You Are an Adult Yet You Think and Act Like a Teenager

Paul of Tarsus wrote to his audience in Corinth, “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.1 Normalcy behooves us to grow up, not just physically, but more so with regards to our thinking and our emotions.

One peculiar attitude among humans with regards to growing up is that , in childhood they want to fast-track their growth; but once they reach their teens, they would rather stay in such period, so they become stuck with teenage mentality even if they are adults already.

Indeed, some of us stagnate and stop growing up mentally and emotionally. The thought of being a teenager again sounds so fantastic that some people would unwittingly wish it to be so by practicing behaviors only teenagers are known to be doing.

The level of our maturity depends on our unique experiences coupled with the people who had influenced us throughout our days here on Earth. The thing is - behaving like a teenager, even if you are way past such period, is likely a product of your choice.

1. You want to be understood but you do not even try to understand others

One common attitude among teens is that they think, feel, and act as if the world centers around them. Not “them” collectively, but individually… In other words, the teenage ME is the star of MY own movie and all the others are either supporting actors or the movie goers - so enjoy MY show whatever it is I am doing.

We all need the understanding of our fellow man (or woman). Given that statement, doesn’t it mean that it is not only you who need to be understood? Remember the golden rule, “Treat people the same way you want them to treat you,2 and take it to heart.

2. You have no control of your time

Which do you value more, money or time? Come to think of it - when money is spent, you can earn it again (maybe even more than what was spent); however, once time is lost, you cannot bring it back. Besides, time can be converted into money if you work on it properly.

So do you still spend your days like there is no tomorrow or like you are going to live forever? How fun it is to party all night and sleep all day. Maybe family time is a misnomer to you, and you justify not having one by insisting that quality time is better than the quantity of time. No, dear Reader, when it comes to family, more time with them is what quality time means.


You do not need to be a time traveler to control time. All you need to do is spend it on the right investment. If you take time for granted, then you let it control you.

3. Expressing yourself is of primary importance and being ignored is so hurtful to you

Being a teenager is the period of growing up when you mostly discover your talents. It is when most of your passions in life take root (some people are late bloomers, though, which is still good but I will tackle such topic later, on a separate venue).

Since you are beginning to see your talents bloom, it is quite but normal to express yourself by showing how good you are in a certain field. Again, this attitude is OK for teenagers as they see themselves as the center of universe (refer to list #1 above). Teenagers are often sensitive about this, and if you ignore them, they will likely take offense at it.

However, if you are already a grown up, and you have this knack to talk more about yourself and boast about your exploits, while getting sensitive if you are not noticed or you see someone who has greater feats than yours, then it may be a mark of some kind of insecurity. This attitude is something you need to get over with, as this will cause you to feel doleful inside which may eventually lead to annoyingly arrogant behaviors.

4. Strong emotions are your best gauge for making decisions

I remember a mentor of mine who said, “Do not make decisions when you are extremely sad, angry, or happy. You will likely regret it afterwards.” My own experience and my observations of other people confirm the veracity of such advice. Strong emotions can indeed cloud your judgement.

Younglings have a hard time following this wisdom. Well, they are kids and they have yet to learn it. Children will just react on what emotion they are feeling at the moment. That is the reason why they need their parents or guardians to guide them, lest they in turn harm themselves.

So if you are a grownup, it is unlikely that you have another adult to watch you around. Well, of course friends and loved ones will be there to accompany you, but I doubt if you would like people watching over your shoulder and nagging you every time you do something.


Emotions are good; they are part of your human nature. They allow you to enjoy the company of people, avoid things that may hurt you, and savor life in general. The thing is, your emotions are not the master - you are.

Also, you are not the center of the universe. Yes, you are important - your uniqueness as a person makes it so - but try your best not to act like everyone should adapt to you. Each one of us are playing his/her part to make this world a better place to live in.

Text credits:

[1] 1st Corinthians 13:11 (English Standard Version)

[2] Matthew 7:12 (New American Standard Bible)

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