Theories of Motivation

There are many theories of motivation, each with something to offer. Biological theories center on instinct. For example, should you step on a sharp  rock while walking in bare feet, you pick your foot back up and quickly! Behavior isn’t always that simple though. You aren’t taking this course out of instinct, so something else must be motivating your behavior. Abraham Maslow felt individuals behaved in ways to satisfy needs. His theory centered on a “Hierarchy of Needs” in which basic needs like food and water had to be met before “higher” needs like esteem and approval of others.

Questions:
1) Maslow’s theory seems to fit for much of behavior, but what about people who go on hunger strikes to meet higher order needs or who risk their own safety to protect their children?

2) Describe the person in your family who has the highest achievement motivation. How do you think he or she got this way? 

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