In the current economy, and with the increased interest in frugality and thrift, we’ve heard time and time again about needs vs. wants. We’ve heard over and over to focus on our needs, not our wants, that “wants” are frivolous, they’re excessive, they’re going to put you in the poorhouse. Everyone asks, “What do I really need?”
Of all the forces around us, whether environmental, physical, emotional, or mental, perhaps the most powerful is the language we speak to ourselves. What we think and say to and about ourselves can have a far greater impact on our own success than just about anything. That’s why it becomes important to focus on what you really want rather than what you need and to change the way you think about needs and wants.
A “needs” focus will keep you from success
How? Needs are the language of obligation. I need, I must, I should, I have to …
- I “need” to pay the mortgage (so I don’t lose my home and die of exposure).
- I “must” keep THIS job (it’s unfulfilling, yes, but I’ll put up with anything to keep food on the table).
- I “have to” go to this meeting (even though I have much more pressing obligations).
- I “gotta” pay my credit card bill (despite not knowing where the money will come from).
- I “need” a job (so I’ll take anything, do anything, compromise my dreams, and live in constant desperation).
- I “need” to create a budget (so I just throw something together without thinking it through).
- I “really should” get my emergency fund in place (but I don’t know how I’ll fund it).
- I “need” to [fill in your own blank].
A “needs” focus doesn’t fulfill, doesn’t motivate, doesn’t help you develop self discipline, and doesn’t propel you toward anything resembling success. “Needing” to ace an interview is a sure way to botch it. No one wants to hire a needy interviewee.