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Glasser's Five Needs

 

Explanations > Needs > Glasser's Five Needs

Survival | Love and belonging | Power or recognition | Freedom | Fun/learning | See also

 

William Glasser, in his 'Choice Theory' (renamed from his 'Control Theory') detailed five needs that are quite close to Maslow's Hierarchy, but with some interesting twists.

Survival

This is similar to Maslow's physiological and safety level. They are basic needs which are of little interest unless they are threatened.

Love/belonging/connection

This is similar to Maslow's belonging need and recognises how important it is for us as a tribal species to be accepted by our peers.

Power/significance/competence

This maps to some extent to Maslow's esteem need, although the power element focuses on our ability to achieve our goals (which is perhaps a lower-level control need).

Freedom/autonomy

Freedom is the ability to do what we want, to have free choice. It is connected with procedural justice where we seek fair play.

Fun/learning

'Fun' is an interesting ultimate goal. When all else is satisfied, we just (as Cyndi Lauper sang) 'want to have fun'.

Or...

In his earlier 'Reality Theory', Glasser identified control, power, achievement and intimacy as key needs.

See also

Glasser, W (1965). Reality Theory. New York: Harper & Row.

Glasser, W. (1985). Control Theory: a new explanation of how we control our lives. New York: Harper & Row.

Glasser, W. (1998). Choice Theory: A New Psychology of Personal Freedom, New York: Harper Collins.

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