Concept of Independence – In psychology, economics and politics

We explain what independence is, the origin of the term and what are psychological, economic and political independence.

Independence is being able to watch over your own existence without the control of others.

What is independence?

By independence we usually refer to the ability to act autonomously, that is, to be able to make their own decisions and ensure their own existence without the need for tutorials or controls from anyone. In other words, independence translates into the control of things that are their own and in making free decisions, without being subject to the discretion of third parties.

This is a term from Latin, composed of the voices in- (“Without”) and I will depend (“Hang on”, “submit to”), and that is applied to very different areas of life and knowledge, as an antonym of dependency. In general, it is a term with positive connotations, which can be used for people, institutions or even entire nations, and in areas as different as emotional life, politics or the economy.

Psychological or personal independence

psychological or personal independence
The human being goes from a total dependence towards a progressive independence.

In psychology and personal development, we refer to independence to indicate the margin of autonomy of individuals, that is, their ability to make their own decisions, undertake their own projects and, in general, decide on your own life without needing anyone’s supervision.

We are all born in a state of dependency, both physically and emotionally, since we are from the earliest age subject to the decisions of our parents. They are the ones who feed us, dress us, take us to school, and so on. It is expected of us, later on, that we will relieve them of this work, gradually making our own decisions and taking the helm of our lives.

The first clear signs of psychological or personal independence occur in adolescence, often in the form of rebellion. We are eager to make our decisions, even before we have the ability to reflect on them. But at the beginning of our adult life, we must definitely take command, and this implies taking responsibility for what we decide and for our own well-being.

Thus, a psychologically independent person will be able to plan and execute his life, without the need for someone to take her by the hand and tell her what is the right thing to do. That does not mean that you will not be wrong, but that you will take care of your mistakes, you will learn from them, and you will assume your freedom personal, emotional and existential with the responsibilities that they imply.

Political independence

Political independence obviously concerns nations and countries. A country is independent when it enjoys sovereignty over its territory and over social, economic and political activities. that take place in it. It encompasses territorial control through the armed forces, control of the bureaucracy and its effects on citizen life, and the power of decision regarding international treaties that the country signs or not.

The classic example of non-independent nations is constituted by the colonies: nations under the control of a foreign metropolis, from which even its laws are dictated and its rulers are decided.

Many present-day nations, in fact, acquired their sovereignty precisely through wars of independence, fought against the colonial empires of Europe. For example, the Latin American nations freed themselves from the control of Spain through a series of bloody wars for independence that began between 1804 and 1811.

Economic independence

economic independence
An economically independent country is capable of supporting itself.

The term “financial independence” has been used in various senses, depending on the context. In the most common and general, it can refer to economic solvency, that is, to the ability of an individual to face his debts and meet his needs without needing anyone’s help. In this sense, it is part of the requirements for an independent life, that is, for an autonomous adult life.

On the other hand, there has been talk of “economic independence” in the context of historical political debates, to refer to certain political and economic models with a developmental spirit, that is, that aspire to develop the productive potential of a country to make it self-sufficient, and then – only then – open to trade with the rest of the world.

This tendency thinks of the nation as an autonomous system, capable of sustaining itself instead of depending on foreign trade, which allows it to negotiate with other nations from a position of equality, and not of necessity.

These types of proposals are very common in nations that were European colonies, since their political liberation did not always bring economic autonomy, but many preserved the dependent production model that exports raw materials and imports products derived from it.