Ever wondered why the culture of social media, like Facebook, grow so big? The answer lies in their ability to tap our desire to seek appreciation. People don’t usually go shopping alone because it’s always better to have someone whose opinion you can take. Opinion and approval, often go hand in hand these days. We recently held a poll asking our readers whether they “look for appreciation for what they do?” The results are in and here’s an analysis of the current appreciation seeking trend.
Psychology behind seeking Validation
There are two ways to look at it. First, is that you have very low self-esteem. This makes one seek appreciation from outside, just to get by with life. Your entire functioning depends on what others have to say about everything you. second, is that you are a narcist. The desire to seek appreciation now changes, as you feel entitled to it. So, while in the first case, depression followed rejection, in this case, anger and arrogance do.
What one needs to identify is whether you want appreciation, or you demand appreciation. You want appreciation when you know that even if you don’t get it, it’s all right. You demand it when the lack of appreciation turns your world upside down. So, those who believe that they don’t look for appreciation in whatever they do, good for you. Others have some cause for concern.
Is looking for Appreciation always bad?
Not really. You see, humans are a mysterious species. What works for one, may not work for another. Take this for example. Let’s say that you completely stop seeking validation. Life sounds good and happy since you are your own end. You don’t need something from outside to make you feel whole. The problem sets in when this attitude disrupts our moral compass. Anything that satisfies us becomes all right, even if it has ethical implications.
I mean, think about the concept of heaven and hell. The actions of a person of faith are always guided by what they believe is the will of God. So, while they might not look for appreciation from humans, they seek it from the Almighty. This line of thought can be taken in a negative sense too, where in order to seek validation from peers, youngsters start doing drugs. Thus, maintaining a healthy balance between the two poles becomes essential.
Getting over the Demand for Appreciation
The demand for appreciation is what needs to be removed from our system. A general rule of thumb to get over this is introspection. Re-wiring your brain to adjust to the reality that seeking appreciation for everything is not worth it. The antidote to this was given by Philosopher Immanuel Kant. He suggested that people consider others and themselves as “ends within themselves” rather than “mere means”. Which can simply be understood as our own approval being enough.
However, one also needs to develop the sense of right and wrong in them. Too much rejection of appreciation can also lead to us rationalizing even our wrong actions. The key lies in assessing both the negative and positive feedback and highlighting the central themes. So, while you shouldn’t care about the people who didn’t like your latest Instagram post, it will be important for you to not slide things that are hurtful to others. The best way to navigate through these waters is to analyze the effect that your actions have on others.