Self-esteem needs are the fourth priority following physiologic, safety and security, and love and belonging. An individual is unable to reach higher priorities until the lower needs are achieved. Self-esteem is considered the second of the higher-level needs in Maslow's hierarchy, after love and belonging. Maslow divided self-esteem into two sections, the first being esteem for oneself, and the second being the aspiration for reputation or respect from others. When writing nursing exams, remember that esteem patient needs are prioritized fourth.
The first of the two self-esteem levels is esteem for oneself, which includes dignity, success, and independence. It involves the need for a person to feel good about themselves and have a sense of accomplishment. Factors that can affect one’s esteem include changes that result from body image change (e.g. injury, illness, surgery, weight gain).
The second level of self-esteem is the aspiration for reputation or respect from others. It involves the need for others to respect and appreciate their accomplishments.
Nurses can facilitate feelings of confidence, independence, and self-worth by valuing their beliefs, respecting their values, supporting the patient to establish attainable goals.
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