Understanding our basic human needs can bring us a better
awareness of our actions, emotions, behavior and why we
do the things we do. We’re often filled with conflicting desires.
One part of us wants to be happy, healthy, and self-aware.
Another part wants to be lazy, eat, sleep and have sex.
Your level of awareness doesn't remain the same all the time.
Sometimes your logic dominates your thinking, other times
your emotions get a hold on you.
That's why it's crucial to have the knowledge and understand
the importance of meeting your basic human needs!
Below you'll discover a mix of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs and
Tony Robbins 6 basic needs, plus additional needs that guide our lives.
(Meaning they will be sorted by importance, not chronologically
by authors, and as you go down more important needs are shown)
Human Needs Pyramid (Maslow's Hierarchy)
We as humans are motivated by a hierarchy of needs.
According to Maslow, we have five categories of needs:
-Love & Belonging
According to Tony,
the first four needs are defined as personality needs.
The last two are identified as the needs of the spirit.
These are rarer and not everyone meets these.
When these needs are met,
we truly feel fulfilled.
- Love & Connection
Survival/ Physiological Needs
Maslow considered physiological needs are the most
essential of our needs.
This is because we will always try to meet our physiological
For example, if you're extremely hungry or thirsty you will find
a hard time to focus on anything else besides food or water.
Having a place (shelter) where you can live and sleep.
Breathing, temperature regulation (clothes), are all in
the survival needs.
According to Maslow sexual reproduction is in this category
since it is essential for survival and evolution.
After our survival needs are being met, we require safety and security.
People want control in their lives, so this need for safety and
security plays a major role in behaviors at this level.
Moving into a safer neighborhood, finding a job, saving money
to a savings account, health care are actions motivated by safety needs.
We always aim to satisfy our physiological and safety needs
so we can simply survive.
I'm not going in-depth on survival & safety needs because
I'm assuming if you're reading this right now, you got these
two needs met more or less 😀
The need to feel secure and certain about the future.
With certainty almost always you try to avoid pain and gain pleasure.
We're all different in many aspects in what brings us certainty, so
the important question to ask yourself is what does your brain
say has to happen to be certain?
Certainty can trick you!
We generate this need from the primitive part of our brain
and that is the reptilian brain, who only cares about
keeping us safe and alive.
The trouble here is that your judgments might be faulty and
not truthful if you tend to be certain all the time.
You can get certainty in positive, or negative ways.
Negative ways you can get certainty:
-Eating too much food (makes you feel good short-term)
-Staying in a toxic relationship way too long to satisfy this need.
-Stay in our comfort zone and resist change
-You can be certain by praying in God, or some universal energy
that is guarding you and be certain that good things will happen.
- Finding and creating a sense of stability within yourself
What happens when you fulfill your need for certainty?
You get bored out of your mind!
That's why the next need you'll seek is your need for...
When you can predict things in life and every day you live
with the same events, life is not fun.
We all have routines, places we go regularly for lunch and
coffee and meet individuals we're accustomed to.
But life is boring if we do the same things over and over again.
Variety is the spice of life.
That's why we need surprise, adventure, excitement or challenge.
You can get variety by visiting new places, learning something new, grow your relationship on another level, making a shift
in something unknown, making new connections with people.
Or you can get variety in negative ways such as drinking alcohol
and change the chemistry in your brain, smoking weed
or cigarettes which change the chemistry in your body.
Whatever it is when your life becomes too certain,
you crave for variety!
Significance (Important Basic Human Needs)
This is the need to feel needed, special, honored, unique, important.
You can achieve significance by building or creating something
others will benefit, be successful in your job, learn something
that only a few people know how to do.
Or you can negatively satisfy this need...
For example, some people achieve significance by putting
other people down, gossiping, playing the victim and relating sad
stories about themselves,
but that's the downfall path
to gain significance.
Either way, you will satisfy your need for significance...
but the question is what path are you willing to take?
The challenge with fulfilling this need is when we become
primarily dependent on approval from others to
feel complete within ourselves.
This can be a big trap and you should be aware of this blind
spot that your mind can create.
Love, Belonging & Connection
Love is the motivational force behind courage.
It’s our deepest connections that inspire us to be courageous
in the first place.
When we feel disconnected, there’s no desire to be courageous,
no reason for risk-taking, and no call to action to advance in life!
To grow as a human being, you must master the art of forming connections.
To connect means to give something your attention,
to think about it, and to engage with it.
These basic human needs include romantic relationships,
to be loved & accepted to your friends and family.
Remember this need is to feel loved and to give love to others.
We need to receive affection and to give at the same time.
That's why we join groups, clubs, communities seeking out
others that share our similar interests.
Failing to meet this basic human needs can get you in big trouble long-term.
"Self-Esteem whether high or low is the generator of
When you look into the mirror what do you see?
Is the person looking back from
the mirror your friend?
The desire to feel good about yourself is your self-esteem.
According to Maslow, esteem needs include two components.
The first involves feeling good about oneself and
The second component involves feeling valued by others.
Meaning that others will recognize our achievements and contributions.
When your esteem needs are met, you feel confident and
see your contributions and achievements as important.
I've written a post about signs of Low Self-Esteem
if you're interested in more go check it out!
Just like food is nutrition to your body, creativity is
nutrition for your brain.
We're all designed by nature to create and be creators.
Every child is an artist.
The problem is how to remain an artist when we grow up.
Everyone sooner or later wants to be creative, to create something,
to express and to reveal his(her) true self and feelings.
Creativity is best thought of as a kind of effort and work.
Creativity is the process of putting your imagination to work.
Use your observation skills and imagination.
Let your imagination fly and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
Want to be more creative?
Pick a problem you care about and get to work.
If you don't care about anything, your problem isn't creativity,
The greatest task for any human is to find meaning in their
Purpose guides your life decisions, your sense of direction,
shape your goals, and create meaning.
When you become consciously aware of your life purpose, you can feel inspired and motivated whenever you want
just by focusing your attention on your purpose.
Having purpose is when you jump out of bed, feeling excited and grateful that you're alive to continue your quest for achieving your purpose.
Why are you here?
Be alone in a quiet place in nature and by continuously asking
this question to yourself can deliver some astonishing answers for yourself!
Remember that only you create your purpose in your life,
no one else can show it to you or guide you.
People that have a strong purpose in their life live longer, decrease
the chance of having heart attacks,
have better connections and less emotional breakdowns.
Personal Growth/ Mastery
To live fully, we must grow!
Mastery is the need to become better and better at something
that matters to us.
Growth or mastery is the development of one’s
capabilities or potentials.
It is the state or process of improving oneself constantly.
We all have the urge to become the best we can be.
We want to achieve mastery in something, to develop ourselves to fulfill our potential.
You can become the person you truly desire to be by engaging
in a life-long strategy of skills, knowledge & self-improvement.
People who reach higher in business, acting, sports, selling,
engineering, writing and in every other pursuit get there by following
conscientiously and continuously a plan for self-development and growth.
So look deep inside yourself, be aware and look for strengths, talents,
and interests and dive into that with all your energy, time and desire!
Contribution and giving are the ultimate basic human needs.
This is the need to go beyond yourself and your needs to give to others.
There’s magic when you focus on helping other people in need,
when you contribute and give to others.
You instantly get variety, because naturally, a contribution is highly
uncommon in our society.
You feel significant because you know you've impacted someone's life.
The love & connection bond you'll experience when you
contribute to someone's life is priceless.
As you can see with giving & contribution you activate multiple
basic human needs and feel extraordinary at the same time.
When something great happens or you experience something
beautiful you can't help yourself and immediately want
to share that with your closest family and friends.
This is natural because we as humans beings are "programmed"
that way, to share, to be compassionate, to contribute and to give.
So give and contribute as much as you can and often!
According to Maslow, achieving self-actualization or as he calls it
later self-transcendence is rare and his examples of famous
self-actualized individuals include Albert Einstein,
Mother Teresa & Abraham Lincoln.
Maslow noted that the order of needs might be different based on individual differences or external circumstances.
According to Maslow’s definition of self-actualization:
"It may be loosely described as the full use and exploitation of talents,
Such people seem to be fulfilling themselves and to be doing
the best that they are capable of doing.
They are people who have developed or are developing to the
full stature of which they are capable."
Quotes From Tony Robbins
"Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more."
“Trade your expectation for appreciation and the world changes instantly.”
“Nothing in life has any meaning except the meaning you give to it.”
“Life is found in the dance between your deepest desire and your greatest fear.”
“Every day stand guard at the door of your mind, and you alone decide what thoughts and beliefs you let into your life. For they will shape whether you feel rich or poor, cursed or blessed.”
“It’s not what we get. But who we become, what we contribute, that gives meaning to our lives.”
“The secret to living is giving.”
“You see, in life, lots of people know what to do, but few people actually do what they know. Knowing is not enough!
You must take action.”
“Create a vision and never let the environment, other people’s beliefs, or the limits of what has been done in the past shape your decisions.”
At different phases of life and your personal journey, you naturally
value different basic human needs for different reasons.
Fully develop your human abilities, and use your power in honorable
service for the highest good of all.
In the end, creating a fulfilling, successful and happy life will likely
form a positive balance between all your basic human needs.
Embrace your unique path of growth, and use your intellect
to guide you in your life!
I'm curious...If you ranked your basic human needs
in order of importance which 5 would be at the top of your focus?
Leave a comment below with your thoughts...
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