What motivates you? Abraham Maslow once tried to figure it out and, through the research that he performed (which focused heavily onĀ one demographic, by the way), he came up with a pyramid of needs that must be met in order to ‘move on’ to the next (though, it was understood that context and culture played a part). The original pyramid looks a lot like this:

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, found at Alexandria Heston’s Reality of Design.

But there are problems with this pyramid. First, if I suddenly find myself feeling hungry, do I lose all of my friends? If I find myself without work, will I always lose the desire to advance to something else? These needs overlap a lot more often than we recognise, even though fields like education continue to look at things through Maslow’s original lens.

SciShow Psych made a video that we can consider as we continue our unit on How to Contribute to Society, which provides a bit more information about how Maslow’s pyramid could be seen today and whether or not psychologists genuinely still use it:

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