Learning how to better understand the difference between the things you want, against the things you need, is one of the most effective ways to gain clarity and improve the balance in your life. A need is something you can’t do without, such as food or water. A want is something you would like to have, it’s a choice or a desire.
It’s easy to get caught up in the thought that we always need more of something. Take a moment and really think about it. Do you need it or do you just want it?
I use a ‘stop & check mindset’ for most things in my life. For example, if I am thinking of buying something, I ask myself, do I need it or do I just want it? Of course, there are many times when I buy something I want and don’t need! However, I have found this mindset really useful, in other aspects of my life. Do I really need that second bar of chocolate? What do I need to be physically and mentally healthy?
Having a quality control check in my mind, has made me much more productive in my personal & professional life. I am also aware that my wants and needs will be tested, every single day. I have found that being solely grateful for the things that I have around me, gives me better balance and happiness inside. Focusing on the things that I do have, instead of the things I don’t, brings me an inner calm that is wrapped up with a lovely level of spiritual contentment. It also allows me to focus on the more important aspects of what life has to offer. For me this is love, friendships and interests.
Try this exercise:
We all may have some of the same needs, but our wants will be different. Try writing down a list of around 8 – 12 things, that you really need in your life. Then write a list of the things you really want in your life. Analyse both in detail and drop at least a quarter of the less important stuff, on both lists. This exercise helped me become more conscious of the things that I should really be concerned with. It also helped me focus on the things that are in my control, rather than thinking about the things that aren’t.
This might seem like very simple straightforward logic. However, many of us get dragged down by the fact that we can’t have more of the things we want, rather than the things we need.
Life will continue if you don’t get what you want, it may just take a different path. Let’s face it, life is meant to be lived not survived, so focus on the needs/wants that are a priority, to you.
Make the Change!