At the FILEX convention a couple of weeks ago I was fortunate enough to attend a lecture by John Polley (http://www.befreemlw.com.au/our-people.php), a PTA Master Trainer and owner of Be Free Movement Lifestyle and Wellness. It was a fabulous lecture and it touched upon something that I was not familiar with up until that evening. I’m sure you have heard of Tony Robbins – the loud American guy with the enormous head. It turns out that whilst Tony is a loud American with an enormous head he is also quite a smart guy. I know that because John Polley told me… but I digress.
Tony, and a couple of colleagues, believe that there are 6 core motivations that human beings need to fulfil if they are to achieve happiness and fulfilment. Tony and colleagues have based this belief on the decades of work that they have done with people all over the world – apparently now over 3 million people. I found this position fascinating and began to think about how we can fulfil these 6 core needs and how exercise and health can help. Because that is what I am – an exercise and health guy.
The 6 needs are not necessarily desires or wants, they are unconscious needs that we strive for whether we know it or not. The 6 needs are the factors that influence our emotions and play a large role in determining how you will prioritize your decisions and actions right throughout your life. Please view the image below for an overview of the 6 Human Needs.
The scope of my blogs doesn’t allow me to enter into too much detail – I know that I’m lucky to hold your attention for 6 minutes – but below is an outline of the 6 needs.
- Certainty: Here you are striving to experience comfort and gain certainty in your life in order to minimize the stress of uncertainty.
- Uncertainty: Here you are striving for a little variety and uncertainty in your life in order to relieve boredom, predictability and stagnation.
- Significance: Here you are striving to gain a sense of significance and importance in the eyes of others. Your objective is to create a sense of identity.
- Connection: Here you are striving to make deep connections with people. You have a need to love and be loved by others. You also have a need to belong.
- Growth: Here you are striving to learn, experience and grow mentally, emotionally and spiritually in a variety of ways throughout your life.
- Contribution: Here you are striving to contribute to something greater than yourself. This is all about adding value to other people’s lives.
If this resonates with you than you must be wondering how does exercise, food, fitness and health fit in and how can you apply them to your health routine?
Exercise can absolutely provide you with certainty. When all else is falling down around you it is ultimately only yourself that can stop you from exercising. When you are in a routine of exercise it can be one of the most certain things in your life.
Uncertainty and variety are interchangeable terms, recall. So to provide uncertainty or, more specifically, variety, to your health and fitness regime you would simply need to vary your training and diet regularly. Even altering the way that you relax and recuperate from training can count.
Does your training regime make you feel significant in the eyes of others? In your own eyes? Have you ever stopped to think about what that compliment that you received yesterday actually represented in the eyes of the person that delivered it to you? If you pay attention to the people in your circle you will find that your significance is immense because you are doing something that only 9% of the population has the ability to do – exercise regularly and take care of yourself.
You will feel connection in multiple ways from exercising, eating well improving your health, however perhaps you just haven’t noticed it. Consider the people that have become friends in the gym, the group that you are a part of on social media, the group of people that you do Boot Camp with, your running group, training partner or even your Personal Trainer or Health Coach. The number of ways that exercise helps to foster your innate desire for connection are almost innumerable.
The 5th need isn’t about growing your biceps – though it could be, I suppose… The manner in which your exercise, health and fitness regime inspire growth within you will stem from the challenges of maintaining a regime that often times calls for extreme dedication in the face of life’s various obstacles. You will learn about your strengths and weaknesses as a person when the option to throw away months, or even years, of hard work presents itself but you choose to fight through it because your health, physically, physiologically and psychologically is just that important to you.
The 6th need is an easy one to apply to exercise and health. Consider the inspiration that you deliver to the people around you, the tips that you have offered, the help that you have given and support that you have provided to someone that just didn’t know where to start. It has happened to every single one of you, though it is likely that you haven’t realized it. But be mindful that you are contributing to the lives of the people around you just by leading by example and showing the people important to you just how if little old you can do it that surely they can too. This is one of the most powerful needs relating to health and exercise and it happens all of the time.
So maybe you believe in this stuff, maybe you think it’s all a bit daft. Perhaps you are on the fence. All I know is that if it is true and real that exercise, diet and lifestyle will help you to fulfil and satisfy every one of your 6 core needs.
Yours in Health.