Need Response Orientations

 

The word homeostasis is of relatively recent origin. It was coined by Walter Bradford Cannon in 1926. Cannon based it upon Claude Bernard's earlier milieu intérieur. The concept itself has ancient roots in Greek thinking.

 

It also has deep roots in the way Native Americans traditionally viewed the world. They appreciated life as interdependent between their internal and external environments, including the ultimate environments of Mother Earth and Father Sky.

 

This site taps into my own Native American paradigm using the wellness wheel, or sacred circle diagram, to illustrate what is now called homeostasis. The wellness wheel helps to illustrate how our self-regulating interior environments (e.g., temperature level, fluid level) is kept in balance with its exterior environments.

 

In this opening paradigm of indigentology, everything we can label as need relates back to this homeostatic process. In a closed system, the need remains internal. For example, maintaining an optimal blood pulse does not require some specific external item.

 

When we think of needs we are typically looking at open systems, in which we need something outside of ourselves to restore something of balance inside ourselves. For example, how we intake water that is outside of ourselves to restore our body's optimal fluid balance.

 

As used here, homeostasis is understood as having an optimal zone (in green), a safe zone (in yellow), and a danger zone (in red). Internal systems remaining largely within the green zone does not call much of our attention.

 

We attend to them automatically, as if on autopilot, as when the resource is abundant. When was the last time you worried about quenching your thirst, or recall using the restroom?

 
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Once we find a workable routine to ease our need experience we tend to stick to it. We each tend to develop a specific orientation in the way we respond to anticipated needs.

 

The routine can shift between a focus on need-resolve and strain-relief, between restoring balance in our root need or simply providing a break from constant discomfort or unfilled desired. Indeed, we are creatures of habit for good reason. It works.

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solving problems by resolving needs
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