We value having autonomy because we have an innate need for independence and agency over our actions.
Having autonomy enables us to act with willingness and purpose, enables self-determination that makes us feel in control. When our intentions and behaviour are aligned we experience harmony, which is essential for our psychological well-being and overall life satisfaction.
Freedom is an essential requisite for autonomy and is especially important in our individualist culture where our independence is valued.
When our autonomy is compromised, not only do we experience psychological distress because our intentions and behaviour are mismatched, we become unmotivated and dissatisfied with life.
Want to learn more?
Read all the details, including how this value presents itself through who we are, what we have, do, and need, in our Human Values Research Paper