Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Personal Development for A Quality Life
Abraham Maslow was born in Brooklyn, New York and was a professor between 1951 and 1969 at Brandeis University. He was the only Jewish boy growing up in a non-Jewish neighborhood. He taught psychology and in addition to being the creator of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, he was also the founder of humanistic psychology. Leading up to his time at Brandeis University, he was a part of the faculty at Brooklyn College and was also named Humanist of the Year by the American Humanist Association in 1967. After his time at Brandeis University, he moved to the Laughlin Institute in California to be a resident fellow. He passed away from a heart attack in 1970 on June 8.
Maslow made it a practice to study only exemplary people rather than neurotic or mentally ill people. Some examples of the exemplary people he studied include Jane Addams, Frederick Douglas, Albert Einstein and Eleanor Roosevelt. He also studied only the healthiest portion of students in the college population. His reasoning for studying only exemplary people is because he believed that if he were to study unhealthy, immature, stunted and crippled specimens, it would only yield a philosophy and psychology of neurosis and immaturity.
Maslow’s hierarchy is usually portrayed as a pyramid; the bottom, largest layer consisting of the most fundamental needs. The top, smallest layer consists of self-actualization. In detail, the five stages include:
- Physiological Needs. This layer, or stage, are the needs for survival. These needs are defined as something the body needs to function and include water, air and food as the metabolic needs. Other physiological needs include shelter, clothing and sexual competition.
- Safety Needs. The second stage is only considered after the first layer is relatively satisfied. Some examples of safety needs include health, financial security, personal security and safety against illness and accidents as well as adverse impacts.
- Love. The third layer of this pyramid is considered once the first two needs are fulfilled. This aspect involves relationships that are generally emotionally based such as family, intimacy and friendship. Humans have to feel acceptance and belonging; without this, it can lead to social anxiety, loneliness and clinical depression.
- Esteem. Esteem is also known as the belonging need and represents the individual’s need to have self-respect and self-esteem. It represents the desire to be accepted as well as valued by others. If this level is imbalanced, it results in the inferiority complex.
- Self Actualization. The top and final stage of the pyramid is self-actualization. This level represents a human’s full potential. Maslow describes this level as the desire to become everything that you are capable of becoming, or the best that you can be. The exemplary people he studied are among those who achieve this level.
Wahba and Bridgewell were two people who did some extensive reviewing and found little scientific evidence for the ranking system that Maslow described in his hierarchy. Manfred Max-Neef is a Chilean philosopher and economist who argued that the human fundamental needs are not hierarchical and are part of being a human. Although this is the case, he does argue that poverty may result from the frustration or denial of any one of these needs as well as the need not being fulfilled. The hierarchy of needs has also been criticized due to the fact that Maslow places sex on the bottom layer of the pyramid as one of the most basic needs. Another critique is that you can have all these needs competing simultaneously.
Nonetheless, Maslow’s model is widely practiced in business settings. One example of how it is practiced is in marketing courses. These courses teach the hierarchy of needs as a basis to understand the primary motive for a consumer’s actions. Motivation is a key component of advertising and marketing in general.
- Abraham Maslow: Biography on Abraham Maslow and explanation of the hierarchy of needs.
- Hierarchy of Needs Pyramid: Labeled image to the hierarchy of needs.
- Maslow’s Hierarchy: Brief outline of the model.
- A Lecture on the Topic: Outline of lesson lecture on the hierarchy of needs.
- Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Detailed description of all five stages.
- Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Psychological Health: Journal of General Psychology article from Richard Stockton State College.
- Abnormal Behavior: Lesson and explanation of the hierarchy of needs within abnormal psychology.
- Psychosynthesis: Maslow’s hierarcy of needs and subpersonality work.
- Seneca Valley Child Development: Explanation of the pyramid and its relation to child development.
- Using Maslow’s Hierarchy in Educational Programming: Information on using the hierarchy of needs in educational programming.
- Motivational Model: Detailed information on using the hierarchy of needs as a motivational model.
- A Look at Exceptional People: Description of the hierarchy of needs.
- Lesson Plan with Quiz: List of links to different areas within the lesson plan.
- A More Advanced Lesson Plan: Lesson plan for the hierarchy of needs.
- Needs and Goals of Human Life: Detailed article that relates the hierarchy of needs to the needs and goals of human life.
- Spiritual Health: Information on money, marriage and the hierarchy of needs.
- Additonal Needs: An Updated Model: Information on the five stages of need levels including the addition of two more levels.
- Abraham Maslow Hierarchy of Need Theory: The history of human psychology and the role of the hierarchy of needs.
- The Need to Belong: Document that connects child development with the need to belong from the hierarchy of needs.
- Illustrates Examples of Five Stages: Includes examples of a fulfilled and deficient need.
- Counseling and Maslow’s Theory: Information on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs as it relates to counseling.
- Daily Motivation: Example of how motivation is accomplished through the use of the hierarchy of needs pyramid.
- A Detailed Look at Self-Actualizers: Detailed notes on Abraham Maslow and the hierarchy of needs.
- Hierarchy of Needs: Brief outline of the hierarchy of needs.
- Management and Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Information on how the hierarchy of needs is used with management practices.
- Levels of Service: Document that accesses the hierarchy of needs with levels of service.
- Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and ICT: Information on the hierarchy of needs and digital life.
- Cross-cultural Commonalities and Interconnectedness: One theory that explains the cross-cultural commonalities and interconnectedness of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.
- Adult Learners: Document that explains how the hierarchy of needs is used for adult learners.
- Critique of Theory: Two main critiques are scientific and cultural in outlook.
- Max-Neef on Human Needs: An economist’s look at fundamental human needs.
- Gender Criticism: A look at Maslow and his theories of women