It's very interesting to note that people walk around all the time looking like they are all grown up but this is actually a disguise. The truth is some parts of them are VERY grown up and some parts of them are stuck in patterns of reactivity and dysfunction.
And that is because they are a work-in-progress...the stamping ground of earth school...and EV-ER-Y-BOD-Y goes through this challenge.
And it is very important for us to remember this fact because if we don't, we can get soooooo annoyed with people's behavior wondering why they don't have their act together or why their reaction feels so off the charts.
If we hold them accountable as if they were "all grown up", we can get pretty perturbed. BUT, if we remember that they are trying to "grow into their calm, mature self" but are struggling with the weight of some damage, confusion or pain, it is much easier to view their behavior as the spirit of a child trying to make sense of the world...still developing his sea legs...still bewildered by what feels like judgment...unable to see the bigger picture...awkwardly expressing himself in the best way he knows how.
And, when we are interacting with him in these moments, if we can extend to him the patience, understanding and affirmation we would so readily give to a child who is trying to learn something...we can help him on his journey. And we can help ourselves, too, for whenever we act from support and compassion, we bring peace to ourselves.
There is also the VERY IMPORTANT FACT that we, too, experience our own "little child" moments when we are struggling and are sometimes not so much fun to be around. We can also benefit greatly from someone's loving support.
Let's all try to visualize the child in each of us who is struggling to make sense of the world and to learn to interact with others in a responsible, loving manner. This seems like a most direct way to enhance our mutual peace and personal growth.
image from micheleborba.com.