Self-actualization is the realization of our full potential, feeling at ease with oneself, and feeling confidence in one’s abilities. It is often thought of as the main goal of every person. It has also been described as the best version of ourselves. Self-actualization may seem unobtainable, but there are a variety of ways to become closer to self-actualization, including mindfulness and goal setting.
Mindfulness is all about the here and now. It is an acceptance of oneself and current emotions and thoughts and an awareness of physical sensations. Mindfulness is a continuous process. It involves letting go of the past and making peace with past mistakes and hurts.
Goal setting has shown both positive and negative effects on self-actualization. Negative effects stem from setting unrealistic, overly ambitious, or competition-centered goals. This can undermine self-actualization and leave you feeling burnt out, frustrated, and unproductive. Goals should also come from your true desires. Achieving goals that have little meaning often feels hollow and unfulfilling. Think of these kinds of goals as reaching a colorful line marked on a hamster wheel. You may feel a little satisfaction each time you cross it, but you are not really moving. Ultimately, you will be exhausted and have not gone anywhere.
Proper goal setting leads to a sense of true accomplishment and satisfaction. Goals should be founded in our values and desires, called autonomous motives, rather than founded in guilt or outside rewards, called controlled motives (Miquelon & Vallerand, 2008). Goals should also be realistic and may need to be divided into numerous small goals or steps.
Self-actualization is a process of self-discovery and can be accomplished through mindfulness, goal setting, and other methods. Begin your journey to become complete today. We’re conveniently located in Utah County.
Ivtzan, Itai, et al. (2013). Wellbeing through self-Fulfilment: Examining developmental aspects of self-Actualization. The Humanistic Psychologist. doi:10.1080/08873267.2012.712076.
Miquelon & Vallerand. (2008). Goal motives, well-Being, and physical health: An integrative model. Canadian Psychology. doi:10.1037/a0012759.