3A New Model forEmpowered Living

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Courage is not the absence of despair;it is, rather, the capacity tomove ahead in spite of despair.

ROLLO MAY

Building on Abraham Maslow’s model of the hierarchy of needs,1 I conceive of empowerment in life and work as a four-level continuum. Empowerment begins with the most basic human relationship—your relationship with yourself. If your self-concept and way of viewing yourself is secure and loving, you have the foundation for constructing positive, healthy relationships with others. As this is achieved, you gain strength and support to become effective in the world, using your abilities for your own good and for the good of the world around you. Finally, empowerment builds to the most expansive dimension—your ...

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