Your Basic Human Needs Can Also Make You Anxious
When Covid-19 first hit even the most celebrated psychological theories were questioned due to the high level of anxiety of many around the world
As the old saying goes there are two things guaranteed in life- death, and taxes.
But that’s not all.
Because human behavior guarantees more than those two things. In fact, it pretty much guarantees that anything else is possible as well.
When you think you`ve seen everything that’s when you’ll notice or hear of another unusual act of behavior from someone in life that makes you say or think:
“I’ve seen it all now!”
But you haven’t until the next time something stranger occurs.
As all humans are capable of all things.
Sure we measure people’s worth from their past behavior but everyone has the possibility to do something out of character, if only now and then.
Take for example Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. That’s where Abraham Maslow who was an American psychologist designed a pyramid to explain human beings’ behavioral needs in life.
Those at the top of the pyramid were the more basic needs for survival and those towards the bottom were for the graduation of these needs once the top ones were met.
Firstly for self-fulfillment and self-actualization, people need air, food, drink, shelter, clothing, warmth, sex, and sleep.
If you think for a moment that these are too basic then think again.
Because although many people take these things for granted in life without any one of their basic needs being met there can be unusual personal behavior and even social anarchy.
During the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic when the virus came to many so-called first-world countries in Europe and America, many people behaved in somewhat irrational ways.
Although it was clear that the virus affected people’s respiratory system people panicked and fought off one another to purchase copious amounts of toilet paper and prepare for the first lockdown of their life.
Their buying power of this one product was so strong that it led to there being a shortage of toilet paper in many stores in major cities of the world.
Yet the reality was once people stayed a couple of meters away from others they weren’t going to get the virus.
It proved that when most human beings feel their basic needs are threatened they feel anxious and this state overpowers any other logical thinking pattern. They then take action according to how they feel and not necessarily what is the reality of the situation. In that instance, many people that panicked in this way were surrounded by the simple facts of the situation but it didn’t matter.
Anytime they turned on their television the news was dominated by the basic medical information that the virus spread through people’s respiratory system.
Even if you turned over and saw the ad breaks people would notice there were advertisements showing that social distancing was the most powerful deterrent to the virus. And if you didn’t watch television but purchased the newspapers or magazines the pandemic dominated the pages. And those that consumed online instead were getting fed advertisements on their Google search and their YouTube videos.
And when schools, workplaces, stores, religious services, and all daily services closed down everyone knew being 2 meters away was the only way to survive the virus.
Not long after social distancing became medically accepted as being the best weapon against the virus the debate was on about wearing masks to maximize people’s exposure to the infection.
Of course, you don’t have to be a medical doctor to figure out that covering your mouth and nose would give you more protection from an air-borne virus yet vast amounts of people objected to having to cover their main areas where the disease could enter into their respiratory system.
Again it defied simple logic.
Because they were still in a state of anxiety.
Many people allowed others into their houses or homes and sat beside people they knew and spoke about the reality of the situation because there’s no doubt that we all needed to share our opinions and bring good relationships closer during this time of universal upheaval in life. At that time everyone’s life was affected in some way if only for a period and when people’s lives are thrown into confusion or doubt they need to connect with others.
But in sharing conversations with others many got too close to them and the virus spread as a result.
Their need for company and trusted reassurance from a friend or colleague about the pandemic overpowered the need to stay a couple of meters apart.
Although they had so many forms of communication like mobile phones and the internet to contact people many others needed to be physically close to humans in what they felt was their time of need.
So although Maslow had incredible insights and proved the basic needs of human behavior the early months of the Covid-19 pandemic proved that people’s insistence to physically connect in the same close area is high up on their personal list when anxiety is part of the equation.
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