September 06, 2016

Let’s realise and maximise our potential

It is a fact that everybody has their own potential. However, most people tend to neglect seeking the ways and means to realise and maximise their potential. Although early life development and early formative experiences within the family, at school etc can help to shape young persons into adults, personal development should not stop later in life. Personal development is not an event but a process that requires lifelong effort. People need to exert a sustained effort for their own development throughout their life.
Personal development is a way for people to assess their skills and qualities, consider their aims in life and set goals in order to make full use of their potential. In this regard, some tips would be, in order to help the youth identify their skills, set life goals that can enhance their employability, raise their confidence level and lead to a more fulfilling, higher-quality life. Young people are advised to plan to make relevant, positive and effective life choices and decisions for their future to enable personal empowerment.
Despite the prevalence of ideas surrounding personal development, the editorial space limits this writer to just one piece of advice .i.e. the process called self-actualisation. The extent to which people are able to develop, according to Maslow (1970), depends upon certain needs being met, and these needs form a hierarchy. Only when one level of need is satisfied can a higher one be developed. As change occurs throughout life, however, the level of need motivating a person’s behavior at any one time will also change.
At the bottom of the hierarchy are the basic physiological needs for food, drink, sex and sleep – i.e. the basics for survival. Second are the needs for safety and security in both the physical and economic sense. Thirdly, progression can be made to satisfying the need for love and belonging. The fourth level refers to meeting the need for self-esteem and self-worth. This is the level most closely related to self-empowerment. The fifth level relates to the need to understand. This level includes more abstract ideas such as curiosity and the search for meaning or purpose and a deeper understanding. The sixth is concerned with aesthetic needs of beauty, symmetry and order. At the top of Maslow’s hierarchy is the need for self actualization. Maslow (1970, P.383) says that all individuals have the need to see themselves as competent and autonomous, also that everybody has limitless room for growth.
Self-actualisation is in fact the desire that all people ‘have to become everything that they are capable of becoming’. In other words, it refers to self-fulfilment and the need to reach full potential as a unique human being. Let’s not forget that the path to self-actualization involves being in touch with our feelings, experiencing life fully and with total concentration, and let’s try to realise and maximise our potential.


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