The article examines the concept of “acmeological abilities” in conjunction with the problem of an individual’s self-development. The whole set of an individual’s determinants influencing development of acmeological abilities is outlines. These abilities are considered in line with the main task of acmeology, namely, studying the objective laws, psychological mechanisms, conditions, and factors of a progressively developing mature personality. The performed review showed that problem of an individual’s abilities to self-development is not posed within the context of the psychological research on self-development itself.
The productive and unproductive motivation for self-development is considered. The productive motivation for self-development is spiritually and creatively oriented. An individual having motivation is internally free, pay less attention to external developmental goals (success, career, money); his/her orientation on self-development is dictated mainly by the solution of creative, professional, spiritual tasks. Productive self-development is possible if not external, but internal developmental goals of a moral, spiritual character are achieved. The external developmental goals (professional, financial) are important but do not come at the first place. The efficiency of this motivation is manifested through achievement of better personality integration and integrity due to the harmonious conjugation of the individual’s internal and external life activities. The unproductive motivation for self-development is developed at neurotic, rigid behaviour (for example, perfectionism, achievement seeking). In these cases, an individual’s self-development is determined by solution of internal tasks; improved personal performances in a profession, won competitions, etc. This motivation is unproductive because the integrity of personality development is disrupted due to the compensatory nature of self-development under unproductive interactions with people around.
The study identified the factors that contribute to or impede the implementation of acmeological abilities. The main factor stimulating an adult’s self-development is the need to solve complex professional and life problems that go beyond their actual and psychological competencies. The concept of “acmeological abilities” is correlated with the category of “auto-psychological competence”.
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