3. Maslow 1 - Basic Human Needs
Maslow's Order of Basic Human Needs is a motivational theory in psychology comprising a five tier model of human needs, often depicted as hierarchical levels within a pyramid. The foundational level, Physiological Needs, includes survival needs and deals with our need for food, water and sleep to survive and reproduce. If unmet, the human body struggles to function and all other needs become secondary until these needs are reasonably met.
Boundaries are essential to establishing good routines and sleep patterns. It is advisable to take some time to create boundaries around the type of food we will generally eat. How often will we allow 'sometimes' foods or 'treats'? What are our preferred meal times? Which drinks will we consume? When and how often will we use 'sometimes' drinks? What are our own sleep times? Our children's sleep times and routines? Involve the whole family in these discussions so everyone is on the same page.
Boundaries are an essential part of helping us and a child feel safe and cared for. Boundaries establish guidelines which assist a child to learn how to care for and to protect themselves. When working to set boundaries, start young and begin with something small and simple. Establishing boundaries early in life and continuing to set them as children grow means that during the teenage years, we can still have input and a great relationship with our children.
When setting boundaries, expect push-back for up to 6 weeks while a habit or pattern is being established. Persevere! It is so worth it! Boundaries concerning food, water and sleep will protect both the child's and the parent's health, as well as building their mental and emotional resilience. Together, we can elicit generational change by spreading the word that small changes to our hydration, nutrition, sleep habits and sugar consumption can radically improve our brain health, and build mental and emotional resilience. Ensuring that the Maslow's Basement needs are met builds resilience and immunity.
"Because Food, Water and Sleep form the base of the triangle; it stands to reason that if these critical supports are lost, the whole system collapses.
This was particularly true for me. After working for 8 months, 7 days a week, from 8am to 1am the next morning and living on junk food, coke and coffee, needing alcohol to get to sleep; my thinking was distorted, behaviour erratic and moods unpredictable.
The result was a complete mental and emotional breakdown, leading to psychiatric care, family breakdown and the end of my career. All of my physical resources were expended, my brain was dehydrated and unable to function correctly due to the ongoing lack of sleep.
Fortunately, once the physical supports are firmly re-established a process of mental, emotional and intellectual growth can begin again. Life can be rebuilt on a much firmer foundation, often with revised objectives"