The 6 Fundamental Needs Of Humans

We are all aware of the 3 basic needs of life food, clothes and house often referred to as ‘roti’, ‘kapda’ and ‘makaan’. But here I am not going to talk about those physical needs for existence. I am referring to the 6 human needs that drive our day to day activities, decisions and ultimately our entire life events. Yes, it is in fact true, that any and everything we do each day of our lives is driven by one or more of these needs. Every human being craves to fulfill these needs and therefore takes any action necessary for it. Once you get to know about them you would immediately start relating to each of your activities and how indeed you were satisfying one of these needs. These 6 requirements have been articulated by the great author Tony Robbins in his seminars. Here, I would list and define each of them so you can identify which needs do you have the most.


The first and important need almost in all of us is the assurance factor. Assurance that your actions will not cause you any pain will have minimal risk of unhappiness and that they will produce the expected results. Familiarity with the end results is one of the reasons for our satisfaction. In order to satisfy certainty, we avoid trying the unusual. ‘What if it doesn’t work out?’ is the constant question lingering in our minds. This is why sometimes leaving that endless job and pursuing your passion keeps postponing, falling in love, getting married or making commitments feels scary and leaving the comfort of your home and stepping outside seems hard. All of these have the element of uncertainty that you might not end up with pleasing circumstances. Since there is a sense of relief in certainty, it drives our actions and therefore becomes one of our needs.



Ironic, but true, as much as certainty forms one important need, so does uncertainty. People want variety in their life. It could be in the form of a new goal, a new lesson, a change in daily routine, a new friend or connection, new looks etc. Knowing every moment of life before it happens is not as exciting as having little elements of surprises. Nobody goes on watching the same movie again and again. Even if they do, they would also watch new movies to balance the element of variety in their lives. These varieties can be both good and bad. The only thing to evaluate is whether you have a need for a positive, neutral, negative or empowering uncertainty in your life. The moment you figure it out, you would be able to take control of your needs. 


Significance is one need that almost everyone has felt in their lives, consciously or sub-consciously. This is the need to do something and feel important. Some examples evidently portray this need in us. For children, parents hold the most significance, as they are their guiding lights. When children grow up and want to be independent, parents try to become their friends and advise them the way they used to when they were younger. As happy as they are seeing their children stand up on their own, they fear to lose their significance. Men feel the need of significance more than women. They want to be the breadwinner of their family and hence establish their significance. So, the next time you are thinking, why is my husband not comforting me right now and is busy finalizing a business deal, he is probably acting according to his need of fulfilling his family goals and hence become significant. In a similar manner, all of us want to use our skills and feel significant in the eyes of others and ourselves.

Love and Connection

Man being a social animal, without a doubt has a need to connect and find love. We need to reach out to people. No one can live in complete isolation. Some find satisfaction within their family and work. Others want to be known to the world. The bigger the need for connection is in any person, the more they try to expand their reach in one way or the other. If it is easy to form cordial relations and establish connections through your work and personality, you choose this way. If it is only when you create a nuisance that people notice you, you would be compelled to choose it. Deliberate negative publicity has already taken a big stand in the media, hasn’t it? Why do destruction, terrorism, and unrest exist in the world? It is because people who got involved in these activities somehow failed to create connections or find love in other ways. Again, there could be slight segregation between men and women when it comes to love or connection. Women having more of an emotional quotient in them are inclined towards love. Men want to find connections and be in the eyes of as many people as they can. Steve Jobs became a legend satisfying his need to connect with the whole world. He convinced the best people to work for him with a mission that their product must reach as many people as possible.

Growth and Progress

We all know this need, we all talk about it all the time, it is that life must make progress. In this new corporate world, a lot of dissatisfaction among the working youth has been observed. If no progress is seen in any work, people either quit it or feel too lazy to do it. The mundane life of going to the office, with a slight hike probably in a year or so and not much of a difference at work has been leading to a lot of attrition. Leaving a job and pursuing something new is the only way that people see progress happening in their lives. Therefore, to satisfy this need for growth, people start acquiring varied skill sets. If people understand the need for progress, they keep learning new things to quickly move on to the next levels.


The last need imbibed in human beings is the need to make a contribution. Most people find satisfaction by contributing their skills to make people around them happy. These contributions also satisfy the need for significance. The feeling of contribution makes people happy. Everyone feels the need to give a helping hand to the needy. A sense of contribution is also felt in sharing our happiness with others. We want to share our victories, our travel photographs, our adventures and experiences with people around us. People’s reactions to our contributions satisfy our need for significance.

Knowing about all the needs is the only way to identify what needs do you have most prominently in yourself. Most often, if any three needs can be satisfied by a task, it is most likely that you would do it. Wise men would use this fact to utilize their needs towards their goals. Control the ones that are distracting you away from your goals. Let the ones that lead you towards them grow further. If you find it hard to do or need expert guidance, chat with me on Winners Nest by clicking on the WhatsApp icon. Wait no longer for your life to change for the best.

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Suresh is a certified NLP coach, accomplished decision science leader, performance coach, certified mind therapist and spiritual mentor. Suresh has over 20 years of experience in predictive analytics, product engineering, solution architecture, pre-sales, program management & operations. An accomplished hands-on leader excelling in building complex Artificial Intelligence (Deep Learning, NLP, Computer Vision) products in Banking, Pharma, Insurance and Digital Marketing domains to his clients around the world.

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