Hierarchy of Human Needs

This is Abraham Maslow‘s Hierarchy of Human Needs. I think it’s a marvelous approach to self-improvement. It was a handout in my Literature-based Research class, but I’ve learned that it embodies the humanist school of psychology, which Maslow founded.

  1. Physiological: the need to satisfy hunger, thirst, and other bodily preoccupations.
  2. Safety/security: the need to be out of danger.
  3. Belongingness: the need for affiliation with others, a sense of being loved or accepted.
  4. Esteem: the need to gain approval and recognition.
  5. Cognitive: the need to know, to understand, to explore
  6. Aesthetic: the need for symmetry, order and beauty.
  7. Self-actualization: the need to experience self fulfillment, to realize one’s full potential. The self actualizing person is one who is:
    • Not afraid of the unknown and can tolerate doubt, uncertainty, and tentativeness that accompany the perception of the new and unfamiliar.
    • Not ashamed of his/her human nature with its shortcomings, imperfections, frailties, and weaknesses.
    • Not hampered by conventions but does not flout conventions merely for the sake of doing so.
    • Missioned-oriented on the basis of an uncoerced sense of responsibility, duty, or obligation.
    • Respectful of others and tries to understand their perspectives.
    • Attuned to the opportunities of solitude and privacy as well as of social interaction.
    • Fully conscious of personal responsibility for actions and for growth, not blaming others or charging others with the task motivation.
    • In awe of the wonder of the everyday world and of life’s limitless possibilities.
    • Possessed of a deep and unconditional empathy for human beings in general.
    • Humble in his/her recognition of what he/she knows in comparison to what could be known and acknowledges others as teachers, respecting everyone as a potential contributor to his/her knowledge.
    • Highly ethical and at least intuitively aware of Kant’s famous categorical imperative, which charges us to “Act only according to principles which we can will also to be universal laws.”
    • Philosophical and possessed of an unhostile sense of humor
    • Visionary but not inclined to impose his/her beliefs on others.
    • Alive!
    1. Self-transcendence: the need to connect to something beyond the self and to move toward a meaningful selflessness through that connectedness.
    Maybe this is old news for some, but it’s given me plenty to think about.

    1. You should take a psychology class I think you’d really enjoy it. We covered this in detail when I took it. =)

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