Encountering oneself

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Paul A. Girling
Cite this article:  Girling, P. (1981). Encountering oneself. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 1(1), 1-4.

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To be and become the person we truly are is a pervasive theme in third force psychology. In this paper, I succinctly summarize how we become ourselves by focusing on 5 distinct dimensions of personality functioning. Freeing oneself from an idealized self-image and experiencing the real self is seen as a beginning phase. A cognitive restructuring involving modifying internalized value orientations is then stressed. Assuming responsibility for one’s choices and initiating self-direction is encouraged to develop authentic personhood. The growing person is conceptualized as being open to inner experiences and viewing one’s life as a fluid process involving change and risk taking. Finally, vitality is generated and sustained by receptivity to one’s inner life.
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