Lesson of the Week
Mature: I am responsible, accountable, and conscientious
Physical growth is inevitable. But how do you mature and develop to be responsible, accountable, and conscientious?
You mature by living a responsible, accountable, and conscientious day-to-day, moment-to-moment life – taking small, sequential, logical, practical, sensible steps towards growing and ripening into a mature, settled, and developed person. “There’s a beauty to wisdom and experience that cannot be faked. It’s impossible to be mature without having lived,” stated Amy Grant, an American singer-songwriter. Be willing to be alive and patiently wait for and support each stage of maturity – not trying to force the process but letting each stage of growth unfold.
Take a tightly closed, new rose bud. Try to open it prematurely. Try to peel the bud open and make it look like a fully bloomed flower. This can’t be done without tearing and destroying the petals – and thus destroying the flower. The flower never matures. In order to properly bloom and mature, the flower has to be put in a nurturing environment and given the opportunity to unfold naturally. This is true of your maturing as well.
You develop maturity by practicing and exercising your innate, soulful identity, gifts, talents, and energy. You develop maturity by learning lessons, correcting mistakes, seeking excellence, and contributing ethically, honestly, and faithfully to completion of your mission. You and your mission are like the daisy pictured above – effortlessly, naturally maturing and growing from a seed to a mature blossom.
But what will that bloom (you and your mission) resemble at each developing, mature state. Richard Kaplan, an American network television producer, referred to the potential downside of maturity. “People mature with age and experience. I hope I more resemble a fine wine than a bad vinegar.”
A man was biting people in a nursing home. His nurse had been observing residents for years. She noted that some men watch football or play cards, while others bite people and yell. Factoring out brain injuries, she concluded that the healthy, mature older adults were those who continued throughout their lifetime to change in positive ways. She stated that old age seems to magnify people’s most practiced behaviors. Kind people grow kinder and mean people grow meaner. She suggested a maturing process that includes personality improvement and regeneration supporting one’s finest qualities.
Find your best qualities and practice and develop them. “To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly,” stated Henri Bergson a major first half of the twentieth century French philosopher. Create in your day opportunities to be responsible, accountable, and conscientious. Create room to endlessly be your best self – responsible to practice your good and best work. This is the work that enhances your well being and that of others. You are being called to be the best of what and who you are and to put this responsible, accountable, and conscientious mature effort into motion. Just as the flower starts as a seed and ultimately transforms into a beautiful bloom where it is planted, you will see yourself and your mission blooming into something mature wonderful.
“To grow mature is to separate more distinctly, to connect more closely.
- Hugo von Hofmannsthal, German Novelist, Opera Librettist for Richard Strauss
Activity: Flower Power
Materials: Pen, pencil or pen and colored pencils or markers
Time: Ten minutes to write and ten minutes for each person to discuss their ideas.
1. Name and describe a mission you would like to finish this week.
2. Think of a flower that represents this mission. The flower starts as a seed and grows into a bloom. If your mission were a flower, what stage of development would it be in? Draw a picture of this flower at this stage of development.
3. Draw a picture of the flower in full bloom. Next to the flower, write down what you will have to do for this mission to come to perfect bloom (completion).
4. Share your answers with the group, friend, or family member.
I am mature, so I can ....... We'd like to hear your story about being mature. Write your story below.