The theory of self-actualization has existed for decades. It is the basic human desire to do whatever you can and whatever you are capable of to feel fulfilled in your lives. The needs themselves can be different for different people. However, each has the potential to make your life more interesting and meaningful.
Self-Actualization is the fulfillment of one’s full potential . It is where one chases excellence and enjoyment in the activities that gives them satisfaction. It is to become a whole person who is fulfilled with their mental or physical achievements.
A brief description of Self-Actualization
Self-actualization is popularly known for being at the very top of Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. It is a pyramid containing the needs a human must have in order to become a complete,self-satisfied and ”actualized” being. Although he himself admits that the positions of the needs in his hierarchy are interchangeable. It can change according to the priorities of an individual on and is thus not set in stone.
Maslow’s hierarchy is based on the belief that people need to fulfill some basic needs in order to become self-actualized. Needs such as food , water, shelter, security, etc are essentials. Without these needs a person would not look as far as fulfilling creative or career goals.
Self-Actualization in reality
The hierarchy goes from basic needs such as food, shelter, safety, and rest to the actual self-actualization where we pursue whatever in life that makes us feel fulfilled. To some it could be to become good parents while to others, to have an excellent career. Without fulfilling these desires a person will not be completely satisfied with other aspects of their lives.
A person might be at the height of their career but feel dissatisfied with the success without pursuing their desire to be an excellent artist. An excellent builder could at the same time be satisfied with his career despite not making good money off his talent.
A good parent, balancing a great career may not feel fulfilled without pursuing their hobby of dancing despite loving their family and finding happiness in them. At the same time, a dancer who has a declining career can feel fulfilled by having a well-functioning family.
Self-actualization is growth motivated as opposed to deficiency motivated. It is the desire of a person to grow and better themselves for the sake of reaching their full potential.
The benefits to being Self-Actualized
Self-actualization is not about having the highest level success. It is not about caving in and settling for the next best thing. It is a deeply individual process. A self-actualized person keeps reaching for the things that make them the best version of themselves.
By being self actualized, you will be in a state where you are open to new experiences and ideas. It is much like being on top of a mountain looking all around instead of being at the base of one, looking up at the looming mountains around you.
You will learn to accept your self for who you are instead of comparing yourself to others. Start to working on the qualities within yourself and apply that knowledge in dealing with the world around you.
You will no longer be confined to others idea of happiness. By being self actualized you will have learned what it is that makes you feel the happiest and fulfilled.
You will no longer be as dependent on others to be happy. It will give you the strength to be on your own and work on yourself when you are not in a favorable environment. You will not have to depend on the toxic relations around you to make sense of your life.
What a person chases in life can be different for each individual. Call it following your dreams or finding your purpose in life, without being mentally and emotionally satisfied everything just comes to waste. Finding your path to being self-actualized is the best way to improve and better your life.