Abraham Maslow and the Hierarchy of Needs
After Abraham Maslow met Kurt Goldstein, who originated the concept of self-actualization, he began his movement for humanistic psychology. Early in his career Maslow worked with monkeys and he noticed that some needs took precedence over others. Maslow took this observation and created the theory of the Hierarchy of Needs. These needs were considered current motivations if they were not actualized. These needs are the Physiological Needs, the Safety and Security Needs, the Love and Belonging Needs, the Need for Self Esteem and the Need for Self Actualization (Boeree, 2006). As we consider the practical use of the Psychology of Personality in the workplace, fulfilling the needs of an employee as a means to motivation is an effective tool. The Theory of Human Motivation
Maslow's paper, "A Theory of Motivation" is a classic that was first published in the Psychological Review in 1943. In the introduction Maslow lays out the foundation for his theory and makes the statement that "Man is a perpetually wanting animal". While most of theories we examine center their study on the formation of the individual's personality characteristics and traits, Maslow has centered his study on the present state of the needs of the individual and fulfilling them. We see that the individual learns to adapt to his environment to actualize the current need and defends that channel if it is threatened. While many of the tools an individual seems to garner from whatever personality theory is invoked, the motivations are the triggers that bring them out.
Our cravings for food, water and air are physiological needs we cannot live without. Those that will kill us sooner take a higher precedence in fulfillment. Maslow speaks of "Homeostasis" which is the "process for (1) the water content of the blood, (2) salt content, (3) sugar content, (4) protein content, (5) fat content, (6) calcium content, (7) oxygen content, (8)...
References: Boeree, George C (2006) "Personality Theories: Abraham Maslow", last viewed May 1, 2006 at http://www.ship.edu/%7Ecgboeree/maslow.html
Maslow, Abraham (1943) "A Theory of Human Motivation", Psychological Review, 50, pages 370 – 396, last viewed May 1, 2006 at http://psychclassics.yorku.ca/ Maslow/motivation.htm
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