Abraham Maslow - (April 1, 1908 – June 8, 1970) was a psychologist. He is
mostly noted today for his proposal of a hierarchy of human needs.
Hierarchy of needs - based on two groupings: deficiency needs and growth
needs. Within the deficiency needs, each lower need must be met before moving
to the next higher level. Once each of these needs has been satisfied, if at some
future time a deficiency is detected, the individual will act to remove the
deficiency. The first four levels are:
1) Physiological: hunger, thirst, bodily comforts, etc.;
2) Safety/security: out of danger;
3) Belongingness and Love: affiliate with others, be accepted; and
4) Esteem: to achieve, be competent, gain approval and recognition.
According to Maslow, an individual is ready to act upon the growth needs if and
only if the deficiency needs are met. Maslow's initial conceptualization included
only one growth need--self-actualization. Self-actualized people are
characterized by: A) being problem-focused; B) incorporating an ongoing
freshness of appreciation of life; C) a concern about personal growth; and D) the
ability to have peak experiences. Maslow later differentiated the growth need of
self-actualization, specifically naming two lower-level growth needs prior to
general level of self-actualization and one beyond that level. They are:
5) Cognitive: to know, to understand, and explore;
6) Aesthetic: symmetry, order, and beauty;
7) Self-actualization: to find self-fulfillment and realize one's potential; and
8) Self-transcendence: to connect to something beyond the ego or to help others
find self-fulfillment and realize their potential.