15 things emotionally mature people never waste their energy on

Emotionally mature people know what’s up. 

They don’t waste time on useless drama or trying to fix things that are out of their control. 

The secret of those who have a handle on their emotions isn’t that they’re perfect. We all have ground to cover. Their secret, instead, is that they conserve their attention and energy for what matters. 

They just don’t waste energy on what doesn’t matter. And in the end that makes all the difference. 

Here’s how to learn from the most emotionally mature people and how they dodge the unnecessary drama. 

1) Judging the emotions of others

It is clearly true that people sometimes have emotional reactions that are way out of proportion. 

But emotionally mature people do not waste their time judging this. 

While they may avoid spending time with someone or interacting too much with a person who is flipping out or being highly toxic, they do not go into deep analysis or extended judgment about it. 

Emotionally mature folks know that everyone has times when they get carried away, and they try their best to leave their judgment out of that.

2) Judging their own emotions 

Emotionally mature people also do their best to not judge their own feelings. 

Emotions are not necessarily our choice, and it is more what we do about them that is our choice. 

For that reason, if they feel depressed or angry, the emotionally mature person focuses on what to do rather than on whether or not they’re feeling is justified, proportional, or “reasonable.”

Emotions come and go, and their meaningfulness may vary, but emotionally mature people do their best to respect their own emotions as part of the process.

3) Needlessly criticizing others

Constructive criticism has a purpose and can be genuinely helpful. 

But apart from that, emotionally mature people tend to avoid criticism of others

They know that there is more than enough they have to work on in their own life and character. 

Focusing on the defects and shortcomings of others is exhausting and it is also counterproductive. 

There will always be something to criticize in others, but they know that if they spend too much time on this there will be no time left to live their own life and focus on their own areas where they wish to improve. 

4) Unnecessary arguing and fighting

People who have their emotions under control avoid fighting and arguing whenever possible.

 They are willing to stand up for themselves and those they care about, but they can immediately spot an argument or conflict that is not necessary. 

When they do see an optional interaction that is just going to drag them into a cesspool of negativity and toxic resentment, they walk away from that. 

Whether it is online or offline, emotionally mature individuals have no desire to spend their time and energy duking it out with people who are looking for a fight. 

It won’t go anywhere.

5) Feeling superior or inferior to others

Emotionally mature people resist feeling superior or inferior. 

They have reached a state of development where they see that black and white judgments about their own value or those of other people are unhelpful and immature. 

While they are honest enough to admit that people are better or worse at certain skills or have different attributes that may be more or less attractive, the idea that they or anyone else is overall superior or overall inferior is no longer of much interest to them. 

Everybody is different and some people are better or worse in many different respects rather than across the board. That’s just the way life is.

6) Indulging jealousy and schadenfreude 

This ties into the previous point, because emotionally mature people do not bother indulging their feelings of jealousy. 

Like anybody else they may have such feelings, especially if they see people enjoying or obtaining things which they wish to have but are unable to. 

However they do not choose to go down that rabbit hole. If they feel jealous they try their best to channel that feeling into action for self-improvement instead of clinging to resentment.

The same goes for schadenfreude or joy at the misfortune of others. If they are feeling this, emotionally mature people try to look at the root emotion behind it and what they can do about it (for example, maybe they feel excluded).

pic1913 15 things emotionally mature people never waste their energy on

7) Engaging in self-destructive behaviors

Self-destructive behaviors are something many of us engage in, particularly when we struggle with a sense of self-worth or our place in the world.

Emotionally mature people are very aware of their own self-destructive tendencies and things such as addictive behavior or toxic relationships. 

They consciously work on avoiding these things and on living a life where their self-destructive tendencies are held back and limited.

I’m not saying they don’t sneak a cigarette every now and then or flirt with somebody they shouldn’t. But they do their best to be aware of when they’re engaging in patterns that are ultimately going to hold them back.

8) Trying to control what’s out of their control

If there is one formula for a wasted life it is trying to control things that are out of our control. 

Emotionally mature people recognize that it is difficult to accept what is out of our control, but it is also the only option. 

As such, they channel all of their energy and time possible into what is in their control and do their best to maximize their effectiveness in their own domain of control.

9) Dwelling on past regrets and mistakes 

A major area that is out of everyone’s control is the past. 

The past is gone, and the main way in which it can be used, is to learn lessons about what to do in the present. 

Emotionally mature people try their best to learn from the past and appreciate what they can from it, but they do not dwell on it or live in the regrets from the past.

10) Seeking fame, approval and outer validation

People who have high self-awareness and emotional maturity are not attention seekers. 

They resist their own narcissistic impulses or aspects of their emotional reality that may be unstable or grasping. 

They don’t try to build a self off of validation and outer perception, but instead to center their sense of self inside their own being and their own actions and values.

11) Materialism, social status and possessions

Money is not ever going to buy happiness, but it certainly doesn’t hurt. 

Emotionally mature people understand that material possessions, status and financial well-being do matter, but at the same time these things will never replace inner well-being. As such, an emotionally mature individual will never put the cart before the horse, and while they may work very hard and care about having a comfortable and materially well off life, this well off life will never be a replacement for their own well-being or sense of self.

12) Pop culture fads and temporary trends

Pop culture fads and trends come and go. Not only is it exhausting to keep up with them, it is also quite imitative. 

Emotionally mature people choose to maintain their own framework and value system rather than just folding into whatever society or major media channels choose to offer at any particular time. 

They refrain from judging those who do follow trends, but when it comes to their own choice, they choose their own path. 

13) Spiritual narcissism and sleazy gurus

Spiritual narcissism is becoming more and more common.

It’s the phenomenon of people believing that raising their vibrations or learning more spiritual matters makes them “above” others.

Emotionally mature people do not engage in this.

They are interested in being authentic and in being honest even about difficult or egotistical emotions rather than denying they exist or acting like they are above others and “pure” in some superior way.

14) Trying to convince others of their beliefs

Emotionally mature folks are more than happy to talk about their beliefs and explain them. But they aren’t interested in convincing other people that their beliefs are correct.


Because they know that this usually backfires and is usually the hallmark of someone who is either:

  1. controlling and wanting to dominate others;
  2. insecure and needing to convince ultimately themselves that they’re right.

15) Holding grudges and getting revenge

Emotionally immature people don’t focus on getting revenge. 

While there may be things that need to be set right and fixed, their own emotional desire for payback is not a motivating factor in their actions. 

They don’t forget, but they do forgive. 

They do this for mainly rational reasons in the sense that they want to free up their energy and time to do productive things rather than to hold a grudge or be focused on the past.

Picture of Paul Brian

Paul Brian

Paul R. Brian is a freelance journalist and writer who has reported from around the world, focusing on religion, culture and geopolitics. Follow him on www.twitter.com/paulrbrian and visit his website at www.paulrbrian.com

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