Maslow’s Pyramid of Needs


Discover Your Purpose

This is an elegant desk-top tool designed to help us decide our priorities – based on the most iconic visual in modern psychology, Abraham Maslow’s Pyramid of Needs. Play around with the pyramid’s layers (each representing a particular human goal) in order to bring your own ambitions more clearly into focus.


1. Study the five segments of the pyramid:

  • Self-actualisation
  • Esteem
  • Love/Belonging
  • Safety
  • Physiological

2. Rank the five in order of how much priority you are currently giving to each one of them in a practical sense in your life, in terms of time, money and effort. (Do not arrange them according to how much you like them or theoretically esteem them, but according to what an outside observer, watching your actions in an average week, would conclude you were invested in.) The bottom piece should be the one representing what you give least practical attention/time to pursuing; the top piece should be the one you give most practical attention/time to.

3. Contrast the order they are in with the order Abraham Maslow gave them.

4. Insofar as the difference might offend you, revealing that you are not living the life you believe in deep down, gently – and with infinite kindness to yourself – begin to change your life.

Five wooden blocks with bag | 140 x 120 x 30mm | Instructions included

The School of Life is a London-based organisation built to help us find calm, self-understanding, resilience and connection – especially during troubled times.