Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Accuracy of Assessment Test
Maslow Inventory Results
|Physiological Needs (17%) you appear to have everything you need to survive physically.
Safety Needs (47%) you appear to have an adequately secure environment.
Love Needs (70%) you appear to be unhappy with the quality of your social connections.
Esteem Needs (50%) you appear to have a medium level of skill competence.
Self-Actualization (48%) you appear to have an average level of individual development.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Accuracy of Assessment Test
Crystal Howard (April 12, 2010)
Abraham Maslow theorized that personality and human development were influenced by one’s ability to fulfill their needs. This theory is known as Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, in which the lower needs must be met in order for an individual to advance to the next level higher. The categories of needs defined by Maslow include (from lowest to highest): physiological needs, safety needs, belongingness and love needs, esteem needs, and self-actualization (Hergenhahn & Olson, 2007). Some psychologists following Maslow’s theory have created tests to assess an individual’s self reported perception of how well their needs are being met in order to gauge one’s progress toward self- actualization. This paper discusses one such test available on the website http://similarminds.com/maslow.html and the author’s ideas on how accurate the results are with identifying needs that may or may not be realized (in relation to Maslow’s defined theory). The use of such assessments in relation to psychological theories and personalities can provide some insight to participants regarding parts of their lives that may need more attention (in order for them to achieve a happier life or self-actualization).
A short online assessment title the Maslow Inventory consisted of a series of simple statements, of which the participant would rate the relation of the characteristic to their own life. The results of those rankings were then tallied relative to Maslow’s categories in the hierarchy of needs theory. According to the tallied, an objective explanation was provided regarding the fulfillment or lack of fulfillment in each category. See the author’s results in Table 1.)
Maslow Inventory Test Results
Physiological Needs |||| 17%
Safety Needs |||||||||||| 47%
Love Needs |||||||||||||||| 70%
Esteem Needs |||||||||||| 50%
Self-Actualization |||||||||||| 48%
Physiological Needs: you appear to have everything you need to survive physically. Maslow speculates that without satisfying basic needs (food, shelter, health) one cannot achieve higher levels of development. This generally makes sense, but the history of starving artists and successful artists who tanked after they became wealthy is important to note.
Safety Needs: you appear to have adequate environmental safety. Maslow speculates that without environmental stability (security, safety, consistency), you can’t progress to higher levels of development. Neuroscience research would appear to support this, as higher stress contributes to higher cortisol levels, which impair memory and thinking functions. However, low stress can also lead to obesity and cardiac degeneration. The lazier and weaker you become, the more stressful the most minimal tasks and stimuli become.
Love Needs: you appear to be unhappy with the quality of your social connections. Maslow speculates that discontentment in your connections with others stalls development. Whether the resolution of love needs comes with good relationships and/or learning to be more internally fulfilled is a question Maslow does not answer. But history would suggest many advanced minds had few relationships so this stage would seem to be more about resolving internal perceptions than as a call for measuring/achieving happiness by quality of external relationships.
Esteem Needs: you appear to have a medium level of skill competence. Maslow speculates that until you develop a good skill set (talent, trade, expertise that you excel at) you will be unable to develop further as an individual (much less reliably support yourself financially). This could mean being a good musician, painter, doctor, carpenter, etc. On some level this stage also requires getting over the need to be appreciated for that skill, internally and/or externally. Even if you develop a skill, you still might be hung up on the need to have other people validate you or you might internally doubt yourself. Then again, you might not be appreciated, or appreciate yourself because your skills are still too undeveloped.
Self-Actualization: you appear to have an average level of individual development. Maslow speculates that individual development is the pinnacle of existence, this means pursuing a career/life that really fits who you are and want to be internally (not based on external and societal expectations). The self actualized person is free from superficial concerns and is internally honest.
Maslow test, female, Version maslow1.08a, Basic 17 47 70 50 48
Since these results are based on self reported information the assessment is a very subjective representation of how the participant sees that their needs are met. The data provided shows average results for each need around 50 per cent, lower than 50 per cent identifies that not much work or need remains for that category, higher than 50 per cent indicates a weakness regarding the fulfillment of the need. This participants results show little need in physiological (food, shelter, basic needs) and safety needs. A weakness is shown in the love needs category indicating unhappiness and unfulfilling personal relationships. The esteem needs and self-actualization needs show average levels of fulfillment, indicating that some work is also needed to achieve these levels of need fulfillment.
In Maslow’s definition of the hierarchy the lower needs must be fulfilled in order to actively work on the higher needs. The basic concept is that “if lower needs are frustrated for a considerable length of time, the person will regress to the level of the hierarchy corresponding to those needs and will remain there until those needs are satisfied (Hergenhahn & Olson, 2007). In this author’s assessment, the greatest need is shown in love needs indicating that work is required to better fulfill healthy personal relationships or the author’s progress in personality and happiness may continue to revolve around poor relationship issues.
Failure to realize and work toward healthier relationships or healthier perceptions of relationships and social support will therefore dominate the author’s life and inhibit the fulfillment of the continued improvement of esteem needs and self-actualization needs. Personally, the author finds truth in the results as a general indicator that there is a fixation and level of unhappiness in the area of personal relationships in their life. Such an assessment does not provide concrete advice on how to proceed with successful fulfillment of each need, however it can provide a general area of one’s life that may show need for additional effort and attention.
In conclusion, one can learn much about themselves by using assessments to indicate areas of interest or fixation involving their personal needs. Essentially the more honestly a participant answers questions on an assessment, the more likely they are to agree with the results provided. In many cases, people are unaware of their own true needs or fixations and participating in an assessment may shed light on an area that may help them improve their own outlooks or situation. The use of such assessments in relation to psychological theories and personalities can provide some insight to participants regarding parts of their lives that may need more attention (in order for them to achieve a happier life or self-actualization).
Anonymous. (n.d.) retrieved on April 6, 2010 from http://similarminds.com/maslow.html
Hergenhahn, B.R. & Olson, M.H. (2007). An Introduction to Theories of Personality, (7th Ed.)
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson/Prentice-Hall.
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