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Psychological aspects of the meaning of life in early adolescence

I found that the most interesting person among my friends is myself.

(S. Kierkegaard)

Many psychologists define the period of early adolescence as important, unique, but at the same time difficult, critical, and conflict. A developing personality suddenly discovers that within it there is a whole new world of experiences that lives by its own laws, a world frightening and alluring at the same time. The main psychological acquisition of this period, according to Spran-gehr, is the discovery of the "I", my inner world, the development of reflection and self-awareness. As noted by I.S. Kon, the discovery of his inner world is a very important, joyful and exciting event, but it causes a lot of disturbing, dramatic experiences.

S. Hall, believing that ontogenesis repeats the main stages of phylogenesis, correlated adolescence and youth with the era of romanticism. Apparently, at a certain stage in the development of mankind in the first case and of each particular person - in the second, the need to separate oneself, to isolate oneself from others in order to open oneself, one's “I” is born with necessity. This stage is unthinkable without going into oneself, listening to oneself, one’s feelings.

Most researchers believe that at this age stage, the person experiences his “rebirth”. But few psychologists, studying this age, directly related to the problem of loneliness. But it is precisely at this age that loneliness is subjectively perceived as a disease. We would say "personality growth disease." The soul of a young man or girl is eager to discover a new world of feelings and emotions for her, but, faced with misunderstanding, she realizes how catastrophically alone she is in this Universe.

In youth, a deeper and longer feeling comes, and most importantly, as a rule, independent of external causes and experienced as “vague anxiety or a feeling of inner emptiness that needs to be filled with something.” It is the feeling of inner emptiness that is one of the main subjective indicators of loneliness - this has been identified empirically in many foreign studies. But the question arises: why is there a void inside, because objectively it may not be? For this age group, many negative experiences, in our opinion, can be explained by the marginal ™ (intermediateness) position of boys and girls. No wonder this age is called “transitional” - transitional from the world of childhood to the world of adulthood.

Conscious of themselves sometimes as adults, independent people, focusing more on external changes that occur as a result of physical maturation, many internally still remain children. This is evidenced even by the fact that from the age of 16, young men and women begin to focus mainly on their own internal, rather than external, criteria when evaluating themselves and their actions (according to research by D. Ellis, W. Gemen, W. Katzenmeier) . The system of values, their worldview, and the idea of ​​happiness develop in the majority only by the age of 17-18. All that time (from 13-14 years), while self-awareness is growing, while from diffuse self-esteem turns into a stable, developing personality periodically or constantly experiences loneliness. Existing ties with the world do not suit her, and new ones have not crystallized yet. In addition, only at this age a person begins to become aware of things hitherto unknown to him (for example, that he is not only a member of his family, a student of some class, but also a resident of the Earth). Expanding, the boundaries of correlating oneself with others, with the world as a whole bring new feelings of one's own involvement in everything, but also make it clear, on the other hand, its “insignificance” even on the scale of an imaginable Universe, which brings additional negative experiences. This process is different for everyone - more or less conflicting, painful, more or less long - it all depends on personality traits, development conditions, etc. According to K. Conrad, youth “possesses“ schizoid ”properties. Therefore, for a “schizoid” teenager, it proceeds dramatically and painfully, and for a “cycloid” one it is easy, because the type of his personality balances age-related tendencies (inclination to withdraw, self-observation, etc.). ”

Is the appeal to "poetry" for most young men and women that saving straw that helps to overcome the symptoms of personality growth disease? As many domestic psychologists (L.S. Vygotsky, L.I. Bozhovich, N. B. Berkhin, Z. N. Novlyanskaya) note that of all forms of creativity, literary, poetic creativity is the most characteristic of adolescence.

Our work with students of the 10th (pedagogical) class of a secondary school in Moscow confirmed this fact. About 60% of students, that is, almost 2/3 of students write poetry (mainly lyrics). Of these, half (about 50%), along with the appeal to the lyrics, keep diaries. Most students started writing poetry recently.

It should be noted that the study of the psychological characteristics of literary (and generally artistic) creativity presents certain difficulties, which consist in the insufficient development of a system of methods for studying this type of creativity (especially its personal aspect). This is connected with the choice of the methods we use: analysis of the products of creativity (verses) and interviews - a universal and necessary method of obtaining information about the subjective world of people, the motives of their activities.

We have developed a questionnaire “I and my work”, which consists of five main points:

1. When did you start thinking of yourself as a "poet"? Was there a moment when you felt different from others?

2. To whom do you address your poems? Who can understand them better?

3. Mark, if possible, the stages of your creative process.

4. How do you feel (feel) at the beginning and at the end of the work? Can you say that you changed at the end of the next creative work?

5. What do you think about the reasons for the sudden rise / decline of creativity? Recall examples of such periods in your life.

The openness of the questions assumed a free form of answers, which, in turn, made it possible to obtain a fairly deep and detailed idea of ​​the subjective world of the young poet.

The results obtained have convinced us of how varied, due to the uniqueness of each person, the conditions that determine the need for poetic creativity.
However, for many, the lyrics are closely connected with the intimate sphere of experiences. So, the majority (mostly girls) are called as the most emotionally significant conditions that determine the need for creativity: mismatch of emotional ratings (in friendship, love), misunderstanding, rejection by others.

Poetic creativity at this age is important in that it helps to expose, objectify their main psychological problems: problems of uniqueness, uniqueness and loneliness; problems of the relationship between “I” and the outside world (“I” and “Other”). Thus, an emotionally significant personal problem arising as a result of a semantic discrepancy between the “I” and the “Other” is deeply experienced, as a result of which the young poet is trying to somehow resolve this situation for himself. As suggested by M.M. Bakhtin, only in art as in the “new plane of being” is a meeting of the “semantic worlds” of I and the “Other” possible, resulting in a “semantic transformation of being” for the young creator. Trying to free himself from the painful feeling of ambiguity, the misunderstood ™, he turns to "poetry" (without realizing it to the end) as a "decision on meaning", with the aim of discovering a new meaning primarily for himself. Thus, mastering the lyrical way of self-expression, a young man (or girl) masters the way of self-knowledge, which helps him in realizing his internal problems.

This fact is also indicated by the results of the content analysis of the interview: the most significant are the relationships (categories) “I - creativity” and “Creativity - I”. This emphasizes the importance, on the one hand, of personal experiences, which are internal incentives for creativity, and on the other, the importance of treating one’s creativity as a way of “facilitating”, “calming” (from the statements of the poets themselves), and resolving personal conflicts.

Although for many people the need for creativity is mediated by external causes (“Other - I”, “Another - creativity”), it is important, significant, it is mainly for oneself, as if “closing on the“ I “” of the young poet. Regarding their work as an opportunity to comprehend the surrounding reality, relationships with others, many of them, first of all, want to “explain something to themselves,” for example: “how does a person relate to me, where he coincides, where he doesn’t” (according to the creators themselves). In this regard, it can be said that artistic (poetic) creativity, in a certain sense, takes on the job of experiencing, living personal problems.

After analyzing the theme of poems, we saw that most of the young poets care about expressing themselves in the world through direct conversation from themselves, from their position. Therefore, it is natural that they turn to the poetic genre, which does not require complex mediation of the “I” - the hero. In youthful poetry, the lyrical hero is practically inseparable from the poet himself. M.M. Bakh-tin, describing common typical cases of the author’s attitude to the hero, calls such a hero a hero of romanticism.

The inseparability, the unity of the author and the hero leads to the fact that many verses turn out to be “projective,” that is, the poet’s intimate experiences are reflected in them as in a drop of water. Few at this age consider their work as an opportunity through him to say something else, to share what he learned, discovered, understood. For many boys and girls, poetry is not a means of communication with others, but mainly with oneself. We give one example. Lisa G. (16 years old):

She began to write somewhere in 12-13 years. The first was a song, she herself wrote music and poetry.

I’m actually writing for myself, because I’m afraid that it’s hard for me to understand. I do not express my thoughts well. Every word I have means something special. If I show anyone, it’s only to calm down. Everyone is waiting for a man who can really understand me.

First, I have a desire to do something (because of my mood), I sit down and start writing what I feel. But, basically, these are separate thoughts, quatrains or a terribly long and boring rubbish. And then I process it. But then rarely do I like what I wrote.

Immediately (when the poem is finished) I want to do something else, but after a few minutes I feel terribly sad, and I often think about life or even cry.

I have it (a sudden rise in creativity) - spontaneously. Usually when I listen to good music. Or something happened before that. Sometimes I don’t undertake this business for months, and sometimes (though rarely) I write several times a day. One of her poems:

What have I done in this life, what?

Good and happiness or nothing?

What will I be proud of after?

And will people remember me?

Why did you live? Can I answer myself?

Will I be able to calmly meet my death,

Saying: "I did everything that I could?"

And remember how life lived?

Ile, maybe I will die silently

And curse your life (yourself, or rather) ...

Loneliness, as you know, is generated by the loss of the meaning of being a personality. And artistic creation, an appeal to art just gives the young man or girl the opportunity to “work out”, to take a fresh look at their personal problems; in parallel with "poetry" "to carry out work on the creation of meaning."

We believe that literary (poetic) creativity in the following way affects the formation of significant life meanings in early adolescence. It helps the formation of self-awareness and has a positive effect on self-esteem (helping to "identify" those feelings, emotions that embrace the young poet). Creativity in many respects influences the attitude to another (if in real life for a young poet deep interpersonal communication is a great value and an equally big problem, then his own creativity creates a unique opportunity for communication with others in a different plane of life - “soul with soul is talking"). Under these conditions, the attitude towards the world as a whole changes (A.A. Melik-Pashaev calls this an aesthetic attitude to reality). Even barely touching poetry, a young man or girl for the rest of their life gets the experience of a different attitude to the world, to being, to themselves.
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