Monday, February 27, 2012

The Well-Lived Life

I am currently taking a Human Development class and I had to research Abraham Maslow, a humanistic psychologist for a paper.  Maslow fathered the study of "Self-Actualization", or a fully lived life.

His basic premise was that all people who experience both great success and great fulfillment have common attributes. Whether the success be on a global scale or as local as a well-run neighborhood grocery, fulfilled people have common threads.

I have no real commentary to add to this discovery of humankind and nature. Except perhaps, that as I look at this list it resonates with the person I am striving to be.

The Self-Actualized Person
1. Perceptive of reality and comfortable with it
2. Acceptance of self, others, and nature
3. Spontaneity and simplicity
4. Problem centering versus self-centering
5. Able to detach in order to achieve privacy
6. Independent of culture and environment
7. Fresh appreciation
8. Mystic and peak experiences
9. Kinship or connectedness with others
10. Deeper and more profound personal relationships
11. Democratic character
12. Able to discern between good and evil
13. Good-natured sense of humor
14. Creativeness
15. Resistance to cultural peer pressure

Maslow believed that as we progress through life we have choices. Similar to forks in the road. We can go left, right, back, forward. And our choices may not be inherently right or wrong, but they do take us closer to self-actualization or further away.

We can choose fear, self-defense, and assimilation all of our lives. Then at some point decide to start focusing on our resources, our relations, and our ability to positively affect outcomes and those later-life choices would still be able to get us to a place of peace.

Isn't it beautiful that we have choice after choice in which to implement the principles of a well-lived life? So many opportunities to choose the fullness of life.

~Abraham Maslow's list was retrieved and adapted from here.~