain brain structures. Today, scientists note an increase in the period of maturation of the brain: the frontal lobes, which are responsible for planning, forecasting, control, cause-effect analysis, strategic thinking, develop later.

Developmental Stages

Psychologists distinguish eight stages of development. According to this theory, a person approaches early maturity having passed through previous crises and having solved their important tasks at each stage. In a favorable scenario, trust in the world, autonomy, will, initiative, competence, and understanding of who he is and where he is going are formed. If the crises are not passed, we see in the person distrust, pessimism, dependence on others, shame, guilt, a sense of inferiority, and intolerance. Becoming internally more mature, people learn to establish close trusting relationships and to love each other. The next task of growing up is creative self-realization and concern for the future well-being of mankind.

The Problem of Infantilism

You often find adults who are personally immature, as if they specifically chose to remain such perpetual children. This is the "delayed adulthood syndrome." Among the causes of its emergence are social processes and changes in society, the institution of the family, and education.

While at the end of the last century first-graders returned from school on their own, did their homework, and could heat up their own soup, today they are accompanied by their mothers or nannies on their way home. They also help them solve examples, set the table, and then wash the dishes for the child. Activities and sections are often held right after lunch, not because some children study in the second shift, but on the assumption that there is always a non-working adult next to the school child who will bring him to class.

Recently, attitudes toward raising children have changed significantly: there is so much care for them that they need to grow up - that is, to take responsibility for their lives - has seemingly lost relevance. Why does it if there is always room for you in your parents' apartment, and they will give you money for a cafe? That is why today you can see situations when 20-year-old people are sitting in line at the doctor's office with their moms or dads. Or they go with them to get a job. "That's my mom. She came to see if I would sign the employment contract correctly." In psychology, there is even such a concept as a "psychological moratorium" - a delay in taking on adult duties and responsibilities, a postponement to prepare for real life.

Another variant of infantilism is the Peter Pan syndrome. Such people also don't want or cannot grow up. They have poorly developed will, self-control, and the ability to emotionally self-regulate. They are afraid of any obligations, they avoid responsibility. They are afraid to even place a real-money bet at a National Casino. Fortunately, growing up with such personalities is an achievable goal.

Signs of Maturity

  • The ability to be autonomous. This is the ability to create and realize one's own inner strength and rely on it.
  • The capacity for self-development, cognition, and learning.
  • Accept and love people holistically, with all their strengths and weaknesses.
  • Work and enjoy their activities, to see the meaning of it, to achieve high professionalism and competence.
  • Play. To be spontaneous, creative, free, to develop imagination,
  • Adequately cope with stress.
  • Set and achieve their goals, while maintaining adequate and stable self-esteem,
  • Ability to be humble and tolerant of what cannot be changed.

How to Build Your Inner Support

Seeking support means seeing your strengths and weaknesses, being able to focus on the strengths of your personality, finding them in past experiences, or creating and developing others. When we feel a lack of something, it is the active position, courage, and exploratory interest that allows us to approach the unknown, gain new experience, comprehend, appropriate, and build on it, even if it's uncomfortable at first. Thus external supports gradually become internal.

To feel your support, you can answer your questions:

  • Recall difficult stories in your life, difficult choices, and life crises. How did you cope?
  • Which of your supports are stable, like an unsinkable aircraft carrier, which are temporary, fragile, or lost? Which pillars are missing? Which ones are more external or internal?
  • How do you experience the loss of your support - betrayal, loss of respect, disappointment, letting go, growing up and separating your own children?
  • How do you experience loss of self-reliance or disappointment in yourself? How do you support yourself or, conversely, scold yourself?
  • In what ways do you already lean on others, and in what ways do you only want to lean?

How to Lean on Yourself

  • Not to compare yourself with others.
  • Explore your experiences, feel your true desires, and make friends with your true self.
  • Celebrate your real accomplishments.
  • To develop my autonomy.
  • Develop optimism and a positive outlook on life.
  • Create your own environment, and communicate with like-minded people. To feel part of something bigger is also a pillar.


Courtney Rehman

Part of the expertEasy editorial team, Courtney is from South Africa.

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