"Out of the night that covers
Black as the pit from pole to
I thank whatever gods may be,
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of
I have not winced nor cried
Under the bludgeoning of
chance my head is bloody but
unbowed . . . . .
It matters not how strait the
gait, how charged with
punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate: I
am the captain of my soul."
(WE Henley, 1849-1903, from
Motivation ,want and
Motivation is a word used to refer to the reason or reasons
for engaging in a particular behavior, especially
human behavior as studied in psychology and
neuropsychology. These reasons may include basic
needs such as food or a desired object, hobbies, goal,
state of being, or ideal. The motivation for a behavior
may also be attributed to less-apparent reasons such as
Most people have experienced changes in ‘drive’ ,
Changes in the levels of motivation can be very subtle
and can be the result of the sum of several influences
rather than one. These influences can be either external
Human beings have wants and desires which
influence their behavior; only unsatisfied needs can
influence behavior, satisfied needs cannot.
Since needs are many, they are arranged in order of
importance, from the basic to the complex.
The person advances to the next level of needs only
after the lower level need is at least minimally
The further the progress up the hierarchy, the more
individuality, humanness and psychological health
a person will show.
About Abraham Maslow's:
Abraham Maslow was born in New York in
1908 and died in 1970, although various
publications appear in Maslow's name in
later years. Maslow's PhD in psychology
in 1934 at the University of Wisconsin
formed the basis of his motivational
research, initially studying rhesus
monkeys. Maslow later moved to New
York's Brooklyn College. Maslow's
original five-stage Hierarchy of Needs
model is clearly and directly attributable to
Maslow; developed a theory of
personality that has influenced a number
of different fields, including education.
This wide influence is due in part to the high level of
practicality of Maslow's theory model in 1940-50's USA, .
This theory accurately describes many realities of personal
experiences. Many people find they can understand what
Maslow says. They can recognize some features of their
experience or behavior which is true and identifiable but
which they have never put into words.
A key aspect of the model is the hierarchical
nature of the needs. The lower the needs
in the hierarchy, the more fundamental
they are and the more a person will tend
to abandon the higher needs in order to
pay attention to sufficiently meeting the
lower needs. For example, when we are
ill, we care little for what others think about
us: all we want is to get better.
The needs, are listed according to
Maslow's from basic (lowest, earliest) to
most complex (highest, latest) are as
The five needs
Physiological needs are to do with the maintenance of the
human body. If we are unwell, then little else matters until
Safety needs are about putting a roof over our heads and
keeping us from harm. If we are rich, strong and powerful,
or have good friends, we can make ourselves safe.
Belonging needs introduce our tribal nature. If we are helpful
and kind to others they will want us as friends.
Esteem needs are for a higher position within a group. If
people respect us, we have greater power.
Self-actualization needs are to 'become what we are
capable of becoming', which would our greatest
These are the needs that are most commonly discussed
and used. In fact Maslow later added three more needs
by splitting two of the above five needs.
Between esteem and self-actualization needs was added:
Need to know and understand, which explains the cognitive
need of the academic.
The need for aesthetic beauty, which is the emotional need
of the artist.
Self-actualization was divided into:
Self-actualization, which is realizing one's own potential, as
Transcendence, which is helping others to achieve their
How to use Maslow's hierarchy
in our daily life and business
The need to communicate in
English can be a good
motivation for learning English
Her teacher told her that she had
made much progress, and this
increased her motivation to
keep on learning.
My interest in medicine was my
biggest motivation to study
Some people do not have
motivation to change the way
The lazy learner needs a bit of
motivation to help him get
through the pain of learning
Within the organization:
Across a broad range of sectors,
including the business and
industrial community, there is
broad agreement that staff
motivation is important and
has a direct effect on
performance of staff and
therefore the organization.
Harmful decisions taken by others that are outside of the
Setting too many personal goals, it is better to concentrate
on one or two.
Problems from, say home life, can de-motivate during work.
The use of unfamiliar terminology.
High levels of stress.
Outside influences preventing staff carrying out their work.
Accusative company policies such as automatic sickness
reviews regardless of circumstance.
How to make a difference:
Well motivated staff tend to choose to do
Poor motivation can cause staff to blame the
"We cannot solve our problems with the same level of
thinking that created them." (Albert Einstein(
"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care
who gets the credit." (President Harry S Truman(
"Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find
out they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got
and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of
you." (William James, American Philosopher, 1842-1910 -
thanks Jean Stevens(
"The most important thing in life is not to capitalize on your
successes - any fool can do that. The really important
thing is to profit from your mistakes." (William Bolitho, from
'Twelve against the Gods'(