Mental Age vs Physical Age
“How old are you?”
Subconsciously, I think part of the reason I ask this question is to get a sense of their maturity level and to set my expectation. Yet, there’s a difference between mental age and physical age.
Physical age is how old you are.
Mental age is simply how old you are mentally.
For a previous internship, I thought my manager at the time was in his late twenties. He was poised, confident, and had a lot of experience. It turned out I was older than him. I was twenty and he was also twenty. But my birthday’s in April his in August. Physically, we were the basically the same age, but mentally, he was a lot older than me.
I contrast that with some of my peers in university, and I find that I’ll meet people that are the same physical age, but it seemed like they haven’t grown up.
I think this is part of the meaning of the word maturity. If someone says you’re mature, you’re mentally older than others of the same physical age. And vice versa if you’re immature.