Karen Horney Self Realization

1875 Words 8 Pages
Karen Horney, Self-Realization, and Neurotic Society

The striving towards self-realization is present in each of us, regardless if we consciously choose to grow, learn, or improve ourselves. In fact, we don't have to do anything at all and the driving force in us will lead us towards development and growth. However, it doesn't mean that it will lead us in the right direction, and neither it means that allowing ourselves to by driven by this unconscious mechanism will enable us to become the best version of ourselves.

Karen Horney, a German psychoanalyst, developed her theories about this automatic drive of self-realization. We are simply programmed to adapt to our environment, fight for our survival, and strive towards expressing our personality
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In her book “<a target="_blank" href="https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0393307751/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=6738&creativeASIN=0393307751&linkCode=as2&tag=mindmast08-21&linkId=23c9661fcf90ad8fbd9d24c856f3f5c1">Neurosis and Human Growth: The Struggle Towards Self-Realization (-- removed HTML --) (-- removed HTML --) ”, Horney explains in detail the causes, effects, and the solution for the destructive forces of neurosis. She describes neurosis as a barrier that prevents us from experiencing life authentically and hijacks our understanding of ourselves and the world in general.

Although these days neurosis is hardly ever mentioned in a professional psychological setting, it penetrates our culture and society. It is evident if we merely take a look at the yearly amount of administered anti-depressants, widely spread apathy lurking just behind a corner, prevalent disorders resulting from stress (such as adrenal exhaustion), social conflicts and confusions related to basic identity, and prevalent narcissism based on the compulsive taking of selfies, hypocrisy regarding a diet, and obsession with with fitness and body appearance. If I was to give my first-impression opinion on the general population, I would say that we are clearly unhappy and we are trying to fill the void with something very
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Only to the extent to which he gives up his false pride can he become less hostile to himself and evolve a solid self-confidence. Only as his shoulds lose their coercive power can he discover his real feelings, wishes, beliefs, and ideals. Only when he faces his existing conflicts has he the chance for a real integration – and so forth.”

- Karen Horney, 'Neurosis and human growth: the struggle toward self-realization', p. 334

Separating and distancing ourselves from the false wishes, claims, and ideals is quite similar to the (-- removed HTML --) Jungian process of individuation (-- removed HTML --) where we embark on a journey of making the unconscious conscious and as a result we separate the Self from the collective unconscious.

The journey like this can take many years – how could we possibly know what is false and what is true in us? It takes a great deal of self-honesty and the ability to face what's unconscious in us and what we would prefer to avoid. It's all about the process, not the

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