CNLP 230: Pete Scazzero on Why So Many Successful Leaders Are Emotionally Immature, How to Tell Whether That’s You, and How to Become Emotionally Intelligent and Spiritually Mature

Pete Scazzero will be the first to tell you that while he was successful on the outside as a leader, he was immature on the inside, and his wife had had enough. That moved Pete on a journey to figure out what was wrong and how to make it right.

Raw, honest and gut wrenching, in this interview, Pete will help you gauge your level of emotional and spiritual maturity and help you make progress.

Welcome to Episode 230 of the podcastListen and access the show notes below or search for the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts and listen for free.

Guest Links | Facebook | Twitter

The Emotionally Healthy Leader

Episode Links

Overcome the seven greatest challenges no one expects and everyone experiences. Learn more and get your copy of Didn’t See It Coming at

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The Genesee Diary: Report from a Trappist Monastery by Henri Nouwen

The Crucifixion: Understanding the Death of Jesus Christ by Fleming Rutledge

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport

3 Insights from Pete

1. Self awareness is key to being emotionally mature

Ever wonder if others see you the same way you see yourself? Emotional maturity is tricky. Start with self awareness. Do you have the ability to recognize what’s going on inside of you and integrate your feelings in a healthy way? Next, take a look at your pace. Is your life slowed down enough to be with Jesus or are you doing things for yourself and sending him a shout out from the back of the line? Finally, if you want to really find out how you’re doing, just ask the people around you. Knowing how they experience your personality will shine a spotlight on who you truly are.

2. Christians often value kindness over honesty

It happens a lot in leadership doesn’t it? We don’t always tell the truth.

Sometimes we actually believe that being nice to someone is more helpful than being honest. But the thing is that we’re not actually helping anyone if we’re not being truthful – The truth shall set you free – right?

Now, it’s definitely important to choose being respectful and thoughtful over imprudent and nasty, but the church is never going to build the kingdom of God by pretending that what’s wrong is right.

3. Struggling with a difficult person is an opportunity for self-growth

Whether at work or home, enduring emotionally immature people is challenging. But instead of pointing the blame and confronting them about what they need to change, consider using this as an opportunity for your own self-improvement.

Look inward. What does your reaction to this situation tell you about yourself? Ask God to change your heart and how you respond. Do the hard work of growing and maturing and everything else will work itself out in time. Work on you before you work on anyone else.

Quotes from Episode 230

Who you are is way more important than what you do. @petescazzero Click To Tweet If you want to really find out how you're doing, just ask the people around you. @petescazzero Click To Tweet Work on you first before you work on anybody else. @petescazzero Click To Tweet Leadership flows out of healthy discipleship. @petescazzero Click To Tweet You're never going to build the kingdom of God by pretending that what's wrong is right. @petescazzero Click To Tweet

Read or Download the Transcript for Episode 230

Looking for a key quote? More of a reader?

Read or download a free PDF transcript of this episode here.

Solve the Problems Most Leaders Miss: Didn’t See It Coming Will Help

If you want practical help overcoming some of the biggest challenges leaders face, my new book Didn’t See It Coming: Overcoming the 7 Greatest Challenges That Nobody Expects and Everyone Experiences tackles the seven core issues that take people out: cynicism, compromise, disconnectedness, irrelevance, pride, burnout, and the emptiness of success and provides strategies on how to combat each.

I wrote the book because no 18 year old sets out to be cynical, jaded and disconnected by age 35. Yet it happens all the time.

The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Here’s what top leaders are saying about Didn’t See It Coming:

“Seriously, this may be the most important book you read this year.” Jud Wilhite, Lead Pastor, Central Church

“Powerful, personal, and highly readable. ” Brian Houston, Global Senior Pastor, Hillsong

“Whatever challenge you’re facing, whatever obstacle you’re hoping to overcome, whatever future you dream or imagine, there is something powerful for you here.” Andy Stanley, Founder, North Point Ministries

“Uncommonly perceptive and generous…You have to read this book.” Ann Voskamp, NYT bestselling author

“Masterful.” Reggie Joiner, CEO Orange

“Deep biblical insight, straightforward truth, and practical wisdom to help you grow.” Craig Groeschel, Pastor and NYT bestselling author

“This book is sure to help you.” Daniel H. Pink, NYT bestselling author

Over the years, one of the things I’ve enjoyed most about being a public speaker is having opportunities to hang out with Carey…It’s not a matter of if you’ll run into these challenges; it’s a matter of when. Be prepared by spending a little time with a leader who has already been there.” Jon Acuff, NYT best-selling author

“Nieuwhof’s book provides expert guidance…with an accuracy that pierces the heart.” Nancy Duarte, CEO Duarte Inc.

“A refreshingly transparent guide for all leaders in a wide variety of industries.” Bryan Miles, Co-Founder and CEO, BELAY

You can learn more and get your copy of Didn’t See It Coming here.

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Next Episode: Jon Thompson

One of the more perplexing questions people ask is “What am I truly called and gifted to do?” Jon Thompson, Preaching and Vision Pastor of C4 Church and adjunct faculty at Tyndale Theological Seminary, answers that question both for people in the marketplace AND church leaders. We also dive into why operating outside of your calling and gift set is both dangerous and draining.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 231.

CNLP 230: Pete Scazzero on Why So Many Successful Leaders Are Emotionally Immature, How to Tell Whether That’s You, and How to Become Emotionally Intelligent and Spiritually Mature

1 Comment

  1. Sean Nemecek on December 4, 2018 at 11:22 am

    Thanks for this episode. You and Pete are two of my biggest influences. In this episode, you asked us to reach out and connect so you could “try and get in your corner.” Here goes. You inspired me to start a website designed to reach the gap in pastoral burnout by training churches how to care for pastors. I’d be honored if you’d visit

    My hope is to develop training free resources to help small and poor churches follow the Biblical commands to minister to their pastor. I believe that when the church does this, the people get the real benefit. If you are interested, I’d love to chat more about what we hope to do.

    Thanks for all you are doing!

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