Certainty: We all need to know that we can avoid pain and achieve some level of comfort in life. Certainty is about comfort, stability, security, safety. You can meet the need for certainty by never trying anything because it is too scary, or by simply choosing to believe in yourself. You can meet it through spiritual faith or by taking drugs, and even depression. It is anything that makes us feel safe and comfortable.
Variety / Uncertainty: This is the need that makes us feel alive, it is the spice of life, and it is anything that stretches our range, be that emotional, spiritual, mental or physical, anything that stimulates us and gets us out of our comfort zone. It is through this need that we grow. Some people meet this need by trying new things, meeting new people, see new places, learning new things or doing high risk activities and risking their lives. We can meet this need through radical emotional shifts or drugs. When we meeting this need in a positive way we grow and feel alive.
Significance: We all need to feel special, unique, needed or wanted. This is something all human beings need. You can meet this need by being the best at something or by being the worst, by achieving something or by having a significant problem that you can tell people about. You can get significance through a unique way of dressing, a unique sense of humour or by dominating someone through power. One of the quickest ways to significance especially with a stranger is anger or violence. We can also get significance by contributing or feeling loved by someone.
Connection / Love: We all need to feel connection with others, and we all strive and hope for love. Most people in their intimate relationships settle for connection because it is safer, you don’t have to put as much out there. To go to love means we have to risk being venerable and face one of the biggest human fears that we won’t be enough. This is more about uncertainty, whereas connection is more about certainty.
Growth: Everything in life is either growing or dying. When we stop growing we start dying, and any area of our lives that is not growing / progressing is dying / regressing.
Contribution: This need is about going beyond our needs and giving to others. You can contribute to someone or to something, but essentially it is about putting other first.
Ask yourself which of these needs do you values most and how are you going about meeting them? Are you meeting any of these needs is negative or attainable ways? Do you have any behaviours you want to change or break free from? If so which needs are driving those behaviours?