By the time a person reaches young adulthood, around 20 years of age to around 40, they have a solid grasp on their physiological needs and how to fill them. They recognize the importance that food, water, shelter and clean air play in their lives. One need that is not only for the individual, but for the human race as a whole, is the need to reproduce. This is a physiological need because without reproduction, the human race would die off. Notice that I am not saying "sex", which is how it was originally described. Sex is the means to facilitate reproduction but, as humans we don't need sex to live. For this application I am not talking about recreational sex, rather I am referring to sex as a way to reproduce. This picture shows a young couple that has recently done there part to fill societies need for reproduction. Thinking about sex in this context helps us see why it is a physiological need.
As a young adult, the need for steady employment becomes more apparent. Financial security is a safety need and anythings that will help you become financially secure would also be a safety need. Having a savings account, health insurance, and a financial cushion become important when talking about safety needs. This image shows the unique step one man took in an attempt to gain employment. He paid $300 to put his face on a billboard, that said, "Hire Me".. The tactic worked and he was hired as a sales and marketing associate at a local business.
Belonging and Love Needs
Young adulthood is the time most people start a family by getting married. With physiological and safety needs met, most young adults start to feel the need of companionship and love. For some, once they find their spouse, having children becomes a need or priority. This picture shows a young adult couple that were recently wed in Mexico. Weddings are a time of gathering with family and friends for most people. Filling this need or not filling it can have a significant effect on the rest of a persons life.
Whether it is from work, your family, friends, or the public, people need and want recognition. Recognition is one way we meet our esteem needs. This recognition can come in many forms.. From something big. like a medal from the government, to something as simple as a smile from a loved one, it is nice to know your efforts are being recognized. The two men in this picture are being recognized by the Governor of Virginia in the form of a plaque. They were the first on scene at an accident where they pulled the driver out of a vehicle just before it caught fire. Their acts save the victims life.
Self-actualization in young adulthood is by no means mandatory. Some young adults do seem to get closer to filling that need, while others don't. Developmental Psychologist Schaie suggests young adults are still in the "achieving stage", meaning that they are still trying to sort out other issues in their lives which usually take precedence over self-actualization. This image shows a young adult that, it would seem, knows exactly who he is. Some people express who they are through tattoo's or other forms of skin art. While this does represent a good view as to their expressiveness,knowing your complete worth, capabilities, and desires is much deeper than just expressing yourself through body art.