Author Topic: Understanding Basic Human Needs (by LadyKalee)  (Read 22517 times)

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August 24, 2004, 09:44:08 PM
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Originally written by LadyKalee.



“All judgments are tragic expressions of unmet needs”. Such a profound statement and yet so true. We as human beings all have basic fundamental needs in which must be fulfilled to some degree for us to be able to function reasonably well in society, and for our well being and continued growth. These needs are physical as well as psychological. Unfortunately through our parents and society, most of us have learned to try and get our needs met through Judgments, Criticisms, Diagnosis, Interpretations and telling others all the things they are doing wrong. Which in many cases aren’t very productive because it really does not address what the actual needs are. You certainly know what it is that you don’t want, but what is it that you really need. There are many different ways for needs to be met. Needs can either be met CONSTRUCTIVELY or DESTRUCTIVELY.


When needs are met constructively, it means that when something happens to fulfill a persons needs, usually other needs are fulfilled as well. Or at least, other needs are not frustrated. The constructive fulfillment of basic needs lead to continued growth of a person and the inclination to care about and help other people.

Whenever a need is not fulfilled, it leads to a feeling of frustration of the person and the needs. The destructive fulfillment of needs means that the actions to satisfy a person’s need, leads to the frustration of other needs. Or actions to fulfill a person’s needs, harm other people and frustrate the satisfaction of other people’s basic needs. When needs are persistently frustrated, people are likely to turn to destructive need fulfillment. This happens because frustrated needs make people desperate to do whatever they can to get there needs met. They lose the ability to weigh consequences and make good judgments. People will abandon their ethics, morals and values to meet their needs. It is that important.


Traumatic experiences usually frustrate human needs. Most traumatic experiences frustrate the need for security. They lead people to believe the world is a dangerous and that people are dangerous. Traumatic experiences make people feel vulnerable and that they can’t protect themselves.

Traumatic experiences frustrate the need for positive identity. People feel diminished, worthless. People feel that something must be wrong with them, otherwise such a terrible thing would not have happened to them.

Traumatic experiences frustrate the need for effectiveness and control. When people are unable to protect themselves or their family, they feel less effective and less in control. They may also become aggressive and feel unable to control their behavior toward others.

Traumatic experiences frustrate the need for positive connection to other people. It leads to mistrust and disconnection from other people. It can lead people to see others as separate and hostile to one self.

Traumatic experiences frustrate the need for comprehension of reality. It destroys a persons understanding of the world and their place in the world. The world seems not normal, not a reasonable, moral, or predictable place. A person can become obsessed with asking, “WHY”

Traumatic experiences often lead to destructive satisfaction of one’s needs. Why do people fight and argue. They fight and argue when they don’t get what they want. And what you want is determined by what you think you need. People may choose aggression to make themselves feel secure, even when there is no real danger. Power and aggression are used to gain a feeling of effectiveness and control. Control is so important in some traumatized people they feel they have to be alert at all times and exercise control even when it is not needed.

Part of healing from the trauma involves finding constructive ways to satisfy our basic human needs. The key is being able to identify what the needs actually are. Also once you have identified what your needs are, looking at the destructive ways you are getting them met, And then finding constructive ways to meet them. Now we will take a look at many of the basic human needs.



The human body is a complex creation that science and medicine still doesn’t fully understand. There are four relationships in life.

Physical Needs – Purpose and Joy
Social Needs – Love and Recognition
Mental Needs – Hope
Spiritual Needs – Peace and Faith

The first is our physical relationship with our environment and basic needs of the human body. The second is the social relationship with other human beings and the needs of the heart. The third is our relationship with ourselves and the needs of the mind. And the fourth is our relationship with God and the unseen spirit world, the needs of the soul. Each of these relationships is very important to our health and happiness. Which means that all needs of these four relationships must be satisfied. Looking at the person as a whole and no part can go unattended if true health and happiness are to be achieved.


Our body is the house we live in while on earth. It will grow and it will die.
Then we will move out of our physical body to a different kind of existence. It’s a temporary house where we live for only a short period of time. Thus the reason our earthly bodies are the least important part of our make up. Physical survival needs such as food, water, air, clothing, sex, health, income and shelter are well understood and much of our time is devoted to these survival needs. But there is another physical need just as urgent and important but less recognized. It is the need for Self Fulfillment, which can be defined with the words Purpose and Joy. It is most important for every person to find the true purpose for their life and experience the joy when they fulfill that purpose. This basic human need satisfies our physical existence. This answers the questions “Why am I here and what is my purpose in life”. A person needs a reason to get out of bed in the morning, a purpose in life, something meaningful and constructive. When that purpose is not defined we become frustrated, depressed or despondent. The symptoms in which are revealed in our behavior. Although home, family and career are important priorities. They cannot satisfy the full purpose of our existence. Once our life’s purpose is recognized and fulfilled, and then all the other priorities will fall into place. Until then, life is unsettled, dissatisfying and incomplete. Fulfilling the true purpose for which we were born is the single, most urgent propriety to our personal happiness.


The “Heart” most people are familiar with is the organ that pumps blood through our bodies. The heart is also the center of our emotions and feelings towards others. It is from our hearts in which we relate to other human beings. And this is what identifies the “Social” part of our make up. Just like the physical part of our make up which has certain needs that must be fulfilled, the social needs are crying out to be satisfied as well. The needs of the heart can be summarized in two words Love and Recognition. The number one fear of all people is rejection. And the number one need of all people is Acceptance. Simply stated, every person needs to feel loved, recognized and accepted as a worthwhile human being for this need to be fulfilled.


The human mind is a very private place, the most private in our human experience. It is the place where no other person can go and is a very powerful part of our human makeup. The mind is where we carry our relationships with ourselves. Just as the body and heart have certain needs that must be satisfied, the mind also has needs that are critical to a healthy thought process. Those needs can be summarized as one word Hope. When a person has hope, life is good. And when hope is taken away, life can be very difficult. The mind is capable of good and evil thoughts that can be constructive or destructive to our entire future. It is like a battlefield where fight most of life’s battles. A person with hope will show it through energetic, positive, successful pursuits, but without hope our ambitions become dead in the water. Hope depends on the belief that everything is going to be OK. It must look beyond the current circumstance with expectation and confidence, Even when the current circumstance is threatening and challenging… Hope doesn’t require proof, it requires trust. And Hope can only be as strong as the amount of trust we have.


The soul is the most valuable part of our human existence. It is the spiritual part of us that will live forever, long after our physical bodies have returned to earth. Like the other parts of our makeup, which have certain needs that need to be satisfied, the soul has those needs as well. These needs can be summarized in two words Peace and Faith. Both of which are essential for spiritual health and happiness. Human beings were created to believe in the existence of a Higher Power, and to trust in the Higher Power explicitly. This pure and simple belief, trusting in the Higher Power creates an inner peace as nothing else can.


Another version of our basic human needs was created by Psychologist Abraham Maslow. He grouped various motivating needs into five categories.


There are certain physical needs that apply to our biological bodies. Such as Income, health, shelter, food, air, water, sex and sleep. We spend much of our lives fulfilling these needs as for our bodies are the vessels which house our souls. Without these needs being met, we would not survive physically. Physical safety is an essential need.


Safety and security is the most basic of psychological needs. It is the belief that we are safe from physical as well as psychological harm. We need to feel that we can protect ourselves as well as our love ones from danger, attack, etc. Continued employment and a healthy environment is another part of security.


We need to have a positive connection and esteem for others. We need to feel acceptance, love and a sense of belonging. This means having close relationships with individuals and groups, intimate friendships, family ties, and relationships to the community. Recreation and entertainment are part of our social needs as well. We need to have comprehension of reality. We need to understand people and the world (what they are, how they operate, why people do what they do, why things happen the way they do). It is the basis for understanding our place in the scheme of things. Our comprehension of reality helps us create meaning in our lives. It can help us fit into the world and can help us to have a vision of how we want to live life, our values and morals.


Another basic human need is for a positive identity and self-esteem. This need requires us to develop and maintain a positive image of ourselves. A positive identity requires self-awareness and acceptance of ourselves, including our limitations. Our independence or autonomy and self-trust are also a major part of this. Having the ability to make one’s own decisions and choices as well as being not only connected, but separate. It means trusting ones own judgment and perceptions and having the desire to achieve.


This need includes personal growth, higher education, the drive to realize and utilize one’s potential capabilities, the desire to contribute to the betterment of mankind. This also includes our spirituality including transcendence of the self. This becomes increasingly more important as we get older. We as human beings have the need to grow and expand out horizons.



Motivational speaker Anthony Robbins has another version of our basic needs. He has them divided into six different categories. Everything we experience in life is driven by our emotional needs. There are four different classes of experiences in which we experience on a regular basis.

Something that feels good, and it is good for you and others, and   serves the greater good. These are the peak experiences in life. This  is also the experience when all our needs are being met at once.

Something that does not feel good, but is good for you and others, and serves the greater good. These experiences are the secret to a joyous and fulfilling life.
Something that feels good, but is not good for you and others, and does not stand for the greater good. These are the experiences that we do everyday in our lives that prevents us from moving forward.

Something that does not feel good, and is not good for you and others, and does not stand for the greater good. These are the experiences that come from fear and old habits.

No matter where you live in the world our basic human needs are the same. Some may have different priorities depending on where you live. Getting your needs met can be very difficult at times. The key once again is being able to identify what your needs are. As Mr. Robbins points out is that our needs are constantly in conflict. They create a Paradox. A Paradox is when two things appear to be in conflict but are actually complimentary. And this can be very confusing at times. But understanding how these needs are in constant conflict can help you understand why you do the things that you do. The first need is.


We need to feel certain that we can feel comfortable. The most fundamental need is that we can avoid pain and gain pleasure. This our basic survival need. For most people certainty equals survival, it’s that important to our lives. If you want to have certainty, you need to make sure that you have quality information and that you apply your faith. When you are feeling really uncertain in your life, you reach for something that you can predict that will be certain. There are many different ways in which to meet these needs, negative ways and positive ways. Negative ways are very seductive. They are the experiences that feel good, but are not good for you. These are the class three experiences. What do most people do when they need certainty, they reach for food, anything that will give them certainty that they are familiar. Things that they feel will give them control. They can control other people. Avoid a large challenge by doing something small that they can control, like choosing to clean your car instead of paying all the overwhelming bills. Some people try to achieve it creating consistency. Creating a set routine. Those don’t seem to be very productive as to the world and everyday life is changing to rapidly. Some people create a negative identity for themselves. Some positive ways are to create a positive identity for yourself and having complete faith in the circumstances. Most people try to meet these needs by creating an artificial vehicle such as money and relationships. They think if they have enough money or the perfect relationship then they will be happy. So what happens when you become totally certain, well you are confident for one, you lose your edge, you don’t grow as a person. When you totally satiate a need you become unhappy. So when you become totally certain you become BORED! And this brings us to the second basic human need.


The second need is in direct conflict with the first one. This is the paradox. Every human being has the need for uncertainty. You don’t just want it, you don’t just desire it, you might try and avoid it, but you absolutely need it. Other ways to describe this need is diversity, challenge, surprise, unpredictable and difference. And from this need is where all the excitement in life comes from. Lets look at relationships for example. At first in the relationship you are uncertain as to what it will bring. And your certain about the uncertainty. Meeting both of the needs. After awhile you can totally predict what the other person will say of do. Then total certainty is achieved. So what happens when you are totally certain, you become bored. Then you start looking for ways to create uncertainty. Some negative ways in which these needs can be met are that you can start working more, decide that you are with the wrong person because your bored, you can start cheating, you can start arguments. All of these ways can create variety and uncertainty. Other negative ways are to indulge in drugs or alcohol. All of these negative ways as well as others are very seductive. Because they feel good when your doing them, but it creates more pain for you and others. The class three experiences. Some positive ways to meet these needs in relationships could be that you travel, start new and interesting conversations, create variety in your sex life. So no matter who you are, or what you do, or who you are with, there is always variety in a positive way, if you are willing to look for it. So when your totally certain, you are bored, and when your totally uncertain your freaked out. Hopefully now you can start to see how these needs are in constant conflict. The paradox, two things that appear to be in conflict but are actually complimentary. A delicate balance must be achieved to have these needs met together. Which brings us to the third human need.


        Other ways to describe this is to be needed, to feel importance, to have purpose, unique and different. This is the emotional need that drives all human beings. Keep this in mind, whatever human beings do they have a reason. And whatever they do they believe that either consciously or subconsciously, it’s going to meet one of their needs. Even if it hurts other needs, it’s going to meet one of their needs. If we can learn to recognize what drives us, then we can find positive ways to get the most out of our needs, and not just getting that temporary relief as from the class 3 experiences. The most important way that women feel significant is they need to be needed, and for men the most important way is to feel important. They both have these needs. The importance just varies from men and women. Some negative ways to meet the need for significance is to tear everyone else down, violence is a way to gain instant significance, create a negative identity, illness. Some positive ways are learning, knowing the answers, a different and unique style, eccentric, family, children and money. Remember, if something works in your life to fulfill a need, whether it is a positive or negative way, especially on the subconscious level, you will do it over and over again. So what happens when you feel totally significant, well in order to feel totally significant you have to be different. And this violates the fourth basic human need, which is


This is what we all really want and need. It is what the human soul yearns for. So when you are totally significant, different and unique. This separates us from other people as well as the connection with people. Once again you see the constant conflict that these two needs have. We want so badly to feel significant, unique, and when we get that we wonder why we don’t feel fulfilled. It’s because we don’t feel that same level of love and connection. Some negative ways to feel connection are sympathy, getting sick or injured, violence, crime, and joining a gang. Some positive ways to feel connections are join a club, organizations, family, friends, relationships, sexuality, spirituality, pets, nature, self sacrifice, teams and appreciating beauty and art. So lets look and the relationship example again. You meet this special person, everything is great, you are really excited, this person notices you, they really love you, and you feel really significant. Then the relationship progresses, and we tend to start feeling less significant. This person still loves us, but they just don’t give us the same level of attention as before, and not enough for us to be fulfilled. So we start to look for ways to make us feel significant again. Keep this in mind, when you demand significance, you rarely get it. So you have this relationship and it’s so wonderful, you feel so connected, you have this total connection, it feels like we’re one soul, and then all the sudden someone says “But who am I”. If I am you, and you are I, then who am I. I don’t have my own identity. So then you go out and try to create your own identity and then sure enough, the next thing you know, you are alone again. But now I don’t feel that connection. You see the paradox. This is why we see the same problems over and over again. They just have different strategies to meet these needs, but the same problems. People just don’t understand how these needs are constantly in conflict. People try and meet their needs, and usually meet them very weakly. On a ten scale they are a two, three, or four. They are not satisfied enough to be really happy, and yet they’re not dissatisfied enough to change. Isn’t that a scary place to be. You can meet these first four needs and still not be totally fulfilled, cause you also have to meet the next two needs as well. The first four needs are our basic fundamental needs. The last two are our  essential and primary needs that must be met for us to be totally fulfilled as a person, and the way you approach the first four needs determines how fulfilled you will be with the last two. The next need is


It is essential for us to grow as humans. Everything in life is either growing or dying. There is nothing in between. We all must serve a purpose. We can’t be happy or fulfilled unless we are constantly growing. Next is


We all have the need to go beyond ourselves. We all know how good it feels to do something that we don’t have to do, and we do it anyway, not expecting anything in return. It’s a feeling like no other. We as humans all have the need to contribute to the greater well being of people and our society. Everything must serve a higher purpose or the greater good of it will not last, including you.

So what have we learned so far.

People will violate their beliefs, values, and morals to meet their needs
When you find something that is fulfilling, you are driven to do it, and you will do it over and over again whether it is positive or negative.
You’ve got to be aware of what the needs are and what is driving them, especially the negative ways so that you can find productive ways to meet them
When some one is at peak performance they believe that all six needs are being met at once.
These six needs must be met with all people and interactions in order for us to feel fulfilled.
Negative ways of fulfilling needs can be very seductive as they feel good at the time, but does not serve our greater good.
The secret to a happy and fulfilling life is to avoid class three and four experiences and to convert class two experiences into class one
You can meet these first four needs in destructive ways and feel a little fulfilled, just enough that you are really not happy, but not dissatisfied enough to change, and you will not be fulfilled and happy, cause you will not grow and contribute.



Each of us has the same human needs, but the priority and importance of the needs varies from person to person. When a people do not get their needs met, they can become frustrated, and turn to negative strategies to meet their needs. We shall now take a look at different needs and how they manifest in peoples lives both positive and negative ways.


Security is the need to feel safe, to feel assured that they know what is going to happen, to know ahead of time what the plans are. What constitutes security is different for different people. Examples of how security manifests in peoples lives are

Having lots of money in the bank
Having a planned savings/retirement program
Having a secured job
Having a house, home and family
Having a dependable car
Paying off a mortgage/no debts
Having personal and family health
Having life and health insurance to protect their family
Having personal faith in god
Carrying a gun
Living in a gated community
Living near family and friends

Positive aspects: When meeting the need for security in a positive way it tends to make you feel safe, balanced, grounded, connected, safe, secure, and trusting that things will be ok in life.

Negative aspects: Meeting the need in a negative way tends to make you overly cautious, fearful, paralyzed, indecisive, frozen in place, unable to function due to insecurity, retaliation against someone who they believe destroys their sense of Security.

People who have the need for security will be more deeply affected by sudden changes, unforeseen events, real or perceived threats to their jobs, their livelihood, of their sense of self. Their fear will keep them from functioning in times of crisis or potentially cause them to react strongly to someone that  they feel is threatening their sense of security. People with the need for security are more likely to work for some one else than entrepreneurial endeavors. People who have a low security need will tend to welcome changes and new situations.


Adventure is the need for an adrenaline rush, to have new experiences, to travel, to have BIG experiences, to have drama in their life, to have a sense of anticipation about upcoming events. Some examples are

Planning new trips (even if they are not taken)
Extreme sports
Starting a new company
Moving frequently
Changing jobs frequently
Changing partners or spouse
Buying a new car every year
Being an entrepreneur
Conquering something
Experimenting with new techniques and materials
Being the first to do something or try something
Loving the challenge of solving problems
Race car driver

Positive aspects: Meeting the need in a positive way gives you a Sense of higher self-confidence, independence, risk-taking, optimism, excitement, enthusiasm for living.

Negative aspects: Meeting the need in negative way can give you a reckless regard for life and limb, irresponsibility, cutting themselves off from people (hermit), judgmental of others who are less adventurous, creating crisis or drama inappropriately.

People with the need for adventure will lead the pack to find new things to do, new places to visit, new markets to open, new ways of doing things. They make excellent sales people. If things get to boring, they will find a way a liven them up, either in a positive way by initiation a new way or in a negative way by going off on their own, taking great risks or by criticizing others who can’t see that the new adventure is wonderful.

There is a conflict between people who have the need for security and adventure that creates a lot of havoc. Some people have both security and adventure as their main needs. This creates a challenging situation in which it seems to be contradictory. To handle it appropriately, one might enjoy traveling to new places, (adventure) yet will carefully plan out the trip, (security), satisfying both needs in a positive way. Of they might find themselves constantly in conflict between the two. If they realize they are responsible for meeting their own needs, the conflict can be managed in a positive way.


Freedom is the need for independence and spontaneity. It is also the need to have choices and to feel in control of making those choices. Many people might have the need for freedom that goes along with adventure. People with the need for freedom will tend to partake in more adventurous venues. Freedom does not care for plans of heavy structure. Some examples are

Having choices and making their own choices
Feeling free to move around without restrictions
Feeling free to make choices on their job
Making choices about relationships
Choosing where they live
Refusing to obey rules that were created by others
Advocating freedom as a basic human right
Keeping their options open, not making decisions
Re-arranging their home or office
Unique way of dressing, hair style, appearance
Feeling free to be themselves not matter what the situation
Searching for their own answers, rather than others opinions
Refusing to make a commitment
Emotionally unavailable

Positive aspects: Meeting the need in a positive way will tend to give you the feeling of independence, self confidence, high self esteem, teaching others, clarity

Negative aspects: Meeting the needs in a negative way can lead to relationship avoidance, fear of commitment, separation and distancing from others, inability to understand others and be understood, manipulative (imposing on people’s freedom), martyrdom (feeling stuck, trapped, or sorry for your self)

People with the need for freedom may resist any and all attempts to impose new rules on them. They need to be in an environment where independent thinking and spontaneity can be rewarded. They make good teachers of people who are expected to exercise independent judgment. If your around people with the need for freedom you will get along best with them if you recognize and respect their need to make choices for themselves. If you have the need for freedom must recognize that need in yourself, and not put yourself in situations that are very rule oriented, rather you must look for situations where your freedom can be exercised appropriately.


Exchange is the need to trade information and knowledge with others, not just to mingle of socialize, but to deliver and receive something of value. That something of value may be information, conversation, energy, friendship, services, money, gifts, love justice, shared experiences, People with the need for exchange are concerned about the flow of energy in all types of relationships. They like to see things moving in some way that expresses balanced equality, integrity, and equal exchange. Some examples are.

Participating with others in all types of discussions
Staying in touch with friends, family (phone calls, letters, e-mails, in-person visits, gifts, etc)
Feeling like a team with co-workers
Working with others who have a common goal
Participating in clubs, teams, committees
Seeing justice done
Feeling a sense of integrity and trust with others
Sharing and receiving information
Studying situations relating to ethics, integrity and justice
Sharing a deep relationship with another person where they feel able to communicate and interact freely and easily
Building and maintaining an active network of contacts

Positive aspects: Meeting the need for exchange in a positive way can be a good role model for relationships, maintaining an equal balance in a relationship. Keeping things moving (knowledge, information, communication, energy). Promoting equality in interactions, contracts, ethics, integrity, balance

Negative aspects: Negative meeting of the needs can lead to keeping secrets, lying, withholding communications, gossip, criticism, cynicism, general negativity, stinginess, not participation with others in an equal or balanced way, unethical behavior

People with the need for exchange get along well with others who have a common goal. If they can’t find a common interest they tend to write off that person and it’s challenging for them to continue any further interaction with that person. People with the need for exchange need to feel they are giving and receiving something of value for other people. They will be very frustrated with unethical behavior or learning that something has been withheld from them.


People with need for power need to be in a position of authority and responsibility. They need to explore power, leadership and accomplishment. They tend to be good organizers and accept responsibility, setting an example of leadership. Some examples are

Managing a company
Becoming a leader of an organization or professional group
Organizing events trips projects
Achieving success
Helping others feel empowered
Being a well know speaker
Writing a book on leadership
Being responsible for things, projects, events, situations
Being recognized as a leader
Teaching others about leadership and responsibility
Taking command of a military unit
Taking charge in an emergency or crisis

Positive aspects: Meeting the need for power in a positive way and leave you with self-empowerment, positive leader role model, sense of accomplishment, success, feeling of being organized and responsible

Negative aspects: Meeting the need in a negative way will tend to show abuse of power, dictatorship, inappropriate control, anger, manipulation, violence against other people
People with the need for power will gravitate to situations that allow them to exercise their leadership skills and responsibility. This may be on a grand scale or on a smaller level. When they cannot exercise their need for power, they may become manipulative through coercive power, threats or over-control. A person with the need of power may exercise it in the work place, find outlets in a community setting, or in a teaching others about the use of appropriate power. These people may be noticed when they walk into a room because they carry a strong sense of leadership. These are good folks to put in charge when something needs to get done. They are happiest when they feel powerful. They are unhappiest when something prevents them from exercising power in some way of they feel a sense of personal failure.


Expansion is the need to build something, to add onto, to create an empire, to expand horizons, to go where no man has gone before, to grow as a person. Some examples are

Building a company
Building a personal and political empire
Personal fortune
Expanding a collection (art, rare books, etc)
Building new buildings, roads, cities, communities
Discovering new ways of doing things
Expanding boundaries of science, art, medicine, music or nature
Learning new physical and spiritual things
Seeing the bigger picture
Exploring uninhibited lands or regions
Becoming a minister and preaching about spiritual connection
Creating new breeds of animals of plants
Discovering ones self

Positive aspects: Getting this need met in a positive way brings on growth and expansion within yourself and you mind, recognizing the value of others, recognizing the value of art, science, nature, physical and spiritual laws, recognizing a connection with great spiritual leaders (Christ, Buddha, the higher self), working with the study of intuition and psychic interests, understanding how the universe works and how they fit into it, understanding themselves and others.

Negative aspects: Meeting this need in a negative way can bring about indiscriminate growth (cancer, huge weight gains, hoarding things, large collection of odd things), confusion, loss abandonment, betrayal, loss, suicide, atheism, evil, sin, spiritual separation
People with the need for expansion will constantly be trying to expand their knowledge and the boundaries of that knowledge. This is good if they can focus they’re energy on assisting the growth of a company, or as in their own personal expansion and growth. If they’re need for expansion is thwarted, they may have the tendency to take from others to fulfill that need and turn to inappropriate and harmful ways as well.


Acceptance is the need to accept yourself and be accepted by others. This includes a feeling of belonging. People with need for acceptance are usually very easy going and pleasant to have in a group. Some examples are

Being accepted by neighbors
Being accepted in a club of group
Feeling a sense of acceptance by co-workers
Working with people who need extra attention
Feeling loved
Doing things that make others feel good
Being nice regardless of the person of situation
Being tolerant of self and others
Accepting whatever comes up in life
Being accepted as a valuable member of a family group

Positive aspects: Meeting this need in a positive way can bring about understanding and participating in love and loving situations, romance, bondedness, sense of family or tribe, self-esteem, self-forgiveness, forgiveness of others, humanitarian ways.

Negative aspects: Meeting this need in a negative way can leave you feeling rejected, jealous, prejudice, guilty, shameful, hate, group prejudice and fear of different classes of people.

People who have the need for acceptance are a valuable addition to any group. They will often be a stabilizing presence and help others tolerate each other a little better. They may go along with whatever proposals are made to avoid conflict in a group. It’s very hard for them to express any different opinion because of their fear of being rejected. They need to feel accepted as well as accepting others. They can be seen as a doormat with no opinion of their own or their time may be abused since they will rarely criticize others or say no. When rejected by others it causes them more severe pain because of their high need for acceptance.

People with a need for community like having people around. They are highly social and will express their enjoyment of gatherings. These are the best folks to put in charge of parties or company gatherings. They will seek out people and have large number of relationships. The need for community is different from the need for exchange in that community does not require exchange of any kind. Some examples are

Throwing parties for the slightest reasons
Being the center of the office network
Participating in classes, groups, clubs
Going to a mall or a concert just to be around people
Being the cook for a large family gathering
Hosting family gatherings, groups or friends
Opening their home to people from out of town
Running for public office
Gathering signatures for a petition
Creating a learning center
Being a part of a campaign

Positive aspects: Meeting this need in a positive way makes you highly social, the ability to have and relate to children, grandchildren, distant relatives, the need for family, bonding at a higher level, responsible citizen, sense of ones own importance and dignity in relation to the rest of humanity

Negative aspects: Meeting this need in a negative way brings about neediness, clinging, dependence, irresponsibility, criminal behavior, short term thinking.

People with the need for community will be with people every chance they can get. They may be the center of a gathering or on the sidelines. These are people that do not respond well when they are isolated or working the midnight shift. Because socializing is such an innate talent with them, others may feel jealous and not understand the high need to be with other people. Not every one has an inherent need (or even tolerance) for very high social contact. The less social folks may want to tag along occasionally, letting those with community gather the crowds.


Expression is the need to be artistic, to be seen, to be heard, to be felt. It is the need to express oneself through words, speech, actions, dress, art and self-creations of all type. Some examples are

Creating websites, writing newspapers, creating graphic art
Writing books, articles, poems
Reading poetry at a coffee house
Public speaking about something close to you
Creating art in all forms
Teaching creative thinking classes
Coaching children in creative arts
Dancing in all forms
Acting in movies, plays, and local theaters

Positive aspects: Meeting this need in a positive way can show in individual creativity, showing balance, getting in touch with ones own creativity, being a living expression of “ Who am I”

Negative aspects: Meeting this need in a negative way can lead to invasion of other people’s space (too much self-expression), self-centered, temperamental, blind to other’s value, lying, creating or expressing a false image.

People with the need for expression will be happiest when they are free to express their inherent creativity. If a person with this need is rigidly controlled or monitored, this could lead to this person inability to function.


A human being is a complex creation of body, heart, mind and soul. Our total health is dependent on meeting each of our needs, and as long as we can find constructive ways to meet our needs we shall continue to grow as human beings. To avoid fulfilling one of our needs will have an adverse effect on our total health and happiness as well as others in which we are involved. No human need can go unsatisfied without suffering the consequences. Thus the pursuit of all human beings is to recognize and satisfy the true needs of human life so that our relationships in our life will be healthy and gratifying. This involves the true meaning and purpose in life, hope that is will all turn out OK, finding love and acceptance, and placing our faith in a higher power who is capable of bringing total inner peace to the uproar of life on earth. Remember that healing of trauma and victimization involves finding constructive ways of satisfying our basic human needs. Talking to others about what your needs are, how they affect your life and how they affect your interaction is a valuable exercise to gain more understanding about yourself. Remember,give that what you wish to receive, and you wont have to worry about receiving.

Much of the information was repeated several times on purpose. The more times we hear what our needs actually are, the more likely we are to be able to identify what drives us to do the things that we do. Good luck!



Now comes the fun part. Putting what you’ve just learned into action. It’s time to start identifying what drives you to do the things that you do. Looking at the positive ways and the negative ways in which you are meeting your needs.

1) From section two, the Anthony Robbins version of basic human needs. Think
    of something that you do that makes you really happy. Write down all the six  
    basic human needs,( certainty, uncertainty, significance, connection, growth
    and contribute), and underneath the words draw a box, and with the zero to  
    ten scale, ten being the most fulfilled, write in the boxes underneath the
    words, the amount of the level of fulfillment for each of the needs.

2) Now think of something that you don’t like to do, but is necessary in your life
    for you to do, and do the same as above. This would be a class two
    experience. Find out the level of fulfillment you feel with this task.

3) Think of something in your life or a need in your life that you satisfy
    destructively. Design a strategy to satisfy this need in a constructively way.

4) From section 4, read through the list of needs, determine which of these are
    the highest priority in your life and which are the lowest. Rank each one of
    the needs from one to nine, One being the highest priority. Group the needs
    in groups of three’s, (three highest, three middle, three lowest)

For each one of the top three needs, think about how your life has
Been driven to satisfy those needs in a positive ways
Now think about how those needs have been met in destructive ways
Ask yourself this question, “What is happening in your life today that satisfies your highest needs.
Are your strongest needs not being satisfied in constructive ways, if not, what changes can be made to meet your needs in a constructive way
Think about people that are closest to you, what are their highest needs and how do they rank. How do they meet their needs either positively or negatively


To get the most out of this exercise, if you are not ready to do this one, please don’t read through it, it takes the shock, reality and surprise out of it. Take out a piece of paper, write every thing you want in person or significant other, I mean everything, even down to the most-tiny detail. ( hair color, integrity, kind of shoes, eyes, honesty, favorite color) I mean every little thing. You should end up with a list of about 30 – 50 items on your list.

Next. I repeat, if you are not ready to for this exercise, turn back now before its to late. Take the list that you have, and mark through all the things that are not that important, and you could probably live without.

Next. Again. Please turn back if your not actually doing this exercise. Now go back to the list. And mark through everything that you can live without. Leave only the items that you absolutely must have to have a happy relationship.

So what is this all about. These last few remaining items that you absolutely must have in your life for a happy relationship. In order to have these things, you must be those things yourself. No exceptions or variances.

Be Good To Yourselves :elephant:

Courtesy of my friend Linn ;}

September 19, 2006, 07:17:00 PM
Reply #1


  • Posts By Osmosis

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Very inspiring post, however I only had really skimmed over it, I felt that it was thorough enough to be called an A+ paper!


May 17, 2007, 06:48:42 PM
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Very good and interesting, there seems to be one thing missing though. What about the destructive need, if I missed it I apologize but sometimes a person simply needs to vent some negative and destructive energy and emotions be it through rant to a friend or actually damageing something. Once agian I apologize if I over looked it and it is a good article. A+ lol

it's not about getting what you want, it's about wanting what you got.