The Belief in Self Actualization and Self-Esteem

Greg - woodland park, Colorado
Entered on November 21, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

This I believe in self actualization and self esteem. When I was about 11 years old, it was my mom’s birthday. I can’t remember how old she was turning, I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing though. I just remember what happened. I was hanging out with some of my friends from school and we were having a good time. Then my dad called and told me he was coming to get me to take me down to my mom’s birthday party. My friends told me that they wanted me to stay so I told my dad I didn’t want to go to my mom’s birthday party. He told me that it would hurt her feelings if I didn’t go, but I still choose not to go because my friends wanted me to stay. Well my dad was right she didn’t speak to me for about a week. Then when she finally did speak to me she told me that it hurt her feelings that I choose not to go to her party, and she told me I needed to get my priorities straight. For about 2 years I tried to answer that question, and I realized I just needed to by myself and do what I wanted to do instead of being influenced by other people. Over the past 4 months I have been developing a sense of what self actualization and self esteem really are. The more I learn, and the more I think about it the more I realize how much these terms relate to my life. The term self actualization refers to our ability to put into practice (actualize) whatever skills and talents we posses. As the creator of self actualization Abraham Maslow said “if you have carpentry skills, then these are used to make a fine product- not something shoddy that barely hangs together. If you have musical talent then you develop it so that you can sing or play an instrument beautifully and meaningful.” I have yet to find a talent that comes natural that I am exceptional at. But I have talents that I have worked hard at and developed into talents that I’m good at. When I was 12 years old I had set a goal to make the 7th grade boys basketball team. I was worried about not making it but I had some confidence since I had been play my whole life. Much to my surprise I made the team. It was that moment that I realized that any goal I set I can achieve it. Self-esteem is similar to self actualization but it is also different. In order to achieve self actualization you must perfect your self-esteem first. The term self esteem is the meaning of liking and respecting yourself. Having attained self-esteem you are in position to go on to even greater things- the need to establish meaningful goals and a purpose in life, called self actualization. I feel I have established and developed self-esteem over the last 3 or 4 years. I feel better about myself and who I am as a person. My life has gotten easier once I did develop my self- esteem, I have been able to create goals for myself and achieve them. The more goals I achieved the higher my confidence got. Once I reached a higher level of confidence I started believing in myself. As I began to believe in myself everything got easier for me. I started to care about school more than I ever have, my relationships with my family and friends got stronger, and the relationship I had with myself became stronger as well. Studying self-esteem and self actualization has given me an understanding to live in reality and the present. I have a clearer view of my priorities in life and what I need to do to succeed. I truly believe in myself, and I believe if I set a goal in life nothing will get in my way of achieving that goal.