Monday, December 30, 2013

Self Actualization: Giving the Hierarchy of Needs a New Perspective

For those of you who took a high school or intro class to Psych, know of a little man named Abraham Maslow. This guy came up with a hierarchy of needs based on the idea that if one need is met then you are able to move on to the next layer of needs each getting more complex and difficult  to achieve.

Bottom layer consists of: Food, Water, Shelter, Air, Sleep
Next: Safety and Security
Third: Belonging, Love, and Love based on growth and not deficiency
Fourth: Self- respect, Self-esteem, and positive feelings as a result of admiration
Finally: Self Actualization

Bottom layer is common sense. Without any of those mentioned you would literally perish. In achieving a consistent amount of those you will start feeling secure in your sense of survival. A little more confidence and consistency you will start to feel safe.  Easy Peasy.

Now the next two are the ones that I believe are mixed up. In my opinion, that chart is telling me that I need to be loved to have self-esteem or self-respect. It is also telling me that I should base my self worth on the admiration of others. Now it is true, we are not meant to do life alone. We are a community and social species. However, I do not agree with basing how others feel about me is how I know how I should feel about myself.

How are you ever going to know how to love others if you cannot love yourself? There is no way a person can say positive things to other people and be sincere, but can't say those same things to themselves in the mirror.

One of the key things to self-actualization is self-love. First and foremost you need to know that you were wonderfully made and that you have purpose in this life. Then you have to believe it, and live it. Once you're able to love yourself, people will be able to smell it on you (a pheromone perfume if you will) and be attracted to you. You'll be able to show that love to other people which is another key ingredient to self-actualization. The ability to love your fellow man and to show it.

Have grace for each other. It is in our nature to be offensive sometimes without even knowing it. The best thing you can do is to forgive and show love even if your mind is telling your to tear them down. You will be able to do that by first learning self-respect, and self-esteem, not after learning love and how to belong.

What is the legacy you want to leave behind in this world? The real meaning of life is your own personal journey but two things are consistent; Loving yourself and loving others.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Internalizing Issues are Poison to Ourselves

One of the problem's I've seen in young adults and grown people alike, is this habit of internalizing. The reason why could be different for everyone:
 You're protecting yourself.
 You're protecting another.
 You'd rather post an edited version on Facebook, Twitter, Tublr, ect.
 You don't know how. 

Here's the issue.

If you feel that you're protecting yourself by internalizing a problem that you're having, you're doing the exact opposite. By internalizing the problem you're allowing the enemy within yourself to get ahold of it. That enemy will then pick apart every single detail and come up with way to make your perspective of the problem way worse than it originally was. You can only inject so many issues or problems in your mind before it starts poisoning you. 

We are taught this double standard to talk about our feelings but when the feelings are being perceived as wrong or unacceptable, we are told to clam up and "Get over it." Our internal tribulations are downgraded into minuscule problems; even if they're holding a heavy weight on an individual. If we are teaching our young children to talk about their issues then we need to listen and not dismiss it.

By dismissing it, we're creating an insecurity that no one wants to listen and therefore their problems don't matter. They do. How many cases can you think of that you just wanted someone to listen? I can say that I've had things on my heart that I wanted to get out but didn't because it wouldn't be appropriate or it might stir up something. I got scared to resolve a problem, because of a reaction I wasn't even sure of. It was the act of second-guessing. 

Acknowledge the problem.  Don't hide it under the rug because you're just going to trip over it.

If you feel like you're protecting another, how could you possibly know the outcome? I mentioned that the enemy within yourself will pick apart problems and make it worse. It can also convince you that by hiding it and not confronting it will protect whoever. It will not.  If you're worried about protecting a loved one, how much will it hurt that you didn't inform them. Or, what if they are walking to a problem that could have been avoided. It is not your responsibility to decide what protects someone or liberates them. You have a responsibility to yourself and to others to share the truth and to find resolution with your fellow man.

One of the saddest things about this day in age is our need to be connected to social media at all times. Especially for young females they share that they're sad, but are so vague about the problem that no one knows how to help. People only offer "It's okay." "You're beautiful." "I'm here for you if you need me." I think they become so addicted to the reaction that they will avoid dealing with their problem or issue to milk the virtual attention. The need to feel like someone is there is greater than the need to feel like what's bothering you is ok and resolvable. So we spew out one vague line after another and internalize the real issue.

Our first thought when we come across an internal tribulation shouldn't be how you're going to write it on Facebook. It's because we put more value on our social media output than we do on our internal health. It's a problem when a person feels so desperate to expose some personal turmoil that they have to put it out to the world instead of feeling the confidence to not internalize.

The fact that people do not know how not to internalize if a society problem. Not one person should feel like they have to carry the weight of the world. We need to eliminate the double standard and when we teach our young ones to speak about their issues, mean it. Internalizing problems can turn into actions. Sometimes its outcasting one's self, others it's engaging in violence for some release.

That's all a violent act is. A release from an internalized emotion that one doesn't know how to deal with otherwise.

We avoid internalizing by acknowledging the problem, knowing that it's ok and right to have them, addressing the problem, and finding an intelligent resolution.

How can you break someone's thinking that resolving a problem has to be an outward action of negative feelings or violence?

I believe that changing that way we see issues and problems is the first step. Creating a culture that doesn't hide behind their blank face or keyboard, but finds peaceful and loving solutions. A culture of forgiveness, and unity.

Bad things are going to happen. People are going to hurt us. It's human nature, and it's up to us how to react to it.

Even as simple as going up to someone as saying "You did (insert) and it made me feel (insert)". If they blow you off, thats not your problem. Society has molded them that way. Circumstance has callused them and made them unable to react properly. At least you made the first step.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The beginning

In the beginning I wanted to be a website where tomboy's all grown up could loosen up the garter belts and be the girls that we truly were. But then I was thinking that it could become more than that. Maybe it could morph unto this new age feminine empowerment influence (I'm not talking bra burning "I hate men" empowerment.)It could encourage women  to except our bodies, love our selves, and instead of picking at each other to create these societal standards that no one can live up to, create an image of infinite beauty.

In this girl-power mind set, I was thinking of young girls everywhere actually being ok with who they are. I was thinking of that 12 year old girl who is skipping lunch because she think she's fat, or that 25 year old girl who feels guilty about getting her graduate degree instead of getting married.

Then a power surge went to my brain. My website is Girl and Bro.

There are feminist groups, female rights groups and female power groups. What about the males? We as females focus too much that this is a male dominated work and that men are the problem and that girls are molded from a young age to lay on her back and take whatever society wants to shove up her womb. Those idealistic rants are exactly the problem.

What exactly are we teaching men? Women have the most powerful influence on a man. We birth them, feed them from our breasts, raise them, teach them right from wrong.

What are we teaching them?

Why is it so wrong to sit down while you pee? It's cleaner that way. Isn't it easier to teach a young boy to sit and just push his penis down rather than hold it and aim?

We teach them to treat others right and with respect; but what do we tell them to do when they are being disrespected? "Don't let anyone disrespect you." We tell our children and young men to respect us but what we are really saying is fear us. Therefore we are teaching our young men that respect=fear. In order for someone not to disrespect you, you must install fear in them.

"Man up". We are teaching our boys maybe without realizing it that hiding your pain, anger, or suffering is the right thing to do. When we see a girl cry, we coddle her and smooth her head as she puts her head on our shoulder; feeling secure. For a boy we might do that for a little while, but even as early as four or five we start planting in their head that it's not ok to cry and be secured anymore.

We hide behind nicknames: Sport, Champ, Princess, Sweetie, Dog, ect

By these nicknames young children might catch on to what should define them instead of defining themselves. Instead of calling them by name and letting them chose to be whoever they want and loving them every single step of the way, we chose their identity for them.

We need to change this generation. As it becomes more technology dependent, it becomes harder to change a social issue without social interaction.
Holding a child's hand and telling him or her that he or she is beautiful is a lot more effective than watching a video.
Hearing a voice speaking life into someone is more effective than reading a text message.

I realize now that I don't want to be a website for tom girls. It can be much bigger than that. I want to change how we define femininity and masculinity.