Being Needy! Or Is It Just Being Wanty!

Times-Colonist September 13, 2012

I know just what this kid is feeling. I think most of us do. We usually know what we want but do we know what we need? It is one the biggest philosophical questions you will ever ask yourself. Moms think they know what we need. I know I believe I know what my husband and daughters need. But…they are grown-ups (in theory) and can make their own decisions about their wants and needs.

I want a lot of things and they sure feel like needs to me. I want a Kit Kit Chunky. I want to be slim already. I want an oceanside home. I want my children to be happy. I want to be famous (and rich would be nice). I want to be happy, too. I know people who want stuff. And they want money, lots of money. I’ve evolved a little bit because I KNOW money doesn’t buy happiness but it sure helps. But I’ll go along with Maslow’s Hierarchy of NeedsIt doesn’t say the “Hierarchy of Wants”!

When I get a thought of needing something. I think of it like fighting the crave monster. I can talk to it. I once needed a Porsche. Well actually I needed a car so I might as well think big, right? But then I had to ask myself, “Why a Porsche?” Well, I needed to get to work then all over our school district during work. OK, I needed transportation that I could use to go when and where I wanted. Any car would do, right? Hell, no! Why? I wanted to feel powerful, safe, unique, and noticed. I had “wants” more than just “needs”. By asking the “WHY?” I figured out what car to get.  It was unique, had a powerful engine and could lay rubber, and it still turns heads. Yep, I bought it almost 20 years ago and I still have it. It was the first car I ever bought with my own money and it is a ’66 Barracuda. Now, I have my mid-life adjustment car – my Mitsubishi Eclipse (yes, it is filling needs and wants). You can see the similarities (I have a thing for fastback models.) It’s more reliable for everyday transportation and…. I have an inherent “need” to be noticed. It is part of building my self-esteem and confidence. See Maslow above!



Asking “Why?” when you think you need something gets to the real reason you want what you want. I am way more wanty than needy. In Maslow’s diagram you don’t see: caviar, diamonds, new shoes, an ocean view etc. You see other “things” like sleep, shelter, love, achievement and success. These are things we need. How to get these things is what we want. and we need to ask the “why” question.

I want money. Why? To be secure…to eat…to keep a roof over my head…to travel? Some of those are needs and some are wants. By asking I can prioritize and decide what I will be satisfied with and what will get me what I need. Travel – why? To expand my experience and knowledge of the world with my husband. Expanding my experience and knowledge is a need to me. If I don’t do it I will stagnate and that is not acceptable. I could get this from National Geographic but that’s a wee bit arm’s length for me. But, it may be all I need for now. Maybe it’s the dreaming I need for my imagination to keep my brain on it’s feet.

I made zucchini muffins this morning. Why? I needed to use up the zucchini in my fridge. Why? If it turned mouldy and I had to throw it out it would be a waste and I don’t need the bad feeling of wasting something that we grew in our own garden.

My brain is beginning to run all over with the wants and needs concepts and the comparison with wanting food and the real need to be nourished! I need to lose weight. Why? To get healthier; to avoid diabetes, to grow older gracefully, to stop wear and tear on my poor joints etc. It is a need. So..I’ve come back to what my needs are and why I see myself as “WANTY”. I’m going to put a couple of few stickies around the house with “WHY?” on them. Maybe that will help keep me on the diet track and life track, too.

Next time I’ll compare wants and needs with my Medicine Wheel.

~ by 1fatgirlshrinking - Diane Kirby on September 14, 2012.

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