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Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs – Debunking the Whole Theory

So let us begin from the start about what is the theory behind the Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. As we all know, Human behavior is complex. And, to understand the basic of it, you need to dive into the deep level of science. Well, human behavior is the combination of both science and art, so here is an essential prime factor and explanation of it.

In the layman or the economic term, human behavior is based on wants that we generate towards the same kind or towards materialistic items. For example, if someone sees a dress at a store and it is pretty then their instant thought is to buy that dress. This type of human behavior is categorized into a section of wants.  

Maslow said and proved that human behavior is a series of complex happenings in the mind of an ordinary human being due to motivation. The main factor or the module of this explanation lies in the motivational factor, which rules human behavior.

A close look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Maslow first introduced his needs theory in the year of 1943. This was published in a journal back then because people then never had smartphones or tablets. The weekly or the writing was published under the name of ‘Human Motivation and its Theory,’ and he even wrote a book about the same. This Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs suggests that there are specific needs that arise in humans, and they can be categorized in the form of a pyramid.

The topmost of the pyramid is the one that comes at a high level. And the last part is the one which humans need the most or which cannot be delayed. While some of the people criticized his working theory on the needs of the human mind, he suggested that the cycle of life happens with the hierarchy which he has produced in his book.

Maslow did tell that he was always interested to know what made people feel happy, secured, anger, and this, in turn, raises the level of needs inside their mind. With all due respect, we know that the human brain is complicated and debunking it can be hard work but if we categorize ours wants to different sections that we have then it is going to be easy work for us.

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As a humanist Maslow believed the same. He wanted to know what the self-desire that people wanted or which could also be counted as the self-actualization needs, which comes at the very top.

There are five different levels of the Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. The first starts with the self-actualization needs then it shifts down to the esteem needs. Then it goes down again to the belonging needs, then to the safety needs and later to the psychological one.

From the basic level to the complex one

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs - Debunking the Whole Theory

When you understand Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, you have to realize that there are two types of needs that a human can have.

One is the basic needs like the need for safety and shelter. Or to have food when they wake up in the morning. And the next one is the complex where a human needs to understand his self-esteem. The self-actualization means that a human has to follow his full capacity so that they can only reach the top of their life. So it is sorted.

When it comes to the wanting of needs, then humans go for the basic at first and then they choose to select onto the complex at later.  

The pyramid, which is present for Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs refers to the needs and what they relate to the mind of a human being. When a person progresses and has the safety or the necessities that they want, they move to the need of being loved. This comes in the middle where they rise, and this is where their self-esteem needs grow. This is when someone tries to question their behavior and attitude toward something. The topmost level of the pyramid consists of the actualization needs or the standard. This is where a human needs to understand his boundary and his limits to what he/she can achieve in their lifetime.

Breaking down the Pyramid

Here is how the requirements are broken down, which are present at the pyramid.

1. Psychological needs

These are the most common or the primary type of requirements that a man/woman can have. These are also known as the apparent needs which you have to get in your life to survive. Some of these needs include having the food to eat, a shelter, or a place to stay, the need to breathe and live. In the essential requirement of these needs, there are nutrition and air which are added here as well.

Maslow also included that the need for sexual reproduction comes to this point. This is because, for our population to grow and move forward, people need to mate with each other. And this is one of the most common or basic needs that they can have.

Also Read : The Butterfly Effect: This Theory Can Change Your Life

2. Safety needs

Coming to the next or the upper level of the pyramid, there lie the safety needs. This means that a human being in order to live should have a minimum safety in their lives. At this level, their need for security and safety becomes quite apparent. People who want to have control over their lives and the things that they are getting needs to have the safety needs issued here.

Some of the necessary safety needs are financial safety, health, and wellness safety and the security needs that they want from injuries and accidents. People need to obtain an excellent job so that they can be financially dependent and stand on their own feet. And they should have a basic safety on how they are living which matters to their well-being as well.

3. Social needs

The third one is called social needs. This means that in order for the average or an ordinary human being to live in society, they need to have a basic social need. These are the things that can satisfy the human mind. This need in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs helps a human to understand the meaning of being loved, respected, and accepted socially into a group.

Here are some of the breakdown of the needs. The need of being loved, the lack of having romantic attachments, having a healthy family, a group of friends, being accepted to community groups are everything that lies here in this need. To fight mental disorder such as depression or loneliness, social needs are the part which helps a human being. This is to feel being loved by their opposite sex or by their family members.

4. Self-esteem needs

At the fourth level, which comes for the Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, it is the self-esteem needs that are talked here. So what are they? Well, self-esteem is something which is a part of your day to day life. It is the need for being appreciated and have respect for the work that you do. When the requirements which are left at the bottom of the levels are satisfied. This is one need that appears inside your mind.

We, as an ordinary human being, need to be recognized by the others. We have a compelling need where our self-esteem and ego comes, and we identify them. Even though they are not the basic needs, they go and lies in the complicated part here. At this point, after you have complied with the basic needs. And, it becomes increasingly crucial for you to gain respect for the work that you do for others and even for yourself. This is an appreciation or needs that you want from others.

5. Self-actualization needs

The top of the pyramid lies for the self-actualization needs or the need to actualize your wants. At the peak, it lies, and it explains the conditioning of the human brain to attain the kind of desire that they have towards a sure thing.

For example, self-actualization needs mean that you realize what you are capable of. Maslow explained that this need means ‘it is loosely based and describes the full use of the human mind in regards to the talents, potentialities that it might have, etc.

Also Read : 5 Psychology Traps that Investors Need to Avoid

Summary

For the summarization of the entire Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, here is the essential thing.

  1. The human mind is the complex structure of our life. 
  2. There are two kind of needs which can happen inside our mind called the basic and the complex requirements.
  3. There are five needs that can occur inside us. 
  4. The first is the psychological need or the basic level of need used by people. 
  5. The second lies in safety needs like safety for financial issues and other guarantees. 
  6. The third is the psychological need which uses a human to function on the basis of emotions. 
  7. Esteem needs stand at fourth and that’s where the respect is marked.
  8. The fifth one is called the actualization need or when a person understands his/her entire potential.

The Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is a diagrammatic module of how our needs are categorized and based. The higher you move, the complex your need becomes. And mostly Maslow has said that the requirements are based on the income level of the people too. People who have reduced income are more opinionated towards the primary type of the lower level of the pyramid.

And those for the higher section of the society have an opinion for the higher base for the pyramid. There are potent motivators from all around which works for the people to enhance their needs as well.

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