I just finished a paper for AP Psych about personality. We're talking about the ego, the superego, Freud's insanely inaccurate theories about how personality is formed. Penis envy? Oedipus complex? For fuck's sake Freud, not everything has to do with aggression and sex. I'm more interested in Maslow's hierarchy of needs and Carl Rogers's more humanistic and practical approach to personality development.
I had to describe what the Ideal Me would be like, and compare that to the person I am now. This is some deep, soul-searching shit right here. The Ideal Me is a person who has established a code of ethics and morals completely independent from society's own morality. Someone who is free of all judgements and prejudices against others. (I'm really tired of walking into a store and thinking to myself, "Wow, that woman over there is huge." Or "That guy has a douchey haircut, therefore, he must be a douchebag.")
The Ideal Me has mastered storytelling and poetry and has made a hugely successful career out of writing. The Ideal Me is someone who is completely at peace with who she is and who others choose to be, someone who can shut society out at will, but lets loved ones in. Someone who rarely stresses over the small things, someone who can just relax and appreciate a different kind of beauty and just life in general. Someone who rarely feels anger or hatred or fear.
Unfortunately, our ideal selves are a bit hard to reach. Fortunately, we can get as close as possible to that ideal version of us. I think I'm getting there, slowly but surely. I still have judgmental thoughts about others, still stress about small things, still have a lot of practicing to do before I reach my full potential as a writer. But I'm getting there.
Maslow said that only 1% of people are self-actualized--that is, they've reached their fullest potential. Which is so weird to think about, how the overwhelming majority of people aren't living to their fullest potential, aren't stepping into their ideal selves. I dunno about you, but I really wanna be a part of that 1%. Just imagine what you could accomplish, who you could be. People accomplish plenty without reaching their full potential, so...damn.
So, what would your ideal self be like? Who would you be if you reached your fullest potential?