�Self-sufficiency� is the quality of feeling secure and content with oneself, a deep-rooted sense of inner completeness and stability. On a superficial level, it�s similar to �secure self-esteem� � it�s an estimation of oneself as a worthy and decent person. But it goes deeper than secure self-esteem, in that it�s not just a cognitive but also an affective state � that is, it�s a feeling of fundamental wholeness and well-being.
Rather than thinking in terms of �high� or �low� � as with self-esteem � it seems more appropriate to use the terms �weak� and �strong� for self-sufficiency. People with strong �self-sufficiency� aren�t too concerned with other people�s opinions of them. Slights don�t affect them so much, because they have a deep-rooted sense of their own worth. Conversely, praise and blame don�t affect them too much either, so that they never become too carried away with their own good fortune or self-importance.
The same applies to negative or positive life events: people with strong �self-sufficiency� are less likely to be de-stabilised by them. This doesn�t mean that they�re inhuman monsters who don�t feel any emotion, just that they have a strong internal �centre of gravity� which means that they�re likely to be stoical and philosophical about negative events, and to bounce back quickly. Their inner sense of well-being and completeness means that they�re more resilient to the vicissitudes of life.
The ultimate goal of the Continuum of Care approach should be getting people to be self sufficient and being able to find resources and hel when they need it.