Abraham Maslow Revisited

By February 15, 2010Uncategorized

Think back, for a moment, to your Psych 101 class regarding human behavior. While many experts in this emerging field were looking at the dark side of human nature, one individual decided to look at the best side. In his search for what motivates the individual to his or her highest potential, Maslow focused his attention on love rather than fear. A fair amount of human behavior is fear motivated. In a concept he coined as the “Hierarchy of Needs,” i’s fair to say that the needs of security are rooted in fear. Conversely, the quest for spiritual growth is inspired by love. If you look around today, you will note that an alarming amount of human behavior is fear-based. What does it take for you to reach your highest potential? Maslow might say that it takes an upward spiral progression in the quest for spiritual growth coming from a consciousness of love. The spectrum of human behavior can be seen played out daily, primarily the fear-based side, yet Maslow and people who honor his work, invite all of us to shift our motivation from fear (stress) to love (compassion). It’s not impossible, yet it does take practice.

• Stress Tip of the Day
Become the observer of your thoughts and actions, especially when you become stressed. Ask yourself if you are coming from a place of fear or love. The answer should be quite clear, even under the darkest of situations. This habit of observing your thoughts and behaviors will serve you well as the world inches its way toward a sustainable way of life, where the realization that greed is not a spiritual value (hero’s journey lesson #3) will become increasingly evident.

• Links Worth Noting:
One of my professional colleagues, Barbara Marx Hubbard, is one of the leaders of the human potential movement. She has initiated a new free on-line lecture series with a cast of many contemporary luminaries that we all would do well to listen to, as humanity struggles on its own Hero’s Journey back home. I highly recommend you check this out.


• Photo of the Day:
In honor of Abraham Maslow’s concept of self-actualization and spiritual growth, here is a photo of the infamous feeling of being one with the universe; the peak experience!

Quote for the Day:
“If your only tool is a hammer, then you’ll see every problem as a nail.” — Abraham Maslow

Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net.

© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.

Brian Luke Seaward

Author Brian Luke Seaward

More posts by Brian Luke Seaward

Join the discussion One Comment

  • Anonymous says:


    good to see that someone else appreciates Maslow’s ideas! Although I share many of the ideas presented by “positive psychology’, it bugs me that for the most part they do not give Maslow and the other humanistic psychologists much respect.

    just finished my dissertation on upward spirals of positive well-being. took me 40 years to develop–only 13 years in the phd program–the ideas are grounded in the notion of maximum human potential discussed by the humanists, but only became focused after I got into the notion of upward spirals. Barbara Fredrickson–a positive psychologist–has been the only one to discuss and research upward spirals consistently.

    I’m working on my first book on spirals for the average person now: few words, small words, and lots of cartoons.

    Mike Cochran

Leave a Reply