A couple of days, I attended a poetry reading and it is somewhat an unusual thing of me to do because, come on, who has time for such things? Sit on one place, listen to people read out or recite their own poems or perform something they have taken years to perfect? But unlike what I would have expected, there were quite a few people, just like me, who were present and sitting patiently in the Sunday afternoon sun, waiting for their friends to get on the stage and perform. I was there to encourage and support one of the closest friends I have. I did that because it seemed like the right thing to do, because, well, I know I would want people close to me, come see me perform or just be there for me.
Through the evening, I saw quite a few brilliant performances, that were to say the least, mesmerizing; and like I mentioned to my friends later that night, I couldn’t have been more happy to have spent that evening the way I did and the smile that I saw spread across her face was one of a kind.
In the poetry community, one snaps if one can relate to what the poet is reciting and at this being my first, I couldn’t get the hang of it but as the hour passed by, I felt in my comfort zone. By the end of the evening, I was snapping and laughing because I could relate to everything that was being said, by so many those artists who could snip their words like one would spin cotton – candy.
The point of this entire vast introduction is that everyone needs and wants to be appreciated. Every single person wants to know that they are liked and accepted as a part of the social group they would want to belong to. Maslow’s theory states that the human brain looks after its physical needs first and then moves on the social needs like love, acceptance and appreciation; of oneself and of others. Psychologists have proved it time and again that appreciation or just the fact that you are acknowledged for a certain activity that you have undertaken, is the need of the human Ego. The brain likes and understands positive emotions better and it craves for the same.
While doing my research, I stumbled upon these two articles which talk about the psychological need for appreciation.
To conclude, I would also like to touch upon the sociological or the emotional need for appreciation among the youth. Those of us who belong to orthodox or semi – liberal Indians families are not aware of continuous appreciation or acknowledgement and we do look for it among our teachers and peers. The emotional need for appreciation rises from the need for acceptance into a new social setting or as a sense of validation from friends. What I realized that evening was that, when you do put your heart and soul in something, if nothing else, you do feel nice or at ease when you are appreciated by others, who are a part of your community or social group. What I also realized was the fact that it doesn’t take too much effort to let the person know that you can relate to what they are saying or like what they are doing. This is possibly the smallest form of acknowledgement, but the most important for the person receiving it.
IRIANS – The Neuroscience Institute