In this episode, we sit down with Scott Barry Kaufman, one of the most-influential and prolific psychologists working today, to discuss his new book, Transcend: The New Science of Self-Actualization.
Business Insider magazine named Kaufman one of the “50 groundbreaking scientists who are changing the way we see the world,” and you would likely agree after hanging out with him. In my experience, you feel seen, heard, respected, challenged, and above all, when you leave a conversation with Scott, you do so feeling either like you must work on your purpose in life from that point on, or you must work to find it.
In the show, we discuss our shared desire to bring humanistic psychology back to the forefront and walk through Kaufman’s re-imagining of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and trace Kaufman’s journey through Maslow’s unpublished journals about his unfinished theory of transcendence which Kaufman hopes to complete by picking up where Maslow left off just before his untimely death.
From Kaufman’s official bio:
Hi, I’m Scott! I’m a humanistic psychologist exploring the depths of human potential. I have taught courses on intelligence, creativity, and well-being at Columbia University, NYU, the University of Pennsylvania, and elsewhere. I am interested in using my research to help all kinds of minds live a creative, fulfilling, and self-actualized life.
I like to share my enthusiasm and knowledge of the science of potential through my books, teaching, self-actualization coaching, podcast, blog, articles, and speaking engagements. If you are interested in receiving personal self-actualization coaching from me, you can fill out the application here.
My writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Scientific American, Psychology Today, and Harvard Business Review. In my latest book Transcend: The New Science of Self-Actualization, I present a new hierarchy of human needs for the 21st century, one that allows for the fulfillment of individual potential as well as the actualization of transcendent purpose and peak experiences.
I host the #1 psychology podcast in the world— The Psychology Podcast—which has received over 17 million downloads and was included in Business Insider’s list of “9 podcasts that will change how you think about human behavior.”
A bold reimagining of Maslow’s famous hierarchy of needs–and new insights for realizing your full potential and living your most creative, fulfilled, and connected life.
When psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman first discovered Maslow’s unfinished theory of transcendence, sprinkled throughout a cache of unpublished journals, lectures, and essays, he felt a deep resonance with his own work and life. In this groundbreaking book, Kaufman picks up where Maslow left off, unraveling the mysteries of his unfinished theory, and integrating these ideas with the latest research on attachment, connection, creativity, love, purpose and other building blocks of a life well lived.
Kaufman’s new hierarchy of needs provides a roadmap for finding purpose and fulfillment–not by striving for money, success, or “happiness,” but by becoming the best version of ourselves, or what Maslow called self-actualization. While self-actualization is often thought of as a purely individual pursuit, Maslow believed that the full realization of potential requires a merging between self and the world. We don’t have to choose either self-development or self-sacrifice, but at the highest level of human potential we show a deep integration of both. Transcend reveals this level of human potential that connects us not only to our highest creative potential, but also to one another.
With never-before-published insights and new research findings, along with exercises and opportunities to gain insight into your own unique personality, this empowering book is a manual for self-analysis and nurturing a deeper connection not only with our highest potential but also with the rest of humanity.
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