For the man who is extremely and dangerously hungry, no other interests exist but food. He dreams food, he remembers food, he thinks about food, he emotes only about food, he perceives only food and he wants only food.
Another indication of the child’s need for safety is his preference for some kind of undisrupted routine or rhythm. He seems to want a predictable, orderly world. For instance, injustice, unfairness, or inconsistency in the parents seems to make a child feel anxious and unsafe. This attitude may be not so much because of the injustice per se or any particular pains involved, but rather because this treatment threatens to make the world look unreliable, or unsafe, or unpredictable.
The more insecure the individual becomes, the greater becomes his hunger for security and, with this, the more fantastic and unreal and unattainable his conception of security becomes. He tends to overinflate the goals and the demands until eventually he makes them in reality impossible of achievement. Thus the extremely insecure person becomes less and less content in his fantasies and dreams with the modest demands that he dares in reality to make upon the world.
It is a characteristic of the human being throughout his whole life that he is practically always desiring something.
We should never have the desire to compose music or create mathematical systems, or to adorn our homes, or to be well dressed if our stomachs were empty most of the time, or if we were continually dying of thirst, or if we were continually threatened by an always impending catastrophe, or if everyone hated us.
Young children seem to thrive better under a system which has at least a skeletal outline of rigidity, in which there is a schedule of a kind, some sort of routine, something that can be counted upon, not only for the present but also far into the future. Perhaps one could express this more accurately by saying that the child needs an organized world rather than an unorganized or unstructured one.
The insecure person, then, perceives the world as a threatening jungle and most human beings as dangerous and selfish; feels rejected and isolated, anxious and hostile; is generally pessimistic and unhappy; shows signs of tension and conflict; tends to turn inward; is troubled by guilt-feelings; has one or another disturbance of self-esteem; tends to be or actually is neurotic; and is generally egocentric or selfish.
In every insecure person with whom the writer has worked he has always found a continual, never dying longing for security. Sometimes this has been conscious, sometimes unconscious and unrecognized by the subject. Furthermore, there were found wide variations in the subjects’ individual definitions of the security that they longed for.
Human needs arrange themselves in hierarchies of pre-potency. That is to say, the appearance of one need usually rests on the prior satisfaction of another, more pre-potent need. Man is a perpetually wanting animal. Also no need or drive can be treated as if it were isolated or discrete; every drive is related to the state of satisfaction or dissatisfaction of other drives.
Man is a wanting animal and rarely reaches a state of complete satisfaction except for a short time. As one desire is satisfied, another one pops up to take its place. When this is satisfied, still another comes into the foreground…