Self-actualization is one of the key human needs. None of us feels completely satisfied before we acknowledge and show the others our proper potential. Actualizing our potential is not an easy task because only a few people live in conditions that favor their self-actualization. Many economic, social, and individual barriers may arise on the way to realizing our full potential. Some people simply do not have enough time or wealth to develop in the right direction, the others have more urgent needs to fulfill. From this perspective, self-actualization is an unachievable goal – we know that we could do better under certain circumstances we do not have.
Philosophers define a few patterns that may help people to actualize. A variety pattern promotes an overall development – learning and doing a little of everything can make people well-rounded. Dominant theme pattern, on the other hand, concentrates on defining one major interest and evaluating it over all others. A specific approach is more likely to bring a profound knowledge and exceptional skills that are necessary for a person to make a success. The last pattern seems more reasonable as people cannot make an outstanding performance in too many areas. Nevertheless, this approach has its drawbacks.
Seeking the dominant theme pattern, people expose themselves to certain risks. Not all of them can figure out what they are the best at or which of their interests is the largest. It especially concerns talented individuals who are good at several activities – apparently, they cannot give up most their interest to proceed in a chosen one, but at the same time, they are unlikely to develop fast in all directions.