AC4P with Dr. Scott Geller 005 | Maslow's Revised Hierarchy of Needs

Many of us have taken a course on motivation and are not new to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, but did you know that toward the end of his life Maslow revised this hierarchy? 

Join Dr. Scott Geller as he talks about how and why Maslow revised his ever-famous hierarchy and how it is still relevant in today's world. With everything going on with social issues, a global pandemic, elections, social media frenzies, what can we learn from the newest addition?


Dr. Scott Geller (00:23):
Anyone who's taken a course on motivation or the psychology of motivation has heard about Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Why? Because it makes such common sense. Here's how it goes. It's a hierarchy. First, we satisfy our lower-level needs. Namely physiological needs. We got enough sleep. We have enough food, we feel physiologically satisfied. Then we move up and then we satisfy safety and security. So now we don't have enough food, enough sleep. And we, and now we're, we feel safe and secure. And then we worry about social needs socially acceptance. Okay. So what's a hierarchy. Now we feel socially accepted. We feel a sense of belonging and we move up and now we got self-esteem. Self-esteem a feeling of worthiness, a feeling that, you know, I'm okay, I'm good next level. And by the way, we don't have to satisfy these needs completely now lower level.

Dr. Scott Geller (01:26):
I have to have enough food, but sometimes we don't feel completely safe and we still move up to worry about or to deal with social acceptance. Then self-esteem then we reached the top, at least many people think it's the top. Maybe some of you remember the word self-actualization that for years has been the top of Maslow's hierarchy of needs. The best we can be. In fact, I'm betting that many of you took a course on motivation in college, or maybe a high school you've heard about self-actualization what does that mean? It means you've reached the top. It means you've, you've satisfied all you wanted to reach. You know, you know, when I was in college, I asked the professor, what does it mean? You see, I don't want someone telling me some concept unless they can put it in terms of behavior. I want to know what do I have to do to say I'm self-actualized.

Dr. Scott Geller (02:26):
So I asked my professor, I said, sir, how will I know if I'm self-actualized and he looked me square in the eyes. And he said, Scott self-actualize means you've done it all. You've made the difference you expect to make in life. And then he said, and Geller, I don't think you'll ever get there. And you know, he was right. I don't think I'll ever believe that I have done enough. Or as I have done all I wanted to do before I leave this life. But you know, what's really interesting. And so true. The top of the ladder is not self-actualization Maslow changed the hierarchy in 1970 Maslow passed away at the age of 62 young man, really? And he said he was wrong. The best you can be is not self-actualization. It's self-transcendence, it's going beyond yourself for somebody else. It's not a selfie.

Dr. Scott Geller (03:35):
It's a helpy his final book was published by his wife in 1971, check it out. It's called the farthest reaches of human nature. And that's where he explains that the top is self-transcendence. But guess what? You can help others before. You've climbed all that entire ladder. In fact, don't, you know that when you reach out and you help someone else, you fuel your own self-esteem you feel better about yourself. And in fact, you might in fact gain some friends and thus your social acceptance needs will be satisfied. Here's the, here's the point, the top of the ladder. You don't have to go through all these others. Many people haven't Gandhi. Gandhi did not mother Teresa. They didn't satisfy all these needs and they sacrificed to help others. I think that's, we are on our CA in our culture right now. We need to teach people that the best we can be is not self-actualization it's self-transcendence.

Dr. Scott Geller (04:41):
And when you get to that level, you will fuel. You will help to satisfy your other needs. Doesn't this make common sense. You've all been there. When you've helped someone, you feel better about yourself. And by the way, when that someone shows you some gratitude, you even feel better about yourself, and you might also feel more socially accepted. So that's Maslow's hierarchy of needs. I should say the revised hierarchy of needs and the realization that you best you can be is not a selfie. It's not about self it's about others. And when you get there, you will feel better about yourself.

Leave a reply