Humanistic Approach to Personality
A couple years ago I took about that talked about how people are actually studied and the different approaches that are taken. We are much different than anything else in the world that can be studied because we are fundamentally different. The unique aspects on which humanistic approaches focus are experience, awareness, free will, dignity, and the meaning of life.
In positive psychology, which was another course that I took, people were studied as well. Positive psychology does not deny the negative, but it can help an individual recognize the positive side of any event. It is obviously unlikely that one single person is going to be completely happy and have everything they ever wanted, but they can choose to provide themselves with the context for a good life. This is similar to what humanistic psychologists view as well. Maslow even proposed that a human need for understanding, beauty, and self-actualization becomes important for an individual’s happiness.
Since I have completed these courses, I have thought about this concept and how I apply it within my own life. If I am having a hard time understanding something, whether it is a concept, idea or even a physical task, I instantly become frustrated. A part of me believes this is because I am used to things coming easy to me, but the other part is just plain old frustration. I feel as if I “need” to understand. When I do not, I start to feel depressed or down on myself. This is when my knowledge of positive psychology can come into play. I know that I can take a step back and look at the situation in a different; a more positive way.
This past year I have done an immense amount of self-actualization. I have learned a lot about the person that I am and continue to mold myself into the person I want to be. This also attributes to my happiness. Beauty is a concept humans will always worry about, whether they want to admit it or not. I do not ever judge a book by its cover, but I see how beauty plays a role within jobs, businesses and society every day.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
If I apply these needs to be own life I would modestly say that I am at the top of the pyramid (or very close to it). My physiological needs are all taken care of. I have never had to live without food, water or clothing. I have been very fortunate in this sense. I have on rare occasions been worried about my safety. Again, fortunately I was raised in a good home, with a lot of family and friends to support me. This also ties in with my belongingness and love needs. I have always felt loved by my family and friends. Although I do not have the best relationship with my mother, I have never let that affect me. I just look at that part of my life as, everything in life happens for a reason. I have a great self esteem. Like everyone in this world, there are times when I have a bad day or when my feelings and self-esteem are hurt, but never for an extended period of time.
Finally on the top of the pyramid, is the need for self-actualization. This is the need I am currently working on fulfilling. I can honestly say obtaining my master’s degree and starting my own non-profit, has played a huge role in this need. I have learned so much about myself and what I am capable of, if I put my mind to it. Also, as part of my need for self-actualization I have mentally made the decision to not only settle for my master’s degree, but also to continue on and obtain a Ph.D. (or doctorate). For some reason I feel the urge that I need the title of “Dr. Franceschelli” to feel satisfied with my inner-self.
So what where do you see yourself on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs? What are things you can do you move up on that pyramid?
Sooner than later,
The Tiny Professional