Emotional adulthood. I first encountered this term while forging my way through a divorce...of sorts. I had a disagreement, well, it was more of an epiphany, a realization that I didn’t want to be treated poorly anymore by a person with whom I had become close. When I stood up for myself, it caused a great deal of acrimony and I was ultimately dismissed from this person’s life. Rather than move on, all I could do was fret over the loss of the relationship and obsess over the accusations that this individual made. I immediately began to defend myself; I needed to be vindicated. I felt compelled to make this person understand that I was not the bad guy. I couldn’t break out of the negative emotions. I was drowning.
I needed help, so I turned to a close friend. She reminded me that my happiness is not meant to be manipulated by external forces, and that I am in charge. She gave me the contact information for a life coach and I made an appointment. My coach reaffirmed that I did not have to be pushed around by this person. I realized that I had let myself become subservient to an emotional tyrant who used guilt and manipulation to control me. Meeting with a life coach was the catalyst that I needed to take control of my life again.
Back to emotional adulthood… I digressed a bit, but I wanted to give some more context for this term. It’s a bit of a trendy term for sure, and I am not typically a fan of trendy terms and buzzwords; however, this one is clear and on-point, so I give it a pass. Practicing emotional adulthood simply means accepting responsibility for your own thoughts and emotions. Outside of emotional adulthood, it's easy to blame others for MAKING you feel hurt. Somewhere in the competition of finger pointing, a power shift takes place, and sometimes people are wounded. When you practice emotional adulthood, YOU are in control of how the negativity of others affects you. You keep your power and your emotional health. You are in charge, and there is no feeling that is more liberating.
Overcoming inertia is the hardest part of this process. My husband tells his students that the most difficult sentence to write is the first one, and that statement rings true with regard to emotional adulthood as well. Changing your approach to your feelings takes a great deal of strength and courage, and a good life coach can help guide you through this high and rocky pass. A life coach will help you affirm the positive choices that you are making, and they will also provide an objective point of view that is impossible to obtain on your own. Choosing to meet with a life coach is an investment in your future happiness. No matter where your journey takes you, I wish you grace and peace! Just remember: no matter how hard that first sentence is to write, YOU are the one holding the pen.
Peace on your path,