Some Issues That Individuals Face

Fulfilling Personal Needs:

All people strive throughout life to fulfill a large range of needs. Inability to fulfill important needs may trigger enduring discontent, unhappiness, stress, and suffering. A hierarchy of needs, first described by psychologist Abraham Maslow, range from the most basic, to those most far reaching. The experience of suffering entails a sense of harm and threat shadowing, and potentially overcoming us. Humans often judge suffering as: avoidable/unavoidable, desired/undesired, meaningful/not meaningful, and needful/needless. The hierarchy of needs include:

  • The Physical Needs: The need for air, food and water, shelter, rest, and sleep.
  • The Need for Security: Physical safety and health, law and order, ability to trust, safety of family and property, opportunity for employment, and stability of culture.
  • Need to be Loved and Belong: The need to belong to a family, an emotionally and or sexually intimate relationship, a group, culture, institution, to have friends, to receive and give love and nurturing, and to be appreciated.
  • The Need for Esteem: Self-esteem, self-respect, to feel unique as an individual, to enjoy positive regard from others, to achieve and maintain prestige, power, status, and desired responsibility.
  • The Need to Achieve One’s Full Potential: Experience meaning and purpose in life, creativity, spontaneity, spirituality, morality, and adherence to one’s values.

Maintaining Values

Values are core goals or standards that provide meaning, purpose, and direction in life. When life circumstances force us to abandon our values, mental and physical health problems may ensue. Examples of values that we embrace, and try to preserve include ( Borrowed from “A Values Card Sort”, by William R. Miller, Janet C’de Baca, Daniel B.Matthews, and Paula L. Wilbourne):

  • Acceptance- to be accepted as I am
  • Accuracy- to be correct in my opinions and beliefs
  • Achievement- to have important accomplishments
  • Adventure- to have new and exciting experiences
  • Art- to appreciate or express myself in art
  • Attractiveness- to be physically attractive
  • Authority- to be in charge of others
  • Autonomy- to be self-determined and be free of depending on others
  • Beauty- to appreciate beauty around me
  • Belonging- to have a sense of belonging, being part of
  • Caring- to take care of others
  • Challenge- to take on difficult tasks and problems
  • Comfort- to have a pleasant and comfortable life
  • Commitment- to make enduring, meaningful commitments
  • Compassion- to feel and act on concern for others
  • Complexity- to embrace the intricacies of life
  • Compromise- to be willing to give and take in reaching agreements
  • Contribution- to make a lasting contribution in the world
  • Cooperation- to work collaboratively with others
  • Courage- to be brave and strong in the face of adversity
  • Courtesy- to be considerate and polite towards others
  • Creativity- to create new things or ideas
  • Curiosity- to seek out, experience, and learn new things
  • Dependability- to be reliable and trustworthy
  • Diligence- to be thorough and conscientious in whatever I do
  • Duty- to carry out my duties and obligations
  • Ecology- to live in harmony with the environment
  • Excitement- to have a life full of thrills and stimulation
  • Faithfulness- to be loyal and true in relationships
  • Fame- to be known and recognized
  • Family- to have a happy, loving family
  • Fitness- to be physically fit and strong
  • Flexibility- to adjust to new circumstances easily
  • Forgiveness- to be forgiving of others
  • Freedom- to be free of undue restrictions and limitations
  • Friendship- to have close, supportive friends
  • Fun- to play and experience pleasure
  • Generosity- to give what I have to others
  • Genuineness- to act in a manner that is true to who I am
  • God’s Will- to seek and obey the will of God
  • Gratitude- to be thankful and appreciative
  • Growth- to keep changing and growing
  • Health- to be emotionally and physically well and healthy
  • Honesty- to be honest and truthful
  • Hope- to maintain a positive and optimistic outlook
  • Humility- to be modest and unassuming
  • Humor- to see the humorous side of myself and the world
  • Imagination- to have dreams and see possibilities
  • Industry- to work hard and well at my life tasks
  • Inner Peace- to experience personal peace
  • Integrity- to live my daily life in a way that is consistent with my values
  • Intelligence- to keep my mind sharp and active
  • Intimacy- to share my innermost experiences with others
  • Justice- to promote fair and equal treatment for others
  • Knowledge- to learn and share useful information
  • Leadership- to inspire and guide others
  • Leisure- to take time to relax and enjoy
  • Loved- to be loved by those close to me
  • Loving- to give love to others
  • Mastery- to be highly competent in one or more activities
  • Mindfulness- to live conscious and mindful of the present moment
  • Moderation- to avoid excesses and find a middle ground
  • Monogamy- to have one close, loving relationship
  • Music- to enjoy or express myself in music
  • Nonconformity- to question and challenge authority and norms
  • Novelty- to have a life full of change and variety
  • Nurturance- to encourage and support others
  • Openness- to be open to new experiences, ideas, and opportunity
  • Order- to have a life that is well managed and organized
  • Passion- to have deep feelings about ideas, activities, or people
  • Patriotism- to love, serve and protect my country
  • Popularity- to be well liked by many people
  • Power- to have control over others
  • Practicality- to focus on what is practical, prudent and sensible
  • Progressive- to promote social fairness, justice, and question the status quo
  • Protect- to keep safe those I love and care about
  • Provide- to give what my family and others need
  • Purpose- to have meaning and direction in my life
  • Rationality- to be guided by evidence, logic, and reason
  • Realism- to see things and behave practically
  • Responsibility- to make and carry out responsible decisions
  • Risk- to take chances or gamble
  • Romance- to have intense, exciting love in my life
  • Safety- to be protected and secure
  • Self-Acceptance- to accept myself as I am
  • Self-Control- to be disciplined in my own actions
  • Self-Esteem- to feel good about myself
  • Self-Knowledge- to have a deep and honest understanding of myself
  • Service- to assist and be helpful to others
  • Sexuality- to have an active and satisfying sex life
  • Simplicity- to live life simply, with minimal needs
  • Solitude- to have time and space where I can be apart from others
  • Spirituality- to embrace what is bigger and greater than us
  • Stability- to live a life that remains fairly consistent
  • Tolerance- to accept and respect those who differ from me
  • Tradition- to follow respected patterns of the past
  • Virtue- to live a morally pure life
  • Wealth- to have plenty of assets and money
  • World Peace- to work to promote tranquility in the world
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