The Hierarchy of Needs is a theory developed by Abraham Maslow in the 1950s that attempts to explain human motivation and behavior. It is one of the most influential psychological theories of all time, and it is discussed and applied in various ways in many different books and courses around the world.
What makes Hierarchy of Needs particularly interesting is that it was originally developed to explain human needs, and therefore it often has applications in the work place. For example, a business or organization may wish to understand more about their clients or customers so that they can provide the right product or service to fulfill these needs.
The theory rests on five basic needs – physiological, safety, love & intimacy, esteem & accomplishment. The first three needs – physiological, safety and love – are most immediately relevant to our purposes here. These needs are discussed at length in Chapter 6 of the book. The last two needs – esteem and accomplishment – are covered, to some extent, in Chapter 7.
The first and most basic need discussed in Hierarchy of Needs is physiological. This need is discussed in detail in Chapter 6. Essentially, it attempts to explain how humans survive – why we need to eat, drink and stay hydrated. We also need physiological needs that are less tangible, such as the need for psychological or emotional safety. For example, we need security in our personal relationships, the safety of being able to walk the streets without fear of being harmed or attacked, and so on. Without these basic needs being met, humans cannot survive, let alone thrive.
Next up in Hierarchy of Needs is safety. This need was discussed in detail in Chapter 6 of the book and it stands for the desire to feel protected and secure. Essentially, we are motivated to meet our safety needs by ensuring that others do not harm us or threaten us. To an extent, this need is related to our physiological needs, because if we are not feeling safe, then we cannot be sure that we will be able to eat or drink. However, in addition to physical safety, we also have a need for psychological safety – the need to feel as though our beliefs, thoughts and feelings are accepted and appreciated by those around us.
Love & Intimacy Needs
The third need discussed in Hierarchy of Needs is love & intimacy. This need stems from the desire to feel accepted, cherished and needed. Essentially, we have a need to feel like we are part of a loving, intimate group. This need is discussed in detail in Chapter 7 and it relates to our safety needs in two ways. First, if we do not feel valued and if we feel that our opinions do not matter, then we will not feel safe. Second, if we do not feel loved, then we will not feel confident enough to engage with others, especially in ways that might cause us to let our guard down and risk being hurt. Essentially, love and intimacy are intertwined in that without one, we cannot have the other.
The last need discussed in Hierarchy of Needs is esteem. This need stands for the desire to feel recognized and important. Essentially, we have a need to feel like we matter. This need is discussed in detail in Chapter 7 and it relates to our love and intimacy needs in that without this need, we will not feel respected or valued. For example, if we do not feel as though our opinions matter or that our feelings are valued, then we will not feel loved. In addition, if we do not feel that we are a valuable person, then we will not feel important. An important point to make here is that esteem needs can be met in various ways – through accomplishments, recognition or social status. For example, if we believe that we are not capable of doing something, then we will not feel important because we will not feel like we have worthiness. However, if we accomplish something that makes us feel important, such as if we get a promotion at work, then this will also make us feel valued and respected. Status and recognition are the simplest ways to increase one’s esteem. In addition to these three ways to meet esteem needs, a person can also decrease their esteem – through abuse, neglect or poor socialization. Of course, this can also be psychologically unhealthy and cause a person to suffer depression or anxiety. This is why it is so important that we develop and maintain healthy and satisfying relationships with those around us. This way, we can continue to feel like we matter and this, in turn, can keep our minds and bodies healthy.
Finally, we come to accomplishment needs. These needs, discussed in some detail in Chapter 7, stand for the desire to feel that we are capable and have control over our lives. Essentially, we have a need to feel as though we are doing our best and that we are making a difference. To some extent, this need is connected to our physiological needs because we require certain nutrients to keep our bodies functioning properly. However, aside from physical requirements, this need also relates to our safety needs – in particular, to our need for psychological safety. Essentially, if we believe that we do not have control over our lives or that we are not capable of doing things, then this will cause us to not feel safe and this, in turn, will make it difficult for us to function and thrive. As mentioned before, without certain physiological needs being met, we cannot function normally and this, in turn, will make us feel very insecure. For example, if we do not eat regularly, then we will not feel as though we have the nutrients to stay healthy so that we can feel safe. In addition to our physiological needs, we also have a need to feel that we are capable of handling the situations that come our way. This need relates to our safety needs in that if we do not feel as though we are capable of doing things, then we will not feel safe. In particular, this need relates to our need for autonomy – the need to feel like we are in control of our own lives. In addition, if we do not feel as though we have control over our lives, then we will not feel like we can address any issues that come our way. This, in turn, will make us feel even more anxious and potentially lead us to depression and anxiety disorders.
Now that you know what Maslow’s needs are and how they relate to one another, let’s move on to discuss how to satisfy these needs via online communication.
How Are Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Discussed in Chapter Met via by Writing Comments Online?
One of the unique things about the Internet is that it allows us to connect with people from all over the world. This is why it is so important that we learn how to use the digital landscape to our advantage. In particular, we can use blogs and forums to develop relationships and connections with people that we might not have otherwise met. In addition to this digital space, we can use social media sites to connect with people that we know in real life and to allow them to discover new things about us.
In relation to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, this means that we can use blogs and forums to satisfy our physiological needs – connecting with people that we can feed and drink with – while also using the digital space to discuss issues that are relevant to our safety and security.
It is also possible to use blogs and forums to satisfy our love and intimacy needs. This is why it is so important to make these spaces a part of our routine. In particular, connecting with people that we feel safe around – that we know will not abuse, neglect or hurt us – allows us to feel loved and accepted and to continue to develop and foster healthy and satisfying relationships.
Writing Comments Online
As a starting point, it is important to note that not all comments are created equal. In general, we want to make sure that our comments are well-written, use appropriate language and do not contain foul language or vulgarity. Also, some comments are simply useless and can even be annoying or distracting. Therefore, we should aim to write helpful comments that add value to the conversation. This way, we can continue to develop and maintain healthy and rewarding relationships.
As mentioned, one of the unique things about the Internet is that it allows us to connect with people from all over the world. This, in turn, provides us with a global audience that can potentially affect the way that our research – and our teaching, too – is undertaken. If we are writing a comment on, for example, a blog post regarding medical science, then we should make sure that our comment is written in a way that is accessible to people from all over the world.