Your psychosocial wellbeing
On the one hand, you hear how you should be able to pull yourself up by your bootstraps. You’re reminded how your behavior is ultimately your own responsibility—that no one can make you act in any way that you did not in some way choose. In short, you are free and individually responsible.
On the other hand, there’s the argument your options are limited. You typically act only in ways that others and your actual situation allow you to act, lest you suffer some harsh consequences. In short, impacts on your social-needs constrains how much individual freedom you can fully enjoy.
Well, which is it?
Are both wrong? Or both correct, in their own particular ways? Political wisdom favors one over the other. Nature is less partial. Every need you experience you will find ultimately rooted in nature.
Conventional wisdom shapes how you experience such needs, but nature provides the what. Ultimately, you need both. You cannot enjoy psychosocial wellbeing until both sides receive due attention.
The more eased your self-needs, the more your neglected social-needs draw to the fore, sometimes painfully. Likewise, the more eased your social-needs, the more your underserved self-needs pull your attention.
You experience psychosocial discomfort
Nature compels you and I to balance our self-needs with our social needs, prompting uncomfortable feelings to steer us toward relief. You experience this imbalance as discomfort in familiar ways, as illustrated by these four examples.
Often, this imbalance gets quickly resolved. Other times, not so fast. Too often, the imbalance solidifies into a daily experience. One set of psychosocial needs dominate over the other.
Of course, the process is much more complex than briefly represented here. For a more thorough treatment, please check out the eCourse at Udemy, starting with the free previews. If you're on a tight budget, ask me about any available discounts. I trust it will open doors for you in ways you’ve never seen before.
Self > Social
Social > Self
Social-needs > Self-needs
If you’re experiencing more companionship than meaningful self-acceptance, you’re prone to feel smothered. You feel suffocated by your loved one’s attention, when fearing to expose your deepest secrets to them. You close this gap the more you experience their firm support while slowly dropping your guard.
If you’re experiencing more belonging than satisfying autonomy, you’re prone to feel coerced. You experience your group identity imposing a cost of compliance to group needs. You close this gap the more you can serve your group needs in ways that do not infringe upon your personal potential.
If you’re experiencing more social support than self-sufficiency, you’re prone to suffer paternalism. You could provide for yourself, but imposed provisions stifle your personal potential. You close this gap the more you forego imposed provisions and develop your skills to provide for yourself.
If you’re experiencing more group inclusion than personal resilience, you’re prone to feel overly dependent. You become accustomed to your group providing for you, to the point you miss developing your own self-efficacies. You close this gap the more you stretch out and do more for yourself.
Self-needs > Social-needs
If you’re experiencing more self-acceptance than intimate companionship, you’re prone to feel alienated. You deeply know who you authentically are, but few if anyone may know you or embrace you at this unique level. You’re likely to close this gap by finding others with whom to cultivate deeper relationships.
If you’re experiencing more autonomy than satisfying belonging, you’re prone to feel overwhelmed. You find you must fend for yourself in too many situations. You long to close this gap by finding groups that will take you in and give you a sense of supportive belonging.
If you’re experiencing more self-sufficiency than social support, you’re prone to feel limited. You can only do so much entirely on your own. You seek to close this gap by asking others for help as needed, and testing how trustworthy they are to your support needs without turning paternalistic on you.
If you’re experiencing more personal resilience than group inclusion, you’re prone to feel guarded. You’ve survived incredible social pressures on your own. You yearn to close this gap by finding somewhere to be more included, or to be more included by all of society itself.
Feelings matter. According to anakelogy, emotions personally convey your needs. Emotions compel you to seek relief from the pain of unmet needs. Reasoning comes in later to serve these feeling-fueled needs.
Emotions get a bad rap when regarding only those intense feelings we regret acting upon too soon. I bet you never feel regret when mindlessly reacting to your thirst by gulping down some water. The bulk of your emotions serves you well, and keeps you well.
You can include in these emotions your alerted psychosocial needs. You naturally feel compelled, starting with emotional energy, to close any gap between your self-needs and social-needs.
You count on others to help ease your many painful needs, and trust others to allow you to provide for yourself when you can. You gravitate to others with likeminded psychosocial needs.
Others likewise seek likeminded folks for support to ease their painfully felt needs. In the process, they readily avoid those experienced as painful or threateningly painful to their persisting unmet needs—especially their strained psychosocial needs. Tribalism then seeps in.
More energy may get invested opposing others of a different set of psychosocial needs than in addressing the original needs. This risks perpetuating unmet needs in a way that reinforces the gap between self-needs and social-needs.
In short, the gap between one’s self-needs and social-needs never closes. Instead, the gap solidifies into a psychosocial orientation.
Which do you find more urgent? Your self-needs, like autonomy and resilience? Or your social-needs, like support and broad inclusion? Conventional wisdom gets split on this issue.