Friday, June 05, 2009

Streaks of immaturity

-By Swetha Amit
What began as a casual conversation ended up as one that instigated thought provoking questions within me. After the exchange of the usual pleasantries and polite inquiries, the topic somehow took a turn that delved deep into the human psyche. Being a Psychologist, human behaviour, thoughts, actions, words uttered never fail to evoke fascination and curiosity. A few experiences narrated by those conversationalists made me realize how common such instances were and probably occurred in most people’s lives including mine.

One of them chose to narrate an incident in a social set up. Apparently amidst a group of friends, discussions taking place range from tongue in cheek remarks to intense ones which give rise to pertinent points of heated arguments. And if it is not ended amicably, it could result in a lot of resentment and bad blood, especially when unwarranted labelling happens. Such was the case with the person above.

Things apparently got out of hand when a sensitive topic was discussed to which this person decided to end it with a certain amount of assertiveness. To which the reaction was labelled as being impish and needed a lot of ‘growing up’. Yet strangely after a few weeks, the same man who labelled him as reactive behaved in a similar manner in another scenario as a pretext of being assertive. What puzzled my friend was the fact of why such behaviour was termed immature when the same individuals ended up doing the same thing at a later stage. And yet they seem to think their act was anything but childish.

Another instance narrated to me took place in a household set up. A file consisting of important documents was misplaced due to which my second friend obviously exhibited signs of being flustered. The feeling was understandable as those were official papers and she was answerable to her boss. To which her parents remarked stating she was acting like a seven year old instead of empathising or helping her search for the file. After a month or so, when her father faced a similar situation and she remarked the same, he retorted stating that it was important enough to cost him his job.

The above two instances no doubt occurs among millions around the world. Such can evoke amusement or exasperation. It is strange to note how people who call others ‘immature’ or ask them to ‘grow up’ are actually the ones who behave in the same way. While certain reactions during tense moments are humane, why label others when we aren’t perfect ourselves? Why sound hypocritical and double standard while doing such things? Why make somebody feel miserable when you commit a similar sort of behaviour in front of them at a later stage?

Nevertheless it made me wonder why people indulge in such things. Is it a case of being able to advice others and not follow it yourself? Or sort of recognizing your own similar shortcoming at a sub conscious level and displacing it on to others as an ego satisfaction? Or merely being an unwarranted critic? Strange are the ways of human behavioral dynamics. Perhaps this is what makes Psychology interesting yet mystifying at the same time.

Written for www.msn.co.in

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10 Comments:

Blogger KParthasarathi said...

It is an universal characteristic.We have two standards, one to judge others and the other for ourselves.The glass is always tinted in our favour.

12:36 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Unfortunately thats true.*Sigh*

9:31 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Comments on MSN:
FCA Prashant Chavan - Mumbai on 6/11/2009 7:57:11 PM
Dear Swetha, all that you have written is summed up in the saying : "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Man grows more selfish and stubborn as he grows. That's normal human psychology. I have rated two stars for your article. Readers can reach me in Mumbai with their comments and views at prashant.pscl07@gmail.com

2:00 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Albert - Bangalore on 6/12/2009 12:31:44 AM
Hai Swetha, nice article, its like a reflection of our actions in the form of thoughts. Sometimes while criticins others we forget that the same actions might be repeated by us but still we end up criticising others but that is what humans all about. When others do wrong we need justice but when we do wrong we need forgiveness..

2:00 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Ankitha - Hyderabad on 6/12/2009 10:27:08 AM
Swetha , this article is good , and this is the area where in our daily life everybody will face or come across these kind of situations in one way or the other .You article made others to realize when they come across these kinds of situatins and atleast change their behaviour .

2:00 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Dr.Rao - Ahmadabad on 6/12/2009 12:37:17 PM
No two people or situations are alike, as much as we like them to be. One has to be successfully analyzed to take two contrarian opinions and be able to hold them at the same time without undue dysphoria. You probably are aware of this story : Two friends were arguing about some issue and as it happens, they were holding diametrically opposite views and found that they are hurtling towards a point of no return, which could ruin their friendship. Hence they decided to seek the advise of a wiseman. The man asked the first person to present his point of view and after listening carefully he said, " You seem to be right about what you say." He then proceeded to ask the second person to present his side of the issue. Having heard him and thoughtfully deliberating , he said "You know you are right too in what you say." This obviously infuriated both men and they angrily queried, "How can both of us be right?" And the wiseman replied "That also is a valid question!" So. Swethaji , "Just keep in mind, that there are no absolutes in life.'' And before words, there is thought.

2:01 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

S.Mariadas - Mumbai on 6/12/2009 12:42:31 PM
Psychology interesting yet mystifying! No. It is not psychology but human behaviour is interesting and mystifying. Psychology which studies human behaviour recognises as interesting and mystifying. Human beings never reveal 100% to others. Lots of inhibitions, fears, ego conflicts, rich-poor divide, convictions, contentions, religio-political leanings, health, complexes put a lot of masks or covers. One is not the real, one looks like. One cannot be trusted merely by the words. A person visiting Mumbai felt that the people in Mumbai are much backward and need to improve. He is a doctor in his subject, but he is looking at things and people with a 'personal view finder'. He has already made a jugdement in his mind and all those he comes into contact with fit into his mindset, he is not able to go out of his 'boundary' and look at them from their point of view and judge from their platform. Human behaviour has always been mystifying to me. A person says something but means something else. Another person holds on to his own views and blames all others(weak ones) for his own failures. When will human beings learn to accept others as they really are? When will human beings do what they say? Many a time, such people need the help of doctors and pschologists to correct their behaviour. They build castles in the air and psychologists collect the rent!

2:01 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

JITENDRA MOHAN - CHANDIGARH on 6/11/2009 6:47:02 PM
WORD MEANS A WORLD-BRHAM!! FULL OF MEANING,INSPIRATION AND SOME TIMES HURTING. FOR A PSYCHOLGIST EACH NUANCE,GIMMICK,MOVEMENT,INVOLUNTARY RESPONSE AND OFCOURSe WORD MAKES A DIFFERENCE.IT EXPRESSES THE HIDDEN AGENDA AND SOME TIMES COLLECTIVE PILE UP OF HISTORY AND HERITAGE.PLEASE USE IT WITH CARE.WORD STANDS FOR LEARNING,UNCONSCIOUS--CONSCIOUS,CULTURE AND ABOVE ALL IT HAS ITS INDIVIDUALITY,CONTINUITY AND SYMBOLIC SPIRITUALITY.

2:01 AM  
Blogger A New Beginning said...

Yours is a very educative blog. One gets to learn a lot. Thanks for the great insight into life!
Best

8:40 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Thanks a lot!! Do keep visiting!!

11:52 PM  

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