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Hawaii_Jake's avatar

Where are you on Maslow's hierarchy of needs?

Asked by Hawaii_Jake (30339points) January 13th, 2013

Flawed though it may be, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (Wikipedia article) provides a simple picture of a human’s developmental necessities. It describes the most basic of physiological functions to the highest forms of self-expression.

Where do you fall on the hierarchy? I assume that humans with access to the Internet are not going to be simply subsisting. They are going to be flourishing in one way or another, so we’re not likely to get people here who lie in the first category.

Are you at differing levels for different areas of your life? I think it’s quite possible to be highly creative, which rises to the top, but still have difficulty forming friendships, which is on another level.

What words on the hierarchy jump out at you? Personally, I am struck by “sexual intimacy.” It’s easy to find sex for many, but finding fulfilling intimacy can be elusive.

I could place myself almost anywhere along the spectrum, but I think a good average would be the level of esteem. I look outside my own being for much acknowledgement. I often long for external reinforcement.

What about you?

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11 Answers

bookish1's avatar

I’ve got Physiological down for the most part, but striving for homeostasis is a daily challenge.
I feel that most of my challenges are in the realm of Love/Belonging. I deal with a lot of loneliness, and it is difficult indeed to find good people with whom to be intimate.
No real problems with esteem, and on my good days I am working toward self actualization. :)
Overall, I’m doing worlds better than I was just a year ago, and it’s great to remember that.

cookieman's avatar

I start to lose confidence the minute I hit level 2 (Safety). Sure I’m fine with “morality”, but I feel the rest could disappear in a blink. So no confidence in those.

Oddly, I’m really good with 3,4,and 5 (love, esteem, and self-actualization) – but I feel they are constantly undermined by the threat of level 2 crumbling at any minute.

yankeetooter's avatar

I’m still working on level 3, and some days I stress about some aspects of level 2.

muppetish's avatar

I don’t think the hierarchy works in the sense that “at this stage of my life, I am at this point in the hierarchy”. I think it’s meant more for us to measure the meaning behind our needs? At this stage, I feel secure in some higher on the priority (like love) and lower on the hierarchy (physiology—though I do feel a bit peckish..), but my safety leaves something to be desired. My job is part-time and my contract will end after I graduate. I also do not have health care, live at home with my parents, and do not have a car or the knowledge to drive it.

So I would say the needs outlined in level two are the ones that I am working toward achieving.

Unbroken's avatar

Interesting to see that people feel safety is more ephemeral and shaky then quite a few of the other aspects. I follow suit.

I identify with @bookish1 in that homeostatis is difficult to maintain dealing with disease and health energy diet, but I too am consistently at least over the long haul improving at management of it.

I also feel much like @cookieman that selfactualization is indeed a comfortable fit for me. But the emotional self esteem and other issues inform on how secure I feel at level 2. For me while I don’t necessarily have these in the bag in order to improve on a lower level I must first achieve a reason to.

Though I do have a job and a place to stay and what not they feel temporary.

Berserker's avatar

I would argue Maslow’s theory of needs, but I’d have to get in line to do that, I’m sure. That said, out of all of that the only thing that’s important to me is safety. Psychological might, at first hand, seem more important and ’‘before everything’’, however whether I live in the woods or in Utopia, if I want it, I get psychological. Adaptation and crap.

I’m too badass for the rest of that shit.

’‘threatens everyone in this thread with a bone’’

augustlan's avatar

Overall, I’m at a comfortable level all the way through self-actualization. However, I’m lacking in many individual areas on several levels: Living with chronic illness means I don’t really have homeostasis or security of my health. My current employment/income status means I don’t have security of employment, resources or property. I’m also a chronic under-achiever and not very spontaneous, so those are areas that could be improved upon.

burntbonez's avatar


wundayatta's avatar

I do a lot of creative stuff. I am involved in passing on my skills and in creating new opportunities for people to do all kinds of interesting things. I create music and dance and facilitate spiritual workshops. I’m also working on my own psychological health most of the time. In addition, I am always working on the love and belonging and sexual intimacy level. I don’t think it is possible to ever be satisfied on that level.

graynett's avatar

I’m Dropping platitudes left, right and sideways. Must be self actualizing, or as others may say

talljasperman's avatar

I’m on food and shelter….for needs.

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