Intro To Actualize
Table of Contents
How Does Actualize Help you Self-Actualize?
How To Make the Most Out of Your Time in Actualize
Who is Actualize For?
How Does Actualize Help you Self-Actualize?
Resources (Homework) - Self Awareness
At the end of your journey with Actualize, we want you to walk away with a tool belt of practically applicable takeaways that you can use and see the results of.
We want to provide you with tools you can apply in your personal, social, and career life the day you read it, during (in activities), or immediately after our general body meetings so that you can see the effectiveness of these tools in action. While some of the tools we provide can show results immediately (eg. walking into a room confidently with chest out and shoulders back with a smile to greet a new person) other tools will only show a change that can be noticed over time (eg. the impact that a gradually increasing self-awareness has on your life).
You will have to understand the principles at hand that indicate what tools to use in each situation to be the most effective and essentially when to use it. We will not be able to provide all the tools necessary to deal with every situation, but as this database develops over time and as you find more of your own tools to deal with things in the world through your exploration of the world, together we can encompass quite a bit.
I will not give you a tool I have not used myself and I will not give you information that I don’t think is practically applicable in your journey to self-actualization. It is necessary to test the tools beforehand not only so that I know it works, but to thoroughly understand, through experience why it works. Our hope is that providing our experiences, or embodied information/tools/principles, will make it easier to apply in your own lives. Illustrating how we apply the information makes it easier to digest and act on.
I will illustrate the information embodied and with personal experience (to help you in self-actualization)- and will not give something I haven’t tried myself.
Meaningful Additional Readings
We will provide resources such as books, links to articles or studies, videos, music, and so forth to help you in your journey to understanding the concepts and tools we provide. These are resources that we think will meaningfully contribute to the central idea, more specifically these are resources that we hope will help you get a real understanding of the spirit of the idea beyond the framework and structuring of information as we provide it to you.
We will also give you descriptions of the resources we provide and why we think that they can be valuable to your journey. You can make the most of the resources we provide by asking yourself questions of what you want to understand specifically in relation to the central idea we are presenting. We recommend reading the resources which align with that which would best aid in your understanding of the idea, not just reading everything we provide (because may be a waste of your time to read about any one of the aspects of the idea that you already understand). Alternatively, you may not know what you don't know and you may have to explore and read into the material a bit deeper to understand where the shortfalls in your knowing of the subject matter are (To further specify what you want to understand of something or in order to develop the questions you have), and that is fine too. It can be hard to specify what your curiosity is, and a reading list can be helpful especially when you’re interested in delving into an idea and don't fully know why.
However, keep in mind that we can only provide so many resources- I will only provide the resources which most helped me conceptualize the spirit of the idea I am presenting in my own head, but this may not be all the information you need to conceptualize it in yours. The information most relevant to you on your own journey to understanding ideas we present and to self-actualization as a whole may only be found by you yourself.
I recommend being specific about the ideas you are curious about and the questions you have so that you can know what to look up or ask us about if you can’t find anything online.
To illustrate: In my personal experience, if I find a book I’m specifically interested in after narrowing down my curiosity I usually learn a lot more and also find many other interesting interconnected (to what I already know) ideas that relate my curiosity (and are meaningful to the web of all things I have been curious about in the past).
Structure for information
In the articles on our website and in the presentations we do, we will give you a structure for the information. How we think about the material and how it all connects in our minds in a single framework for action is crucial to our ability to apply the information in a meaningful way. We want to break down all this information into the simplest possible thing. I have been in the self-actualization literature for years now and may be able to break it down information in meaningful ways and as it connects to the rest of the information on emotional intelligence and self-actualization. This being said, that does not mean that my structuring of information will be best for you, and that is also why we will provide the resources we have used and further, why we recommend taking your own notes and then questioning your understanding of the material so that you can structure and encode it as it best fits in your own mind if you think the information is significant enough to do so (to want to apply in your own life that is).
It's Up to You
We can only give you what we think are important, as can any other teacher. We will give you a tool belt and we will explore ideas which have been useful in our own lives and can be useful to you. We will give you recommended books, articles, videos which we believe will help you get an understanding of an idea that we know is important or meaningful (spirit of the concepts at play). We can only provide you with our way of looking at the world, our way of structuring information for digestion. But ultimately the choice is up to you when it comes to how to act, how to structure your frameworks and view of the world, and finding or knowing the materials which will best help you in your journey to self-actualization.
Journey of an Individualist Community: General Body Meetings- Effective Relationships and Social Awareness
One of the most useful things the Actualize community can do in the development of your ideas is to challenge your beliefs- to refine and reinforce current beliefs you hold or to update and accept more complete and encompassing beliefs. After being challenged, if your beliefs are reinforced you can be more confident in your actions (application of the beliefs), and if you update your beliefs you can live a much better life. This can be difficult however because we don’t always consciously know why we do or believe something even if we find it important or meaningful in some way. But when you do challenge what you believe (and find the ‘why’ behind doing things (it is always interesting to seriously and in the spirit of introspection ask and discover why you do certain things or think the way you do)), it becomes infinitely more meaningful- as the quote by Nietzsche goes, “He who has a Why to live can bear almost any How”.
Actualize is a community of people pursuing their own individual ideals (in emotional intelligence and otherwise). Discussions are helpful in Actualize because they can serve to illustrate the common community pursuit of this self-actualization, which is powerful and motivating to the individual.
What does this motivation look like? To illustrate the idea, a parallel can be drawn to soldiers going through boot camp together. It is tough as hell and people want to quit, and they would probably quit if they were immersed in such an intense mental and physical workout and beatdown on their own. But when you want to quit, you look into the eyes of the other soldiers around you and you see them similarly beat down, you wonder why they haven't quit, why they move forward regardless of their struggles. And you see the raw force of will carrying them forward and to oblivion if need be, and notice that you have this in yourself too thinking: “If they haven’t given up yet, hell if I’m going to give up”. It forms a bond of solidarity and of brotherhood and of not giving in because no one else is giving in and we can all get to the other side together if we stand together. This is self-actualization in a community: it is the incessant and never-ending pursuit of personal (and often common) ideals, to reach one’s fullest individual potential, but together. A community of people chasing their individual Logos (doing that which you know is most right), together, all unified in a common search for individual meaning.
Not only does the community serve as a means for motivation, it also can help the individual find the means for his own self-actualization through others. How can others help the individual self-actualize? They can share their own experiences and pursuits of self-actualization (tell you about aspects of life they are improving, things they’ve learned about themselves, ideas and tools which have helped them in some meaningful way), and with this you can get a better sense of both what people are doing (which gives you an idea what you can work on) and their processes for doing so (which can in turn help you know how to actualize something in a different manner if you are both working on a similar potential or idea).
For example, if a component of two Actualize member’s self-actualization includes fitness, as part of the same community, at the start or end of meetings they can share their ideas on their approach to fitness (training certain muscle groups, cardiovascular training methods) and if each is open and honest (to listen and share) about what they are doing it is likely that both will come away having learned something meaningful that can help each of them on their individual journeys to self-actualization in fitness.
And finally, discussions help you discover and map out your meaning with others. Deep conversations between members can lead both parties to clarify and develop their ideas and thinking, their philosophies and core motivations. It develops our thinking because, in the process of expressing our thoughts so that we are understood by another (trying to bridge the gap between Self and Other), we have to clarify and often work our ideas out in different forms. We have to listen more carefully to ourselves so as to make sure that the message received by the other is truly what we think, so that our ideas are not distorted in their minds. In explaining ourselves to others and because we have to listen carefully to ourselves to get our ideas properly to another, we become better at listening to ourselves. We think that because if the idea we are trying to get across is important enough for them to be listening to it wholly, it must be important- and we start listening to ourselves as a result. And because of these deep conversations resulting in our listening to ourselves, we become better at finding our own meanings when we are alone.
This happens when you are both in that same frame of mind, where you both are relatively interested in and open to one another and feel comfortable enough to explore and map out your unconscious to consciousness thinking. It is a sort of dance between two minds where both parties are searching and often finding something greater than what they started with because to an extent, being open to the depths of another and being vulnerable enough to share our own, we have to become more like them, and they become a bit more like us.
Both parties walk away a bit different, by participating in a truly meaningful deep conversation because we’ve seen a different world- we’ve seen into the mind of another. These conversations won’t happen with everyone or all the time, but we try to facilitate an environment in the club such that said conversations can happen. This idea is further developed in the ‘Why It Works’ section.
In our general body meetings we will have activities that will help you get a sense of the emotional intelligence competencies or tools we present to you by giving you a plane for action. These activities will test what you have learned and give you hands-on experience with an idea so you can grasp the concept more thoroughly- as it looks in action, not just in words. This is an opportunity to integrate the concepts taught and discussed into a practical and complex social environment. In regards to emotional intelligence, you can explore your own personal ideals in social interactions with a group of open minded and accepting people. On that note, we do not rely on specific social instructions, the general body meetings focus on the facilitation and growth of the individual's unique social ideal, and serve as a means to practice.
Why It Works
We can have such meaningful discussions and activities because we work to facilitate a culture of acceptance (unconditional positive regard), empathy, and openness, motivated by the humanist school of psychology. According to this school of thought, when people no longer feel the need to protect or hide themselves due to a threat in the social environment, or when they are accepted, they can explore themselves more readily and have the tendency to move towards greater maturity and reorganize their personality towards their ideal.
Being open and acceptant doesn’t mean you have to like everyone or agree with all their opinions. The ultimate goal is to understand ourselves to the point that we don’t have to close ourselves off to the outside environment in order to remain ourselves and keep our own ideas. It is valuable to accept other people’s experiences and perspectives as a meaningful contrast to your own, which can then enhance your perspective of the world. Understanding others so that they can explore their own meaning and so we can absorb new ideas- to add to our own understanding of the world.
We have a saying in our Actualize meetings, we recommend everyone to “come with an empty cup.” We encourage our members to be open in order to allow an individual to change and not be held to the structure of your preconception of them so that they can more effectively reach for and become their ideal. In other words, it is to see others as their potential self, not only their current self so that they can explore their potential with you.
Institutional Outlet (Involvement/Positions)
Why Does It Matter?
An institution is useful because it gives us a central theme, motivation, and time frame for which we must output work. We need to be constrained to some extent to be able to tap into our creative flow of potential. Otherwise, with infinite potential and no mediums for the expression of it, it all goes to waste (and thus you would be losing some potential of self-actualization). As an institutional outlet, Actualize allows you to tap into your potential to produce work that is meaningful to the people around you (helping the students who attend and growing the organization to reach more people- to people who are coming because they are interested by the central theme of the organization), and gives you a time constraint so you will output work that is faster than you would otherwise if you had an unspecified amount of time to output it.
Why it Works
The reason our club works and why we can all output meaningful work is because of openness, the lack of hierarchy, and our respect for each individual in an involvement position in their desire to do something (ex. output an article, create an event). If you want to put something out in the club and we (the e-board) disagree with what we understand of it, we will not typically just say no, instead we will ask you. If you think your idea is truly a good and important one, you should do your best to communicate how it can help people, how it connects to the theme of our club, how it contributes to the brand, etc.. As for the e-board, we are open enough to listen to your ideas, give specific feedback on it (in terms of it being possible or important enough to work on) and and then together we can decide whether or not to publish it or act it out or share it with our members. We truly encourage you to reach out if you have any ideas. The executive board is open to new ideas or resources that can help the organization and our members.
Of course, you should use your emotional intelligence skills and organizational awareness (reference the article on this competency) to know what is meaningful to who and who to talk to if you want to get something done. You also have to generally have buy in and influence over others (you have to be smart about how you approach it), then you can put it on your resume and talk about it with recruiters.
The openness of the executive board allows you to explore ideas and ways of doing things, and aspect of having to communicate what you want to do challenges and broadens your ideas- both contribute to your self-actualization.
While the ambassador isn’t completely in charge and is not the decision maker necessarily, don’t take this role lightly. You should communicate with the E-Board member above you if you have new ideas,(for example, a new way of structuring things) and they are encouraged to talk it out. You may be under the framework and guidance and the yes and no of the E-board but it can be meaningful.
Why You Should Join Actualize
Develop the Community Together
Being part of Actualize means you will be putting your energies into helping other individuals on their journey to self-actualization as a mentor. It is creatively exploring how you can add as much value to the lives of others as we all progress towards our best selves. For example, creating a community event which brings awareness to the importance of mindfulness or writing articles on self-awareness tools and concepts that can help others have a greater sense of self-awareness.
Authority and Influence
Being a part of the institution gives you a platform of influence and authority from which to act under, people respect the work you contribute more because they recognize it is coming from a reliable and high quality source as it is associated with the name and brand image of Actualize. The student body, especially those in the business school,knows the information is screened and thus the things that are displayed are meaningful and won’t be a waste of time to engage in.
Peer review of thoughts
Actualize helps the producer of work because they will get feedback on the work they are putting out. E-board members will screen the work before we allow it to be made public and associated with the club’s brand image and thus will refine the producer’s ideas to a level of organizational acceptance. Having others peer-review your work allows you to get a better eye for quality (the good) and helps you to be more aware of errors and shortcomings (the bad). Discovering the strengths and weaknesses of the work you output all contributes to your journey to self-actualization.
While creating things for the common good of the members of the club, you are also able to gain experience which you can use on your resume to help you in progression of your career. For example, if you think it would help you to be more competitive in being able to join a non-profit if you started a charity fundraiser with Actualize, you can use Actualize as the medium to do it. You can write articles and create presentations on self-actualization, plan community events, market the club, work with the finances and so forth. There is no reason not to use this club to achieve your long-term goals personal and career goals.
If you're smart about it, you can take this club and yourself to high places. In fact, the executive board of Actualize strongly encourages you to do so.
How To Make the Most Out of Your Time in Actualize!
Bring your best self to general body meetings- Try to live out your ideal personality, behaviors, and beliefs.
Get ready to be challenged and to question your beliefs as you interact with other club members.
Be open about your own perception of things so that people can see their own reality (from you), even if it is merely out of contrast with yours, and so they can challenge what you say so you can either reinforce or update your beliefs.
Step out of your comfort zone and speak up when you feel you should.
Think critically when participating in activities and try to connect the principles we have discussed in general body meetings to what we are asking you to do.
Get involved by applying to be an eboard member or an ambassador and mentor and bring out the highest potential in other club members.
Ask yourself questions about what you want to learn about for the readings or what you are struggling with and be specific.
Who is Actualize For?
We accept all majors because self-actualization is not limited only to business students. At the same time, we don't shy away from business because we are in a capitalist society and know that people want money, and the medium for that is business, and everyone is probably going to be involved in business to some extent in their career lives.
What We Won’t Give You at Actualize: Absolutes/Ideologies
We can't stick to a single framework, we can’t accept a single meaning is true. We have to watch the world and see what it has to offer, with an empty cup and hands out with palms upward to receive, not with a full cup already expecting what you will get out of the world otherwise you miss a substantial amount of meaning that the world has to offer.
We don’t want you to be like everyone else and we don’t want to mold you into an image of ourselves (as the eboard, or me as the leader of R&D more specifically) because while what works for me works for me, it may not work for you. We want you to be fully your own entity and to explore what is meaning to you.
DISCLAIMER: I am not a professional emotional intelligence coach, or a psychologist. I am an undergraduate student attending university and I have only been studying and guiding other students in their own paths to self-actualization for so long.