Your basic human needs are the things that must be ‘met’ (satisfied) for you to be well

What are your basic needs?

  • Your basic needs are the things you need ( more than anything else) to be well
  • Your basic needs are the things you must feel like or be like in order to live a good life. (You must feel happy and you must be healthy to have a high-quality life, for example.)
  • Your basic needs are inside you
  • Your basic needs are things your body and brain need to feel like or be like in order to have a high-quality life.
  • Your basic needs are physiological and psychological things

Most people have the same basic needs. They need the same things in order to feel well, be well, and flourish.

Most people need to:

  1. Feel alive and healthy
  2. be safe and secure
  3. feel calm and comfortable
  4. be autonomous (free) and competent (able to do things)

Most people need to:

  1. have self-esteem
  2. achieve things and grow as a person
  3. have purpose and meaning
  4. feel hopeful and optimistic
  5. understand and be understood
  6. be interested
  7. feel playful
  8. care and to be cared for
  9. love and be loved
  10. belong and be respected
  11. feel fairly treated
  12. experience appreciation and wonder
  13. feel happy

How do you need to affect you?

Your needs affect how you feel

  • When your needs are met, you feel well, feel good, feel happy, and so on
  • When any of your needs are not satisfied, you will feel unwell, feel bad, and so on

Your needs affect what you do

  • When your body needs food, you will probably find it difficult to think about other things, and when food is put in front of you, you will probably do what you can to eat it
  • Your basic needs can have a very strong effect on what you do (on how you act or behave)

Your needs are connected with each other

  • When one of your needs is met, some of your other needs are also usually met
  • For example, if you feel loved, you are more likely to feel safe and secure, feel good about yourself, feel able to do things (competent), have a purpose in life, and feel like you belong.

It is important to know the difference between wants and needs.

When you need something you usually want it

  • Often, you want what you need
  • When you need food, for example, you typically want food because your brain/body tells you you’re hungry.

But most people sometimes want things they don’t really need

  • People often want more and more possessions, even when having those possessions doesn’t improve their quality of life
  • We often use the words need and needing when we really mean want and wanting

You always know what you want but you don’t always know exactly what you need

  • You are always aware of what you want (you know that you want some sweets, for example)
  • However, you are sometimes unaware of exactly what you need (It’s difficult to tell your body needs sugar or specific vitamins for example)

People are sometimes difficult to please. Your wants can be difficult to satisy. It can sometimes be difficult to get what you want. It is very easy to want more and more of something (even if you don’t really need it)

  • When people’s wants are satisfied, they often get bored and start to feel that they want something else. (This is not the case with basic needs.)
  • When you compare what you have with what other people have you might feel jealous and want what they have
  • Some people want more than other people so that they feel more important.
  • People sometimes try to persuade you to want things you don’t need.
  • People sometimes try to sell you things you don’t really need.

What you want affects how you feel. When you get what you want, you often feel well, feel good, feel happy, and so on. When don’t get what you want, you often feel unwell, feel bad, feel unhappy, and so on. But sometimes when you get what you want, you will not feel well, good or happy).

What you want also affects what you do

  • When you want something your body and brain are driven to get it
  • What you want and how much you want can have a very strong influence on your actions and behavior
  • Even if you feel don’t really need what you want.


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