Abraham Maslow’s Views on Motivation

Abraham Maslow believed that motivation was a product of individual efforts to satisfy the five basic needs. In his theoretical exploration, Maslow developed a hierarchy of needs that highlighted the different levels that can be used to categorize personal needs. The basic needs are ranked from physiological, safety, social to esteem and self-actualization. From this realization, this order presents an interesting scenario that provokes the thought process of individuals by highlighting the different aspects, which shape outcomes in the contemporary world. Importantly, physiological needs hinder individuals from concentrating on different activities because of their impact on the normal functioning of the body. These needs overrule other needs in Maslow’s hierarchy because of their influence on the thought process of individuals at any given time. Therefore, Maslow’s theory of needs defined motivation according to the ability of individuals to overcome different needs that interfere with their ability to accomplish their desired goals.

In developing his arguments on motivation, Maslow settled on a simplistic approach that outlined different outcomes, which affected the ability of individuals to achieve their expected results. From this realization, Maslow actualized his theory by drawing five basic assumptions that contributed towards understanding the concept of motivation (Schulte, 2018). Notably, Maslow stated that motivation was earned if the organism was motivated at any given time. In the same vein, his theory assumed that motivation was complex and unconscious motives define a person’s general behavior. By assuming that people are often motivated by one need or another, Maslow created an enabling environment for individuals to prioritize their needs before focusing on achieving desired outcomes.

On culture, Maslow indicated that different population groups have a varied understanding of motivation. However, every person regardless of their cultural background are motivated by the same needs. In supporting his argument, Maslow indicated that the basic needs affecting people’s way of life could be arranged in a hierarchy as shown below.

Fig 1.0 Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

From the above diagram, the most pressing needs are physiological needs because of their nature that hinders individuals to focus on other activities in their immediate environment. However, as one goes upwards in the hierarchy, the impact of the needs on their ability reduces drastically, a move that Maslow used to highlight the concept of motivators (Suyono & Mudjanarko, 2017). According to Maslow, some needs must be satisfied before the higher needs can become motivators. For this reason, prioritizing needs provides one with an opportunity to achieve their expected results because of their ability to overcome emerging and underlying issues.

Christians use the Bible for spiritual nourishment and inspiration on different aspects of life. On many occasions, the Holy Bible creates different scenarios to provide people with hope regarding their ability to overcome problematic situations in their immediate environment. Romans 8:31 says, “What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” From this Bible verse, Christians are encouraged to trust in the Lord because of His abilities that cannot be equated with human power. Individuals are urged to focus on other aspects because of God’s timely intervention that enables them to overcome all underlying issues in their surroundings. From this realization, solving a need creates an enabling environment for motivation, which allows individuals to accomplish their desired goals and objectives in life.




Schulte, M. (2018). Adult learning degree and career pathways: Allusions to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The Journal of Continuing Higher Education66(1), 62-64.

Suyono, J., & Mudjanarko, S. (2017). Motivation engineering to employee by employees Abraham Maslow theory. Journal of Education, Teaching and Learning2(1), 27-33.

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