Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is a widely known theory that is applied not only in sociology and psychology but has found ramifications of applications in marketing and sales. It is a pyramid that has at it’s base, you guessed it, basic needs. Basic needs of us human beings are these of the body: water, food, rest, warmth, safety, and security. Above the basic needs are the needs of the psyche: intimate relationships, friends, prestige and accomplishments. And at the very top of the pyramid are the needs of the soul: achieving full potential and expression of the soul.
This hierarchy proves to be a useful tool in assessing one’s well-being and where there may be lack thereof. Simply go through the layers of the pyramid and ask yourself all the questions about your body, psyche and soul. It could look something like this, but feel free to adjust the wording so that it fits your personality best.
- Is my body well fed?
- Is my body well hydrated?
- Is my body well sheltered?
- Are water, food, rest, warmth, and safety continuously available?
- Do I have intimate relationships?
- Do I have friends?
- Do I have prestige?
- Do I have accomplishments?
- Do I know my potential?
- Do I grow in my potential?
- Do I express myself freely?
Once you have an answer to all these questions, you have identified the areas that you can focus on manipulating in ways that are beneficial.
For example, if you answered ‘No’ to the question ‘Is my body well fed?’ then you can go a level deeper and assess the underlying layers. Perhaps you do eat organic foods but you are skipping breakfast and eat randomly. Or perhaps you do eat regularly but the quality of your foods can be improved. The same goes for water and hydration. Perhaps you drink plenty of liquids but they are too sugary. Or maybe you don’t drink water at all. Next comes shelter. You may think that having a roof above your head is an affirmation to the question. Shelter should include it’s quality. Sure enough shelter will keep you safe from rain and snow and predators, but is it clean and free of clutter to keep you safe from disease as well? And then comes safety and security. This is not just the presence of peace but also security that is brought about by continuity. Can you pay for your food, water, shelter, medical care? Or are any of these threatened by instability in material resources?
I hope this helps you in taking a good inventory. Once you’ve done the assessment of your current state of needs you can move on to the next step that I would call “Diagnosing” and where you can use another great tool that is called the Gordon patterns of health that covers 11 categories. Stay tuned for the detailed assessment!
With Love, in Light, for Peace,