There’s always room for Maslow

Abraham Maslow and Self Actualization:  We need to be in a positive space in order to generate ideas, to create.

Like, duh!

Abraham Maslow (1908-1970) was the founder of Humanistic Psychology. This was a great contribution because it proposed a growth-motivated rather than deficiency-motivated view. Here are topics that stand out in Abraham Maslow’s vocabulary: Ambition, Vividness, Achievement, Potentiality, Affirmation, Motivation.

Artist angst. Erm,.. it has it’s place.

But how about making space for some life-affirming rays of light. Open the curtains on you winter blahs. Sunlight is the best antiseptic, right?

Grist for the mill? Meh. Let’s not bother with the grain of sand that makes the pearl right now. How about we accentuate the positive?

Sure, you need something to chew on. A problem which motivates, but it is resolved within the positive action.

Achieving a self-actualized place in your life makes possible the space for the generation of ideas and creating.

Maslow’s thinking was surprisingly original—-most psychologists before him had been concerned with the abnormal and the ill. Maslow wanted to know what constituted positive mental health. He believed that people possess the inner resources for growth and healing. He reasoned that we contain a natural desire, or motivation to achieve budding ambitions, to become everything that one is capable of becoming.


The following list, from, is awesome, try some:


  • Experience things fully, vividly, selflessly. Throw yourself into the experiencing of something: concentrate on it fully, let it totally absorb you.
  • Life is an ongoing process of choosing between safety (out of fear and need for defense) and risk (for the sake of progress and growth): Make the growth choice a dozen times a day.
  • Let the self emerge. Try to shut out the external clues as to what you should think, feel, say, and so on, and let your experience enable you to say what you truly feel.
  • When in doubt, be honest. If you look into yourself and are honest, you will also take responsibility. Taking responsibility is self-actualizing.
  • Listen to your own tastes. Be prepared to be unpopular.
  • Use your intelligence, work to do well the things you want to do, no matter how insignificant they seem to be.
  • Make peak experiencing more likely: get rid of illusions and false notions. Learn what you are good at and what your potentialities are not.
  • Find out who you are, what you are, what you like and don’t like, what is good and what is bad for you, where you are going, what your mission is. Opening yourself up to yourself in this way means identifying defenses–and then finding the courage to give them up.

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