The Value of Being Loyal to Yourself

01 November, 2016

The value of being loyal to ourselves is enormous. To prove that being true to yourself can provide great benefits to your way of thinking and understanding the world, I would like to take a stroll through the precepts of humanistic psychology.

It is very possible that you have heard about humanistic psychology. This movement has been and still is a valid alternative to behaviorism and Freudian psychoanalysis.

What is humanistic psychology

Humanistic psychology is a school of psychology which posits that the altered states of the conscience are an exceptional means to reach our full human potential, giving special relevance to the non-verbal experience.

sun peaking through hands

Humanistic psychology is a modern branch that originated in the United States as part of the revolutionary cultural movements of the 1960s. It has ultimately established itself as a valid psychological approach for different social and artistic fields.

To validate the approaches of humanistic psychology, its supporters rely on the theories of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the celebrated French philosopher. Rousseau describes human beings as noble savages who have developed productive, kind, happy and good sensibilities. That is, as long as adverse experiences or society itself don’t corrupt their nature.

Being loyal to ourselves according to humanistic psychology

Humanistic psychology proposes the following characteristics of humans:

  • The human being should be global. Within every human being converge feelings, conducts, actions and thoughts into one whole.
  • Human behavior is intentional, as viewed from a personal perspective, in which freedom and dignity participate in a relevant manner.
  • The personal existence of every being should pass through an interpersonal context, within which every being develops. Yet, always minding their individuality in social relationships with their peers.
  • The human being is an autonomous person. Each individual has the ability to make their own decisions, which in turn orient their development in the direction they so choose.
  • Someone who is autonomous has the ability to assume their own responsibilities within social and interpersonal relationships.
  • The inherent and natural tendency of human beings is self-realization. Due to this, individuality and personal growth are produced.
  • Every internal experience of every human being is personal and has a meaning within itself. These experiences are the fundamental axis on which they develop a network of perceptions that each person has about themselves.
“One of the advantages of good actions is that it elevates the soul and arranges it to make other even better actions.”
-Jean-Jacques Rousseau-
woman eyes closed enjoying breeze

Approaches of humanistic psychology

Let’s get to know the diverse approaches that can be found in the theories of humanistic psychology. You will see in all of them the vital importance of being loyal to ourselves in order to have an existence of great value:

  • Existentialism: is one of the classic approaches of humanistic psychology. Existentialism is a current of thought which posits that the main issue of human beings is existence itself, and not essence. For existentialism, time translates to possibility of life and the future turns into the possibility of living that time with freedom. They affirm that our anguish doesn’t make any sense, since humans can take advantage of their existence with many more expressions than the ones they anguish over.
  • Transpersonalism: supported by Maslow, the humanistic current accepts a transpersonal approach in which the fundamental concept is based on the psychic satisfaction of the human being. A satisfaction that revolves around a scale of necessities that we need to give priorities to depending on their relevance to our psychic life.
  • Humanistic psychotherapy of Carl Rogers. This is based on two fundamental points. First, complete trust in the therapist-client relationship. It’s about transmitting empathy for the patient and understanding the patient’s experience and that of their world in order to understand them. Second, complete rejection of the therapist’s leading role. 
  • Logotherapy. Viktor Frankl bases his humanistic approach on the search for the meaning of life. A meaning that will serve as a guarantee of our mental health in the face of challenging situations, which would be that string that ties us to life and which keeps us from falling into complicated situations. It is precisely that fidelity that we keep for this idea that in turn protects us.
  • Transactional analysis. Another approach supported by Berne postulates humanistic psychology as the restoration and protection of the trust and that person’s existential potential.
  • Bioenergetic approach: Lowen defends the study of each person’s character in order to avoid neurosis and repression for not being able to express and expulse their biological energy freely.

It’s obvious that humanistic psychology focuses greatly on the importance of being loyal to oneself, because only by being themselves can someone manage to develop their enormous potential and psychic abilities.