Do you remember those first staggering moments of lucidity? The instant when you glimpsed the potential held in becoming a man? Suddenly your bleak future dissipated into an expansive blank canvas, and you truly felt the creative power of an artist.
Likely though, the sweet melody of hope meekly simpered out upon reaching a harsh understanding. This world is built on the irrefutable laws of nature. Willpower isn’t good enough when your physical and emotional needs are neglected. In order to reach our highest aspirations as men, we must abide by our hierarchy of needs.
The Hierarchy: How to Reach Your Goals
In 1943, Abraham Maslow created a framework for human motivations that’s still used by psychologists to this day. It’s called Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. It’s a pyramid structure containing the basic elements that must be fulfilled for any one human to reach a state of self-actualization; i.e. becoming the kind of man you desperately desire to be.
To ascend the pyramid, the lower needs must be met first. Once each step is achieved, you move up the pyramid until reaching the top. While Maslow’s hierarchy is divided between five levels. We can effectively sieve it down to three main components. Let’s start by analyzing physical needs, the base of the pyramid.
This encapsulates both the physiological and safety portions of Maslow’s hierarchy. If you’re consistently stressed having a roof over your head, or where your next meal is coming from, you’ll have less time and effort to spend on non-survival based goals.
This is simply a matter of ensuring your body is running at full power 24/7. There’s little point in lifting if you can’t afford both a membership and the groceries required to repair yourself. Similarly, dating women falls off the priority list when you’re not even sure you’ll live past the week. So, let’s tally up the most essential physical needs you’ll need to fulfill:
A clean and quiet living space that fits your budget. Choose your roommates carefully.
Food: Eat well and eat nutritiously. Avoid skipping meals if possible.
Make enough of it to so that your life doesn’t revolve around skipping corners.
Different locations require different measures for achieving security. Make sure you feel safe, especially in your own home.
Wear clothes that fit well and match your personal style. Look fly and you’ll feel fly.
This portion includes both the esteem and love portions of the pyramid. Broken down further it can include such elements as friendship, intimacy, family relationships, independence, responsibility, and prestige. These largely correlate to our abilities as social creatures.
There’s a danger in neglecting our emotional faculties whether we like to admit it or not. Failure to uphold them may result in apathy, depression, and perhaps more severe disorders. On the other hand, maintaining these needs results in massive confidence boosts and motivates us to push harder than before. Below are several examples of what you’ll want to acquire:
Vital to avoiding loneliness (however manageable loneliness may be). It’s also beneficial to keep up interactions with other people to improve your social skills.
Whether you’re looking for a ringer or casual fun, easing pent-up sexual tension can improve concentration in other areas of life.
A set routine maximizes efficiency. And a productive lifestyle means less regrets and more positive feelings about yourself.
Besides the superficial perks, regular exercise releases endorphins which keeps you feeling incredible.
This is the state that Maslow described as humans living out their full potential. This includes both potential for inner development and of achievements in the external world. The former involves deep introspection and a craving to constantly analyze our own inner vices and biases. The latter is self-explanatory. Reaching new heights in whatever passion or profession we engage in.
The road to self-actualization is constantly wavering and effervescent. It demands a never-ending stream of effort to reach, and maintenance when reached. Here we’ll list several habits of people who engage in self-actualization:
A moral and ethical compass is used to guide one through the treacherous ravines of life. These principles are typically reached after many years of self-reflection.
Successful people grind harder than anyone else to meet their visions. The hard work is always worth the end product for these individuals.
In that same vein, the truly ambitious are unafraid to try new things. For to cling to the familiar, and only the familiar, means stagnation.
Staying True to Yourself:
This entails an ironclad disposition against the mindset of the masses. You learn to think for yourself and to objectively observe public discourse.
Nothing makes our blood run rich like well-established goals and passions to live for. Yet the path to prosperity is anything but smooth. Should the bumps in the road prove too hazardous, take a breather and observe your own hierarchy of needs.
You’ll forever be destined to climb uphill until your baser needs have been met. Once the stress and emotional turmoil has cleared away, your previous excuses for procrastination, hesitation, or failure will fade away. And with that, your vision of yourself as a self-actualized person will come into focus. Then and only then will the world become your canvas. Achieve your goals today!