You may have studied Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in school, especially if you took a course in economics, psychology or philosophy. This model was proposed in the 1940’s, and has undergone a few tweaks, but is largely still relevant today.
What is it that you need versus what you want?
We all need the basics like food, water, and sleep to physically survive. We also need a sense of security and social connections to remain sane (and not be crazy stressed out).
Once we have those basics in place, we are able to thrive and grow. We may achieve things in school, at work, or within our communities that give us a sense of self confidence.
And, last, but not least, at the top of the triangle we have the extra credit vocabulary word and enlightened concept of self actualization. This means that we are living up to our highest potential. Everyone’s idea of self actualization is unique, and is tied to your individual gifts and talents. What are you really good at? And do you use your talents for good? (Please tell me you are using your powers for good!)
I’m bringing up this topic today, because the hierarchy of needs really struck a cord with me. I assessed myself and found that I was at the top of the triangle! I was pleasantly surprised to realize this fact, since I don’t feel much like a super star in everyday life. (In fact I pretty much never feel that way!)
It was a nice little (or big) reality check for me, and I hope it can be one for you, too. All the things you are doing, all the things you are learning and striving for… I have news for you…It’s More Than Enough!
We may strive to be our best selves everyday. It might not always work out, and we may have to start fresh tomorrow. It’s OK, you don’t have to be perfect or a celebrity, you just have to be you. And, the trick is to appreciate who you are and what you bring to the world. Just be you, do your best, and remember that it’s enough.
Sure, we may want a luxury car or a trip to Fiji, but those are just bonuses in the game of life. They are nice to have, but we’ll survive without them. When you get upset by all the things you want, but can’t have, do a self check and see where you land on the triangle. You may be pleasantly surprised!