Question 2. Economic needs and benefits, their classification


Before listing the natural needs of a person, it is necessary to determine what they are in general. To do this, you can turn to the works of psychologist Evgeny Pavlovich Ilyin. The scientist assured: it is important to separate the needs of the body and the individual. They have different backgrounds. The body's needs may be unconscious. We breathe and don’t attach any importance to it - we need oxygen, and that’s normal. But the needs of the individual are always conscious. A person wants to get a diploma at a university in order to feel self-sufficient - and for this he deliberately studies well.

We must also remember that every natural biological need of a person is associated with a need. And this does not mean a shortage of something. Namely need. Or desirability - in the case of social or intellectual needs.

Classification of desires according to A. Maslow

If you find out that a person has a need for shelter, food and a healthy lifestyle, then you have identified a primary need. Need forces an individual to strive to obtain essential benefits or change an undesirable situation (disrespect, shame, loneliness, danger). The need is expressed in motivation, which, depending on the level of personal development, takes on a specific and definite form.

Primary needs include physiological needs, for example, procreation, the desire to drink water, breathe, etc. A person wants to protect himself and his loved ones from enemies, help them treat diseases, and protect them from poverty. The desire to get into a certain social group sends the researcher to another category - social needs. In addition to these aspirations, the individual feels a desire to be liked by others and demands respectful treatment.

Human needs are constantly changing; in the process of human evolution, motivation is gradually being revised. E. Engel's law states that the demand for low-quality food products decreases as income increases. At the same time, the demand for food products, which are required of increased quality while improving the standard of human life, is increasing.

general information

So, when talking about the natural needs of a person, it is necessary to pay attention to the biological ones. Or, as they also say, physiological. They are determined by the need to maintain normal life. These include healthy sleep, rest, food and water intake. This is necessary for normal metabolism. Such natural human needs are also called vital. This is from the Latin word vitalis - life-giving.

Physiological and psychological needs are also important. A person needs a feeling of security, as well as confidence that his homeostasis will be maintained. This is the ability of the individual and his body to overcome the resistance of the external environment.

A biological natural human need is the need for energy expenditure. Everything here is extremely simple. We eat to replenish our resources. You can compare it with the operating principle of a car. When its fuel tank is full, the car moves. It's the same with a person. To feel normal, he needs to move. Basic energy metabolism occurs constantly, even if a person lies in front of the TV. But normal daily activity is regular movement (going to work, going to the store, walking, etc.).


Are human activities caused by social needs? Needs are the source of a person’s activity, the motivation of his activities.

A person performs any action solely out of the desire to achieve a certain result. This result is the satisfaction of a need.

A person's actions can directly contribute to the fulfillment of a desire. For example: when in need of communication, a teenager goes out of the house to the street to friends sitting in the yard and enters into dialogue with them.

Otherwise, activity manifests itself in the performance of certain actions, which will subsequently lead to the satisfaction of a social need. For example, the desire for power can be achieved through purposeful activity in the professional sphere.

At the same time, people do not always take actions to satisfy the needs that they have.

Unlike biological needs, which cannot be ignored (thirst, hunger, etc.), a person can leave social needs unfulfilled.

Reasons: laziness, lack of initiative, lack of motivation, lack of determination, fear, etc.

For example, a person may feel a strong need for communication and at the same time constantly sit at home alone and have no friends. The reason for this behavior can be strong self-doubt and internal psychological conflicts.

As a result, the person will not take actions that he could take to achieve the desired result.

The lack of necessary activity will lead to unfulfillment of existing desires and a low quality of life, but there will be no threat to life.


A natural human need is the need to feel like a self-sufficient person. It is important for all of us to “find ourselves.” A person, realizing his potential, abilities and demonstrating knowledge, feels useful. When a person does what she likes and brings a certain result, harmony comes. A person ceases to feel like a useless and hopeless empty place. Following this, the need for recognition and praise is satisfied. Humans are characterized by healthy egoism and the need to be the center of attention at least sometimes. Everyone is familiar with this situation: at work, they praised the team for a certain achievement and gave them a bonus. Usually they say in such cases: “It’s a small thing, but it’s nice!” At this point, the social need for achievement and self-satisfaction is satisfied. So, high spirits and a smile on your face are a completely understandable phenomenon.


It also happens that a person’s natural organic needs develop into something without which he cannot imagine his existence. Take food, for example. The need for food is biological. We eat food to maintain metabolism, vitamin balance and energy supply. But there are people who eat constantly. There is nothing wrong with eating delicious food, delicacies, and enjoying it. But some people simply “eat up” everything that happens in their lives. Especially if it's something bad. Depression, for example. This is a destructive addiction. A person, starting to eat with each of his experiences, does not live it. And he avoids. This entails problems in the form of kidney disease, heart disease, liver disease or obesity.

Moreover, the object of destructive dependence often becomes any need in its extreme manifestation. We need sleep, but there are people who sleep 12 hours a day. We need communication, but some experience obvious codependency on other people (or on one person). Work is necessary for self-realization and ensuring material wealth, but there are workaholics. But at the heart of everything are natural human needs. The examples given above do not reflect everything that takes place. Destructive addiction is much more global. And all because many do not have a sense of proportion, which is so necessary for a person.

Some examples

In order to better understand what social needs are, you need to analyze them using examples. In social studies, this topic is studied in detail, as it will be useful in life.

In development

In fact, all human inventions appeared to satisfy a specific need: clothing, tools, dishes and much more. Someone sought to make a discovery in science in order to become famous.

In public order

An example is any politician who is interested in gaining public recognition. Another example is a volunteer, event organizer, or other active person. The peculiarity of this type of activity will be that it is aimed not at obtaining material benefits, but at helping people.

Entrepreneurship can also be useful to society. A simple example is that a store owner gives away a certain amount of goods to charity.

In altruism

Subconsciously, all people strive to do what is beneficial to them and protect themselves. It is difficult to give up this, but it is possible. Selfless help and self-sacrifice are examples of the realization of social needs. A person in them does not seek any benefit for himself; he does this out of a desire to gain public recognition.

With altruism, an individual sacrifices his own interests

Social needs are very important for a fulfilling life. In their absence, no one dies, but you won’t be able to enjoy what is happening.

Material component

This also applies to the natural needs of man. Each of us feels the need for decent conditions of existence. We all know people who shout, “Money isn’t everything!” They are wrong. Perhaps money is not the most important value for someone. But certainly one of the main ones.

Money is the only way to satisfy your basic needs. The only thing a person receives for free (from what is necessary for life) is oxygen. Everything else needs to be purchased. Food, shelter, water, furniture, clothing, medicine. So, as you can see, work is a way to satisfy not only the desire to realize yourself as a person. That’s why it’s so important to get a profession that you like. So that later, while working, you can satisfy yourself as an individual and earn money to ensure a decent existence.

Why do I even need to know about basic needs, and how will it help me?

Failure to satisfy basic needs leads to the maintenance and activation of maladaptive patterns that begin to control our behavior. Behavior dictated by the schema further interferes with the satisfaction of needs, negatively affects interpersonal relationships, and prevents acting in accordance with internal values. Awareness of basic needs is an important step towards conscious behavior aimed at living a harmonious, satisfying life.

Awareness of basic needs is an important step towards conscious behavior aimed at living a harmonious, satisfying life.

Differences in needs

Now the 21st century reigns in the yard. When human needs comprehensively develop and expand. Whoever says that all people are the same, this is not true. We are different. In terms of not basic, but expanded needs. A simple example: for people of average income, a simple, good-quality sedan in the garage is quite enough. Rich people are eager to buy the latest product from a famous concern for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Some people eat caviar once a week, while others eat it every other day. This is modern society. In which everyone lives as their wealth allows.

But, in essence, it all comes down to ways to satisfy needs. One person will eat buckwheat porridge with a cutlet, another will eat a marbled beef steak. But the result will be the same - both will be full. And the need to replenish the energy resources of both will be satisfied.


The influence of social needs should be considered from two sides: from the point of view of the individual and from the point of view of society as a whole.

Satisfying social needs helps a person feel complete, needed, increases self-esteem and self-confidence. The most important social needs are communication, love, friendship. They play a primary role in the development of an individual as a personality.

From the point of view of society, they are the engine of development of all spheres of life. A scientist, wanting recognition (satisfying a need “for himself”), invents a method of treating a serious illness that saves many lives and contributes to the development of science. An artist who dreams of becoming famous, in the process of satisfying his social needs, contributes to culture

There are many similar examples that can be cited, and all of them will confirm that satisfying the needs of an individual is as important for society as it is for the person himself.

Man is a social being and cannot develop harmoniously outside of it. The main social needs of an individual include: the need for communication, friendship, love, self-realization, recognition, power. The variety of social activities contributes to the development of the individual’s system of needs. Failure to meet social needs causes apathy and aggression. Social needs contribute not only to the improvement of the individual as a person, but are also the engine of development of society as a whole.

Supply and demand

This well-known phrase is very easy to apply to the topic under discussion. Today, the level of production activity determines how well it satisfies the needs of certain people. If the state has not produced the required amount of a particular good, then the needs of citizens are not adequately satisfied. Based on the level of wealth of society, it is also determined how much needs to be imported or produced. And understanding the role and place of the population’s needs is achieved through the interaction of needs and production. And nothing else.

The transition of production to a higher, better level affected the needs. While primitive people were content with a piece of raw meat barely roasted over an open fire, today we need a stove, oven or grill to make food suitable for consumption. And since one quickly gets used to good things, the rise in needs often outstrips production. Needless to say, even if workers at garment factories are trying to find out as quickly as possible what trends and new items have been developed in fashion houses.

Man in society

Social needs are also natural. But they, unlike biological ones, exist as a matter of course. And they do not encourage immediate satisfaction. How many days can a person live without water? The exact answer depends on the conditions, but in general – no more than 10 days. How long can a person live without communication? Some people have been alone for years.

But be that as it may, man is a social being, and he needs communication. And in general, you need to contact others. A person, having found a kindred spirit, a friend, a like-minded person, ceases to feel lonely. He has someone with whom to share emotions, joy, sadness, and receive support. Finding a “soul mate,” he feels needed and loved. And most importantly, the feeling that the world is empty disappears.

Spiritual aspirations

Spiritual interests develop in a person in connection with the desire to enrich life experience, broaden his horizons, and develop creative abilities.

The growth of personal potential forces an individual not only to be interested in the culture of humanity, but also to care about representing the values ​​of his own civilization. Spiritual aspirations presuppose an increase in psychological tension during emotional experiences, awareness of the value of the chosen ideological goal.

A person with spiritual interests improves his skills and strives for high results in the field of activity and creativity. An individual treats work not only as a means of enrichment, but learns his own personality through work. Spiritual, biological and social needs are closely intertwined. Unlike the animal world, in human society the primary need is for biological existence, but it gradually turns into a social one.

The nature of the human personality is multifaceted, hence the variety of types of needs. The manifestation of aspirations in various social and natural conditions makes their classification and division into groups difficult. Many researchers offer various distinctions, putting motivation at the forefront.


As mentioned earlier, movement is a natural need of the human body. But it is important to note one more nuance. Namely, moving forward towards goals and dreams as a self-sufficient person. There are many spiritual needs. And it’s quite difficult to define them, since they are different for us all. And they depend on your personal worldview. But the most important spiritual need of a person is the awareness of his existence. Everyone has at least once asked the question - what is the meaning of life? So, if a person has found the answer for himself, it means that he has satisfied the most important spiritual need.

How to achieve harmony?

But it happens that a question remains unanswered for a very long time. And it is quite difficult for a person without spiritual peace to interact with the world that surrounds him. As a rule, these are weak individuals who have difficulty surviving adversity and failure. But there are ways to satisfy spiritual needs and bring yourself to harmony. This could be communication with animals. Our little brothers raise even physically handicapped people to their feet. What can we say about spirituality? A person who approaches animals becomes a part of nature. By the way, privacy with her is also very important. Traveling to a quiet place with magnificent scenery and staying there for some time can bring anyone back to their senses. And give me some ideas. Moreover, in the lap of nature it is simply impossible to become despondent.


What are social needs? There are a large number of human social needs, which can be divided into three main groups:

  1. For myself. These are needs, the satisfaction of which allows a person to achieve the desired level of development and position in society. This includes the desire for self-development, leadership, career growth, power, recognition.
  2. For others. This type of needs differs from the previous one in that it contains no signs of egoistic aspirations. A person wants to take actions aimed at satisfying the interests of other people. These are the needs for mutual assistance, help, altruism.
  3. Together with others. Such needs unite people as equal members of society.
    A person experiencing these needs feels supported by other people with similar desires.

    This may include the desire for communication, peace, order, discipline, etc.

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