We all deserve to make it to the top

Writer and Mom Meagan Francis has published her own version of Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs – the Mother’s Hierarchy of needs at her site The Happiest Mom.

hierarchy of needs for Creative Moms

At the top of her pyramid she lists some things that aren’t necessary for survival, or a measure of self worth or friendships even, but things that are necessary for true contentment.  Way up there, in the “Self Actualization” section she lists: Time to think, read, create, hobbies, passion and adult conversation.

This top level of the pyramid won’t just happen for you.  Not with the wiping of noses, the packing of lunches, the laundry and vacuuming and blowing of bubbles.  It is work to find time for reading, creating and hobbies.  It’s difficult to find our passion after long days of pouring our hearts out to fulfill the needs of others.

These top level activities are the very things I try to write about here at Maternal Spark.  I do this because I know they are important for my happiness – and yours.  Remember to nourish this part of yourself on a daily basis because we all deserve to be happy.  We all deserve to grow our full selves and learn what makes us flourish.

There will come a day when our children no longer need us for things that used to take up much our our time. One day they will move out and have babies of their own and then what will we be if we’ve neglected this portion of happiness?

Things you can do right now to work towards a full and happy mind:

  • Read – it doesn’t have to be much, a page, a chapter, a blog entry.  Go read something you enjoy.
  • Reflect – take a moment for yourself and mentally walk through an activity you enjoy, but don’t have time for. Think about the smell of your paints, the feeling of brush on canvas.  Or if you’re a knitter think about the softness of the wool and the sound of the needles clacking together.  It will fire you up and encourage your passions.
  • Reserve – Plan to set aside a bit of time to get hands on with your creativity.  Find an hour.  An hour where you can send the kiddos packing for a picnic in the park with their daddy.  An hour where you can dive into something that feeds your top level needs.  Just an hour, it’s not much but it’s the difference between connecting with yourself and, well, not connecting with yourself.

Reviewing this diagram has also made me reflect on the fact that I’m very fortunate to be able to focus efforts on the higher level items.  I’m lucky to be in a safe home with food in the fridge and a loving family who supports who I am.   I feel very grateful at this moment, how about you?

thanks to Megan for permission to share her diagram on Maternal Spark!

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  1. That is a lovely visual reminder of those things we forget. I think I’ll post it right over my laptop … where I spend most of my time selfishly concentrating on the top level of the pyramid! It took a long time – about ten years – before I finally was able to do that for myself, and surprisingly, my family’s been cool with it. Now that my girls are 9 & 11, I am regaining my life and they are contributing to that without even knowing, just by encouraging me.

    All the same, I had to laugh that “Sleep” was the bottom rung.

  2. Finally, Maslow got interesting – he seemed so ho-hum when I was at uni but this is something that I can relate to! thanks!

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