What Is a Need?


A need is a human need, a specific condition that causes dissatisfaction in a given situation or time. Needs are different from wants in that the deficiency of a need results in a clear adverse consequence. A lack of a need can result in disease, dysfunction, or even death. Listed below are some examples of needs and how they can make a person unhappy. You might be interested in learning more about these important conditions.

The word “need” is derived from the Old English words nied and nead. They both came from Proto-Germanic *naut (need) and *naudiz (“dead”).

Deficiency needs arise when an organism has a shortage of something. Satisfying this need prevents the subsequent unpleasant consequences. The top level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is known as “growth needs” and originates not from a lack of something but from the desire to grow. If a person meets a need for respect, he will feel more content and satisfied. The bottom two tiers are called “deficiency needs” and are the most common ones.

After satisfying their physical needs, people have a need for safety. People want to be in a stable situation where they can predict what will happen to them. A society can fulfill these needs through safety, social stability, and property ownership. Other emotional needs are belonging, which is related to social relationships and feelings of connection with others. The latter two types are the most basic of all human needs. They are often interrelated. So it’s important to know what these different categories mean.

When it comes to self-esteem, Maslow’s five-stage model of need has undergone several changes over the years. While a five-stage model was popular in the 1960s and 1970s, it has evolved to seven or eight stages. This model identifies physical, psychological, and social needs. As the lower levels of needs are met, people can move onto the next level, which is psychological and social. The top level is centered around personal esteem and a sense of accomplishment. Maslow’s idea of self-actualization is important today.

The theory of need has become a popular model in health and social care. While the hierarchy may not be completely hierarchical, the theory has helped psychologists and psychotherapists understand how people feel and what they need to be happy. In some cases, a person’s situation can lead them to fixate on a specific need, which could affect their happiness in the future. Those suffering from early childhood trauma may focus more on a physiological need, such as food. They may also become obsessed with food, despite having a stable home.

A needs assessment is an objective way to identify the gaps between what is happening today and where the organization can improve its products and services. The more comprehensive the needs assessment, the more likely an organization is to develop a plan for addressing these gaps. Action plans for closing these gaps may include improvements in product quality, enhanced communications to set customer expectations, and changes to policies or services. In short, need assessment helps organizations identify the gap between what they are offering and what customers want.