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Meeting the 6 Human Needs - Are yours destructive or resourceful?

We are all aware of the 5 basic human needs, which were believed to drive human behaviour: they are physiological and have one objective, the survival of our species and thus, ourselves. Think of water, shelter, air, warmth, health, etc. We feel a certain contentment when those are met. Though, if you look at a higher level, a more developed and psychological level, the part that differentiates ourselves from animals, this model misses the human needs connected to those. We all strive for a fulfilled life, the experience of meaning and purpose - don't we?

Have you ever heard of the 6 Human Need principle, thought of by Tony Robbins? (American Life Coach and Author) It is the believe that success and happiness can be found by fulfilling certain needs - every human being is motivated by his own set of human needs in his/her actions.

These six human needs are: (1) Certainty (security, safety, control); (2) Variety (challenges, change, adventure); (3) Significance (worthy, meaning, wanted); (4) Love and connection (communication, approval, attachment); (5) Growth (emotional, intellectual and spiritual); and (6) Contribution (give, care, serve).

The last two provide the structure for happiness and fulfillment, representing the spiritual needs, whereas the first four represent the personality needs which are sought to be met daily.

What are yours, or better, which one do you notice to be the most prevalent? How do you fulfill your needs - in a resourceful, neutral or destructive way?

If you meet your human needs through unhealthy and unsustainable habits, you'll soon notice feelings of frustration, anxiety, stress, and even depression. For example, to get attention and meet your need for (3) Significance or (4) Love and Connection, you'll be screaming at your partner since you learnt in your childhood that you can meet these needs with this behaviour. But you won't get the desired result, since your partner has his/her needs and you force him into a position he doesn't like. A vicious cycle.

Let's take another example, you found that to meet your need of Certainty (1), you are holding on to a relationship. You know your partner is abusive and not supportive, but you prefer that to being alone and to facing a new challenge (avoidance of uncertainty, no control, no feeling of monetary security). It has become a habit, a belief that you cannot do without your partner who actually also provides for you, so why would you leave him/her? On top of that, you care about your partner and he appreciates it, giving you a feeling of Significance (3), thus meeting another Human Need. Even if you take the courage to let go of your partner, you'll soon find another to fill this gap - you got addicted to fulfilling your needs with this, to you known, way.

The key is to discover these needs, resulting behaviors, values, beliefs and the vehicles we use to meet our needs. When we recognize and manage these, it uncovers what prevents someone from being happy and fulfilled. It also gives you insights what to look for during your efforts in living a fulfilled life and work balance.

Take the test to find out your top human needs - your Coach will guide you in this process of discovery and positive behavioural change towards actually meeting your desires, and getting out of this vicious cycle.

Sources: RobbinsMadanes Strategic Intervention Course

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