11 Dec

Why Re-invent the Wheel?

Image of Wheel link address

Have you ever been in a creative mood or you found yourself brainstorming with a group of people and after some time someone says “Let’s not reinvent the wheel”? Typically people say this when they have spent a significant period of time trying to create something that is unique and fresh instead of building on what has already been done. Reinventing the wheel is often considered to be a time stealer and a frustration enhancer.

I have spent my career working with people to help them improve their current state. I have always been curious as to what makes a person tick. The study of human behavior is my drug! However, my curiosity in observation and analyzing has helped me to navigate through my own life and also be more empathetic to others. It has also helped me to realize my purose – to help people find their inner happiness or what I like to call core happiness. I essentially help people to fall in love with their life using tools they did not know they had!

But let’s get back to the matter at hand.

Today I want to focus on psychologist, Abraham Maslow. Some of you may have heard about him in school. He is the psychologist that proposed the theory of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Essentially, Maslow theorized that humans needed to meet specific base needs in order to self-actualize (to realize their full potential and pursue it). 

Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs

Maslow initially suggested that in order to achieve the top need, all of the needs before it (below it) needed to be met. For example, in order to achieve the need of safety the physiological needs had to be met. To meet the need of love/belonging, the safety needs had to be met and so on and so forth. Other researchers and scientists have argued that these levels are continuously overlapping each other and therefore the level preceding does not actually have to be fully met to reach the next level. I tend to agree with that argument.

Where am I going with this?

If we take a look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and reflect on our own lives to become aware of how we are doing at each of the levels, what results might come up for you? If we became aware of our innate needs and created a plan to have our needs sufficiently (or abundantly) met, how might our lives look different? Instead of reinventing the wheel to figure out what the meaning of life/happiness is and how we can continually motivate ourselves to meet our full potential, why not build off of what has already been theorized? The act of reflection of our lives is like taking an audit – an examination of how we are doing. In this fast paced world we can easily get lost in the hustle and bustle and not take that needed time to reflect and take the necessary steps to take care of our basic needs.

Take a look at where you fair on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs as part of your daily/weekly personal audit. If there are areas you think that could use some work then I encourage you to start there. Are you thinking – how do you take an audit of your life? Let’s start somewhere simple – take a minimum of 5min per day to be still and do nothing. During this 5 min, I encourage you to allow whatever thoughts are on your mind to run through your mind and BE STILL. Start the meditation with 3 things you are grateful and end it with 3 things you are grateful for. This allows you to get into a positive frame of mind and allows you to put perspective on whatever you are going through.

Photo credit:  Stacey Koudys

Come back for more tips and strategies on how to do a personal audit. If you are in need of support, reach out and contact me at the number below and we can schedule a chat. You have all of the basic tools you need to succeed – but a little support never hurt anyone.

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Photo credit:  Jasmina Photography

Jennifer Slay is an award winning speaker and best selling author. She is a registered social worker, therapist and one half of the Thrive Experts. For more information or to book Jennifer to speak at your event, email her at info@jenslay.com or call 1-877-786-7190. 

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Photo credit: Jasmina Photography

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