Life: A Humanistic Perspective
Becoming your ideal self
My Dear Reader,
It is the end of another week! If you read last week’s newsletter you would notice that it ended abruptly. Hence, I sincerely apologise as that was due to a web error. For this reason, I will be including a link to last week’s original draft here:
What’s up for today?
Today we discuss the concept of life and human development from the perspective of Humanistic Psychology.
The humanistic school of thought opines that human beings are inherently good and strive towards becoming the best versions of themselves (self-ideal). Every person is unique in their characteristics and experiences.
The discipline focuses on concepts such as self-efficacy, self-actualisation and free will.
What does this mean?
Everyone has the responsibility of taking charge of their lives and contributing positively to their environment. Humanistic psychology does not focus on people’s inabilities or shortcomings. Rather, it encourages us to look at the best parts of ourselves and channel them into personal growth and development.
Carl Rogers was one of the propounders of humanistic psychology. He believed that childhood experiences were important and the growth of an individual in their environment depended on three things: empathy, acceptance and genuineness.
He also maintained that self-actualisation occurred when goals, desires and wishes are achieved. The path to this state also hinges on one’s childhood experiences.
Rogers’ theory tells us that people’s perception of others coupled with early experiences is what makes up our personality or self.
Children have two basic requirements: the need for self-worth and the need for positive acceptance from others.
Throughout our lifetime, we gravitate from high feelings of self-worth to low feelings and then we go back again. Positive acceptance includes a sense of belonging, a feeling of value and respect from others.
Therefore, parents need to first build up their children’s self-worth and show positive acceptance first before interactions with other people. Parents need to reassure their children that they are welcomed whether they are at their best or worst versions of themselves. This is the first step in building self-actualisation.
Becoming your ideal self is a continuous process. It is never too late to make decisions that will help in fulfilling your life’s goal. However, children should be put on the right path early.
PS a reminder…
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