The Perfect World

I was sitting in the children’s corner at our church. Whilst blowing a stubborn curl out of my face, I was carefully drawing my imaginary picture of heaven on a piece of old computer paper. What world could be more perfect than heaven? The streets where made of gold, and the waterfalls filled with berry juice. When I sang, it sounded like an angel. The sun never set and I could do whatever I loved all day long.

Everyone has a picture of the perfect world. I still remember my naïve-9-year-old-picture like it was yesterday. So much, yet so little has changed since then. My picture today is simple; in my perfect world everyone would be living a life of self-actualization.

Abrahim Maslow uses the term self-actualization to describe the on-going process of fully developing your personal potential. When I first looked at the hierarchy of human needs, it seemed obvious that the urge for food, water, safety, security, love, belonging and self-esteem must be fulfilled before you reach the top of the pyramid; self-actualization. It makes sense that the environment you find yourself in plays an enormous role in your current need. Sadly but truly, some people have no choice but to focus on basic needs like food and water. Others will do anything to have a great self-esteem and social belonging. I believe that with the right mind set and support system, a life of self-actualization for everyone is not too far-fetched.

A few key elements which I think are important in order to become everything that you’re capable of becoming:

1. Close your eyes and picture yourself 10 years from now. Dream big, think of your purpose and imagine every detail.

2. Open your eyes and start living towards that you. Turn your wishful thinking into doing.

3. Accept your imperfections and use them in your favour.

4. Go where the energy is, surround yourself with inspirational people.

5. It is important to understand that self-actualization is a process, not a goal and that the emphasis is on your individual potential.

Henry David Thoreau said that; “Most men lead lives to quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.” I can’t help but wonder whether these people did not make their dreams bite-size for others to handle? They couldn’t possibly have fulfilled their individual potentials. When you become everything you are capable of becoming, true joy, purpose and peace arises, while anger, greed and jealousy fades. This would already solve a handful of problems facing the world today. I can only imagine everyone doing what they are extremely good at and passionate about. Earthly things will become less important, life will become more interesting and joy will become an every-day thing.

In my perfect world, everyone will use their opportunities and build their streets with gold. Life would be filled with the sweetness of joy, purpose, peace and love. No one will go to grave with their songs still in them and the sun will never set on anyone because doing what you love means living in the light.