Reversed Order of Needs

Even though needs are generally satisfied in the hierarchical order shown in Figure 10.1, occasionally they are reversed. For some people, the drive for creativity (a self-actualization need) may take precedence over safety and physiological needs. An enthusiastic artist may risk safety and health to complete an important work. For years, the late sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski endangered his health and abandoned companionship to work on carving a mountain in the Black Hills into a monument to Chief Crazy Horse.

Reversals, however, are usually more apparent than real, and some seemingly obvious deviations in the order of needs are not variations at all. If we understood the unconscious motivation underlying the behavior, we would recognize that the needs are not reversed.

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