Stages of Psychological Development

Up to the point in time where we reach physical maturity, around 20 years-of-age, we all follow the same natural path of psychological development—surviving, conforming and differentiating.

During these stages of psychological development, we learn to satisfy what Abraham Maslow referred to as our basic or “deficiency” needs: We get anxious if these needs are not met, but once they are met, we no longer pay any attention to them. From the mid-twenties onwards, we move into the adult stages of psychological development—individuating, self-actualizing, integrating and serving.

During these stages of psychological development, we learn to satisfy what Abraham Maslow referred to as our “growth” needs. Once we experience the meaning and joy that mastering our growth needs brings, we want to experience them more. 

The following diagram describes the Seven Stages of Psychological Development.  To learn more about the Stages of Psychological Development, please read the full article.