Why Self-Determination Is More Important Than You Think

Sivabalan T
Mar 7, 2019 · 2 min read
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Everyone needs an important factor to be disciplined and successful. Can you guess it? It is self-determination. The word itself feels motivational, doesn’t it? What is self-determination and how does one become self-determined? It is going to sound simple but a bit hard to follow it as it requires a lot of determination and focus.

The Self — Determination Theory ( SDT) is concerned with supporting our natural or intrinsic tendencies to behave in effective and healthy ways. This theory was initially developed by Edward L. Deci and Richard M. Ryan and has been elaborated and redefined by many people across the globe. According to this theory, people need to acquire the following to achieve their psychological growth

Competence — Mastery of tasks and learn different skills

Connection — Experience a sense of belonging to other people

Autonomy — Control their own behaviors and goals

To simplify it further, self-determination is believing that you can control your own destiny. It is a combination of an individual’s attitudes and abilities to achieve goals that they set for themselves. It is also about making their own choice, learning how to solve problems effectively, taking up responsibilities and complete control of situations. Self-determination is especially critical in the social environment and the workplace.

In a social environment, a sense of belonging is very critical to becoming a self-determined person. Consciously build positive relationships with people will not only help you achieve your goals but also offer support and feedback to people in your circle.

In the workplace, positive people tend to feel more engaged and motivated. However, can these self-determined people help other coworkers to reach their level? Managers and leaders can allow their team members to take on a more active role, offer them bigger responsibilities, give them continuous feedback, and encourage them.

Instead of writing down the best practices or sharing hacks to be self-determined, I would like to share an image that will give a better understanding of how to become a more self-determined individual.

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The above image is simple but it has some powerful insights. More importantly, each one of us has to understand ourselves well in the first place to become a self-determined person.

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