Self actualization

Abraham Maslow and his approach for human existentialism is the last part of the Introduction to Humanistic and Existentialism approaches in Counselling and Psychotherapy. In this post I will summarize my last three posts to make it as simple as I can.
It is worth to be reminded of Maslow’s opinion about self-actualization where he believes what people need for personal growth and discovery in life is personal meaning, depending on what is worth and important for them. According to the characteristics for instance:

 ” They perceive reality efficiently and can tolerate uncertainty. Accept themselves and others for what they are. Spontaneous in thought and action” or self-actualization person behavior. For example:

“Experiencing life like a child, with full absorption and concentration. Trying new things instead of sticking to safe paths. Listening to your feelings in evaluating experiences instead of the voice of tradition, authority or the majority.”

Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” and his investment for education make a major contribution to work for teaching and classroom management. As a human, we need to strive for full potential and step by step retaliate ourself in our own life from basic existence, biological and physiological needs, from safety to love and belongs and from esteem, reputation to self-actualization.


“The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.”

Carl Rogers.


Personal development and growth during the journey of therapeutic approaches in humanistic and existentialism, as a person, have to be experienced and evaluated by our own self-awareness, find the locus of evaluation and constantly improve actualizing tendency to remember the condition of self-worth and organismic processes during human life.

A developing person has to remember about Rogers rationale where we know that we exist in the hierarchy of human needs and our growth by own experiences and awareness of own control self. Constantly looking and improving meaning and sense in life. Foster a good working relationship with ourself and others. The humanistic school believes when the therapist provides proper therapeutic processes, then the client can heal himself, in many issues without medication.

Personal growth lets us be at ease with ourself, more truly and more understanding and more aware. To be more responsible as a person who has their own choice, be in the here and now at present, no to live in the past and by going there and checking it out is primitive and by not staying in there, is key for peronsal growth.
Theories of counselling provide the therapist with a conceptual framework by which their work allows them to think systematically about human development and therapeutic processes.

Another value in human development is finding the sense in life according to existentialism approaches and from authors like Victor Frankl, who wrote the amazing book “Men search for meaning “, a book from experience in his life during which he has to stay in Nazi camps during the WII. He asks his comrade and himself what is the meaning of life, what is the purpose and the aim. Even though the experience causes irreparable damage because of the loss of his family, he does not lose the sense of the life as he knows by reflection and by the self-determination and the uniqueness of the human. We can find existentialism by many authors from the philosophical point of view Nietzsche, Soren Kierkegaard, Sartre or Buber to more phenomenological structures and close in time like Rollo May, Irvin Yalom, James Bugental. All that helps in the development by humanistic approaches, is that any human is unique and individual, we are born alone and will die alone. We come into the world for a particular reason and a purpose for living; To live in the here and now.

“The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction, not a destination.”

Carl Rogers

Published by Marcin Bogucki

Counselling & Psychotherapy for both English and Polish speakers.

9 thoughts on “Self actualization

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