Four Ways to Meet Your Needs

Photo by David Alberto Carmona Coto on

I read Dr Rick Hanson’s book, Resilient, a few months ago and I occasionally browse it for personal motivation. Recently I found myself drawing more from his book especially during stressful times. According to Dr. Hanson, we have three basic needs (safety, satisfaction, connection) and we meet these needs in 4 ways (which I’ll call the 4 Rs):

  • recognizing what’s true (using mindfulness, compassion, and learning)
  • resourcing ourselves (through grit, gratitude, and confidence)
  • regulating our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors (with calm, motivation, intimacy)
  • relating skillfully in interactions with others and our community (through courage, aspiration, generosity)

Here are some reflection prompts for each of the 4 Rs to help you engage in deeper processing around each way you can meet your safety, satisfaction, and connection needs.

Recognizing what’s true:

  • how can you use a mindfulness practice to be more aware of your surroundings and needs?
  • how can you practice self-compassion during times of suffering or difficulty?
  • what new information can you learn to enrich your life and experiences?

Resourcing ourselves

  • how can you improve your sense of agency to refuel grit and improve life satisfaction?
  • how can you use gratitude as a way to improve the connection you have with yourself and others?
  • how can confidence help you to feel secure and safe in your sense of being?

Regulating our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors

  • what are some accessible and realistic calming practices you can implement throughout your day to increase emotional safety?
  • make a list of your sources of motivation and how motivation is related to life satisfaction
  • what is the connection between intimacy and connection in your life?

Relating skillfully in interactions with others and our community

  • how can you use courage to build healthy and meaningful connections with others?
  • what aspirations do you have around life satisfaction?
  • how can you practice safety when being generous?

Keep a journal to document how you are meeting your needs and how the quality of your needs may change over time.

~ Karisse C

One thought on “Four Ways to Meet Your Needs

  1. The reflection questions you created on these 4 R’s are excellent and journaling really helps me to be in tune with myself. Thanks for sharing this Karisse!

    Liked by 1 person

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