I was working on a topic with my coach, and he started to speak about Maslow and Maslow's hierarchy of needs. At this point, I am kind of tuning out, yeah, yeah, a triangle that begins with the idea or you need to wee first, then eat and you require shelter and who could live without their phone. After the basic needs are filled, you will then have a need to feel safe and loved and somewhere along the line you begin to have room in your life to enjoy higher culture, learning, spirituality, and the top of the triangle is to self-actualise... be who you are meant to be. It was when he started to speak about what comes after that; my ears perked up: Self-transcendence.
So when Maslow says, What you can be you must be, to me it means
I have to write. I am a writer. I express myself through writing. It took me a long time to get to the point where I considered myself a writer. Not even a Best Selling Author Certificate on my wall made me feel like a writer. The only way I began to feel like a writer was by writing. So today - I HAVE TO WRITE.
See, what I can be I must be. :)
I am the kind of person, that has no interest in theory if it doesn't translate into practice. If it doesn't come down to something tangible that I can work with and make sense of it. That is just how I have always been. First, I try it out, then I gather my learnings and compare it to theory. Kind of from practice to theory -approach and I know typically people handle information totally opposite of that, but hey, that's me.
So back to the question: What can I be?
To make this practical, I need to figure out what am I after? What is the target?
What would the best possible me look like? In ancient Greek, they had a word for the type of person you want to strive to be - EU DAIMON - Daimon, meaning the soul and Eu meaning good. What is the ideal me? What is my EUDAIMON?
What else can I be? I can be better. I can be better in every way. I can strive to become better in every area of my life. What does it really mean?
What specifically would itmean for me to show up as my Eudaimon? I can be more in-depth in my connection with my loved ones. I get to be even more passionate about the successes of my clients. I get to take care of me with so much more intention and express so much more self-love that I have ever done. I get to eat good food, move my body in ways that feel good to me. Spend time with my friends more often. Cook more, cuddle with my dog more, help people more, be more present in everyday life. I get to make peace with time. Take all the time I need to complete the tasks ahead of me. I get to be courageous not just some days but every day. I get to love with such intensity that it will take my breath way.
At this point, you realise there is a lot here. Looking through the lenses of EUDAIMON, you understand there is an infinite amount of potential unrealised in you. That is where the self-transcendence comes and blows us out of the water.
Exactly like Marianne Williamson wrote in Return to Love:-
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
To me, that is giving yourself to the world - as my Coach Brian Johnson from Optimize.me, so eloquently put it.
When you get, that life is more than about fulfilling your needs or even self-actualising, you begin to understand, that the next step will be about beginning to serve a higher purpose than yourself. That my friend is self-transcendence (very simplistically put but hey... that's like me too).
Once you understand the infinite potential you have to become better, it is then easy to look at your current state and see the gap between who you are currently being and who you could be. It is a huge gap. Don't worry, it always is with everyone.
Your job then becomes to close that gap.
Here it may be a good time to let you know, that you will never close the gap between who you ideally can be and who you currently are. However, to me, the best possible way to leave this world is to die trying.
Here's to your self-transcendence and all the blessings it will bring to the world. <3