Take a look at the hierarchy if you haven’t seen it for awhile. Check out each layer and ask yourself where you are in your life currently?
The bottom two needs are what we all know we need to survive and feel safe. These needs are essential to our existence.
But, look what comes next. Right after these very basic needs of survival we have the need for love and belonging.
To me, this emphasizes the importance that human beings were not created to live alone, disassociate from others, and be able to handle all of life’s happenings without the support from people around them. Furthermore, it states “belonging” – to affiliate with others. This to me is community. This is about connection.
With Maslow’s Hierarchy, he intended for people to move up the scale of needs. As needs were met at each level the person could then go on to the next level and actualize that part of themselves.
I think love and belonging is often overlooked as we logically know we need good self-esteem and we all desire self-fulfillment at the highest level – so we try to jump there as quickly as possible. Skipping over the critical importance of having a tribe, feeling connected to those around us, and feeling that we belong.
But, without feeling a deep connection and sense of belonging with other human beings– can we really make it to self-actualization?