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On Adulthood

by Adam on April 5th, 2010

Casillero del Diablo Wine BottleAs we age, we age. Our minds, bodies, habits, likes, dislikes, and maturity all change from day to day. Each changes in different ways and at different rates depending on various factors. If we do crosswords and puzzles our minds stay sharp. If we do yoga and play hockey our bodies stay strong. If we use our will power our habits don’t take control. If we experience the world our likes and dislikes become clear.

Maturity, however, is the topic at hand. It is a curious aspect of our natures that seems to mainly depend on our actions and mannerisms with respect to the current trends in social behaviour. If I say things like “yo” and “hella” my maturity decreases whereas saying “tannins” and “Roquefort” pushes it the opposite direction. With practice, a person could easily modify their maturity level to match their audience. The natural maturity level, however, is how a person acts when they let go and be themselves.

One major factor that affects your natural maturity level is the company you keep. As time goes by you tend to subconsciously integrate the random behaviour of those around you and parrot it later on. For myself, a majority of those I work with are younger. I am often torn between being the “cool” boss who can speak their language and being the respectable authority figure. It is a fine line which I hope that I do a good job walking but who knows, perhaps not.

Super Mario Bros 1-UP MushroomWith adulthood comes more and more pressure from society to “mature”. Buy a car, buy a house (with a big mortgage), furnish the house, buy a second car, upgrade the house, upgrade the furniture, etc. Personally I’m at the beginning stages: one car, first home, and just starting to like red wine. There will always be a kid inside and occasionally I make concessions for him. Recently I bought myself a 1-UP mushroom which now occupies a prominent spot on my desk beside a stuffed monkey and a Lego helicopter.

Is my theory actually true or just a correlation of my fledgling maturity with my team of co-ops? I’d be interested to hear anecdotes from others on their own maturity level and environment. Do kids increase or decrease it? Only time will tell where I end up on the maturity scale, but for now I really enjoy working with a great group of co-op students

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  1. Maturity is absolutely dictated by factors external to you: the people you spend time with, the TV shows you watch, the music you listen to, and so on. Maturity has absolutely nothing to do with age and everything to do with your environment. You adapt to the things around you–and the only way to change that is to change what’s around you!

    I don’t think I made any sense there, but whatever. Yo, it’s hella cool. :-P

  2. One thing I find very intriguing: There isn’t always a positive correlation between someone’s rank/position in an organization and their maturity level. I’ve met a surprising number of folks who are shockingly immature — even though one would expect that they would have had to exhibit extraordinary maturity to rise to their position.

    In comparison, I have been pleasantly surprised by the high level of maturity of the last three co-op students I have hired at uWaterloo.

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