Being in Space |||

The Mission: Self-Actualization

I am slowly putting together longer-form ideas into some shape–maybe an artifact–and will share longer writings here (chapters) for paying members.


Self-actualization is being seen by the world, the way you see yourself.

Supposedly simple, but only on its surface. How does one know oneself? How can you put language on the different ways you are yourself?

Philosophy tells us you can reflect (self-report) based on prompts, seek understanding and data points, and look at a mental mirror. That is limited by a current faculty of being. You can’t see yourself outside the current form of being.

The shortest path to seeing ourselves in new ways is relationally (with others). When we talk to others, we don’t know what they’re going to say, and that fact alone invites the openness needed to say things we didn’t know we thought. One of the process goals of self-actualization is putting language on our intuition.

Realtime (synchronous) communication is the best canvas for learning more about how and who we might be. On-the-fly sense-making asks us to find language to the meaning we hold instead of reading scripts (media) we prepared earlier.

Meaning-first communication is person-first communication. It is meaning what we say as a way of making a living and existing in the world. The alternative is fitting words to the grooves of social norms, meaning be damned.

In communication itself, we can think of words as the interface and meaning as the value. Tired language is an ineffective interface, and reductive (asking you to fit in) spaces don’t seek meaning. But when both sides are ready to communicate on the meaning level and miss the words, there is an opportunity for self-actualization. Where the individual can learn more about their way of being and be seen by others in the same way, such an instance will promote generative value. By generative value, we mean being useful when we leave the room. For example, if a coach can help an individual see themselves anew while seeing them the way they feel themselves to be, there is a chance this practice can continue outside the coaching environment.

When we consider how others are seeing us, we must consider mediation. Externalities, such as culture or norms, can average a sense of being. Under this lens, individuality and diversity (not fitting in) might render a negative sense of being (for the self), but I argue that mediated communication is no communication at all. It is not embodied and hence can hold no meaning. And being seen is an embodied activity.

We should not factor social/media into personal value because it is asynchronous and mediated by meaningless agents (algo’s). Economically, it holds tremendous risk because there is only circumstantial value for the individual rather than self (authored) value. Since the circumstances are not disembodied, they will inevitably change (say, when a platform makes a business decision), and our journey to self-actualization (and livelihood) is affected.

So, we are slowly framing self-knowledge and unmediated communication as allies in our perpetual curiosity about our ideas and how we might change the world.

Up next Movement How do we sense movement before we get anywhere? As we see more complexity and how norms limit us with cause-and-effect thinking, we begin to move, Brief, Prompt, Practices Below is a chapter in progress on the difference between briefs and prompts (for people, not algorithms). I start by posting the earlier text on the
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