Maturity!

My friend Vijay and I always exchange notes on what we have read from Sunday newspapers. Our favorite paper being Times of India (minus its political coverage). Both of us have been reading Times since sixties. Vijay asked me if I have read a blog by Vinita Dawra Nangia, from “O Zone” titled “What Does It Mean to be Mature”. I am giving the link for the same below.

(http://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/O-zone/what-does-it-mean-to-be-mature/

As the luck would have it I was reading the same. I jokingly replied to Vijay that to become mature one should become Admin of a WhatsApp group. Ours is a group oldies from COEP, Pune who became engineers in 1971. We are a crowd of reasonably successful engineers and have done varied things in life. From a group of 400 at least 10% are active and balance are partially active to passive! We are on this group, I have secretly named our group as Cartoon Network. On this groups we have friends from various levels of maturity. Some are extremely mature and some have remained “a”mature! (Amateur!!)

My take on maturity is

A person who has self-belief so strong that he/she can accept his/her own mistakes, if required openly, is open to different view point of others, willing to accept totally new viewpoint or direction, and still show as if he/she was saying the same thing though something opposite was being agreed!

I will try to explain my definition in small segments.

Owning a mistake

This is the biggest and the strongest trait of maturity. We all make mistakes in our lives and upto an extent we keep on justifying them. Justifying till proven as a mistake, (innocent till proven guilty) is also maturity of owning what you said or did! But at some stage when we know that it is a mistake, the individual is mature and magnanimous enough to accept it openly. By openly accepting error is to show your acceptance to your friends and colleagues, who may also follow example set by you, for betterment of whatever we are doing.

Being open to a different viewpoints

GOD has given us a brain that really has no limits. We humans will have totally different views upto 360 degrees on the same subject. In cricketing parlance we know that a batsman will be bold, caught out, LBW and what have you on a specific ball. But a Sachin Tendulkar will hit the same ball for a six at Cover and yes Virat Kohli now will hit for a six over mid-wicket! If we keep on arguing that such and such ball should be played carefully, is not using your brain fully. By remaining in your own cocoon one’s growth may get stunted. The mature person will always have mature ideas but is mature enough to embrace someone else’s better ideas with open arms.

After embracing new idea take it forward with same zeal as your own thoughts

Maturity of a person is seen when he/she takes forward new idea brought forward by someone else as if it’s his/her own idea. In short the individual is a total team player! This situation does come up on a daily basis from the smallest of issues, like which Ice cream to eat, to which generator should be purchased for an organization. Once a consensus is reached mature person will not even show that there were different opinions. In an organization, a society or even in the family an individual cannot have his own agenda. The individual agenda can cause disharmony and discontent.

There are various ways of looking at maturity. Some say that with age people become mature but it is definitely not so. Age has nothing to do with maturity. Maturity can definitely be acquired but I feel that persons with a very big Ego can never become mature. This is obvious as it has been explained above. Let me share an experience from our WhatsApp group. One of our friends is a CEO of an organization. When there were discussions on the group, our friend would just not budge. He would stick to his view point, always. In fact he would not follow basic rules formed to run the group. His behavior we realized is a typical immaturity caused by a large size EGO. But we were all friends and obviously equals. We took a long time to bring him in line with others!

Friends let me know your thoughts on maturity and don’t worry I am matured and open enough to take your suggestions. I hope it shows my maturity!!

 I am also giving below some definitions of maturity shared by Vinita

  • “Maturity is not when we start speaking big things; it is when we start understanding small things.”
  • “I used to walk into a room full of people and wonder if they liked me… now I look around and wonder if I like them.”
  • “Maturity comes when you stop making excuses, and start making changes.”
  • “Maturity is the capacity to endure uncertainty.”
  • “Maturity begins when we are content to feel we’re right about something, without feeling the necessity to prove someone else is wrong.”

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EQ IQ or Both!!

I read a story about a person having a meal in a restaurant. He saw two poor kids hanging around outside the restaurant. He called them inside and requested them to sit with him for some food. They had their food and then the person asked for his bill. He received the bill. He was shocked to see the bill amount Zero! On the bill it was written that our billing system is not equipped to create a bill for humanity! The owner of the restaurant had seen the event and this was his reaction!

Wow! What a gesture! Not from one person but from two persons. The guest wanted to pay for the food eaten by the two kids also but the owner went one step further. How did this happen? Why did this happen? This brings me back to my favourite subject, human nature. How does a human react to a situation? Why different people react differently to same situation? How does our mind or nature mold since our birth? There are various factors that surround you when you grow. We have no control over which family we are born into. Family DNA helps to mold but we see enough examples of siblings who are totally opposite. How much is family DNA important?

Is it the circumstances through which we make our journey? Is it some special incident in your life that makes you the way you are? It could be series of events and incidents that can mold you. I know of siblings with very similar paths in their career. They ended up working as Directors with large organizations. Enough international travel and stay, sufficient exposure to foreign culture, high education, probably equally high IQ’s! But the difference in two siblings in certain aspects of life is unbelievable. Does EQ (Emotional quotient) come into play? Possibly a person’s behaviour Q= (IQ+EQ)/2! But is the equation correct? Is it really divided by two? What is important IQ or EQ? What is more important and by how much? My experience tells me that weightage of IQ to EQ is 3 to 7!

In the passage of our lives, we see so many different things. There can be difference in opinion about what is good and what is bad or what is correct. But according to me the story of two kids, I narrated above, can be only be classified as good, there are no two opinions about it. When I compare two siblings, I am talking about such “absolute” good things and not the disputable ones. In such absolute incidents their behavior can be diametrically opposite. All of us see various things in life but how much open are we to absorb the events that we see or observe. Are we the real sponge material? Spongy persons absorb as many things as possible from life experiences and their “computer system” retrieves right things at the right time. Non spongy persons are not open minded and though everybody sees the same things, these people absorb only the things that they want. Spongy people will store the data about things that are opposite to their thought process too. They just keep on absorbing irrespective of the fact that they may not agree on some issues. So when a situation arises, where they need to change their thinking, they can do it. The data is already stored with them. Their mind will analyze situation, applying two diametrically opposite thoughts and may be change 100% or 70% or 30% in their thinking, depending on requirement of the situation. But non spongy persons will never change their mind as they have not stored data for opposite thought process. Can these people said to be adamant? आडमुठा in Marathi. Some may claim that they “stick” to their principles but life is all about being adaptable.

Coming to IQ/EQ discussion, consider Sachin Tendulkar& Vinod Kambli. They started their cricketing careers at the same time. Their initial milestones were also reached at the same time. In fact in the beginning Vinod was supposed to be a bit ahead of Sachin! After 4/ 5 years of international career things started changing. I am sure both of them had very similar cricketing IQ but end results say that their EQ was vastly different. Vinod was nowhere near Sachin in EQ. Vinod found it very difficult to handle career hiccups. Sachin also had some hiccups but with his superior EQ he managed to overcome the difficulties and rest as they say is history! Why Sachin’s EQ was better than Vinod’s? Is it family background? Is the overall atmosphere in his life? What was it that made Sachin reach the pinnacle of cricketing history? There are many things that formulate a persona, ultimate result of life can be measured in terms of IQ & EQ. So the IQ+EQ theory holds good!

Take another case of brilliant scientists Edison and Tesla. Both had very similar IQ but were so much different in their EQ! Edison had a bad streak in him that caused him to make many attempts to destroy Tesla’s career. But what was the end result, Edison became a moneyed man whereas Tesla did not make much progress on this front. Both had many inventions in their names, but Tesla gained the popularity as a better person. What is the definition of a successful person? Is it the one who makes lot of money? Or is it the one who gets better name.

In case of Sachin and Edison, one with very good EQ and the other with not so good EQ both had commercial success. In case of Sachin he earned a great name too! People respect him for his humility. Edison did not earn a name as a good person. But if we go back to siblings discussed above, their case is similar to Sachin and Edison! That brings me back to same question has DNA no effect on final outcome! Friends decide your take!