Needs vs Wants

Often when we communicate, we express ourselves with ‘needs’ when they are truly ‘wants’. For example: “I need my coffee in the morning or I cannot function”. However, when breaking it down, the coffee is a want, the need may be to feel the warmth and connection to self.

photo of water droplet pink background - needs vs wants - passion within coaching

Why does it matter – need vs want?

Does it really matter how we express or evaluate our needs and wants? The answer is yes! The reason behind this is simple.

When we truly understand our core needs vs wants, not only are we able to prioritize our tasks in life to ensure the core functions are being met, but we can then communicate effectively to others in life when a core need must be met, or if it’s a want or desire that we are looking for.

photo of pink rose with water droplet - needs vs wants - passion within coaching

What is a need?

A need is something in life that is required for our mental, physical, emotional or energetic self to be sustained. In its simplicity, water is a core need. Sparkling water would be a want.

As noted, to sustain out mental, emotional and energetic self, there are needs which we often don’t put a tangible value on.

For instance, the need for connection may include:

  • Belonging
  • Communication
  • Nurturing
  • Safety
  • Trust

These needs often come up, when someone is in a vulnerable situation or not feeling safe and secure. However, at the same time, without knowing some of the language behind it, we relate to each other telling people we feel uneasy or insecure.

Learning about the core needs will help you to not only express to others but pinpoint challenges that others may be expressing to you. When these layers are then uncovered, the ability to meet either your needs, or the needs of someone else will be much easier.

When working with clients, I like to use this list of needs.

photo of pink flowers - needs vs wants - passion within coaching

What is a want?

I think this one is much easier to relate to and understand. It’s everything that is not a need. 🙂

Within our everyday life, most of the actions and desires we have are wants. When you’re looking at setting goals, prioritizing your time and learning to set action items, understanding your wants are key. These may be goals you want to achieve, places you want to visit or even the everyday activities and things you have in your life.

I invite you to spend some time thinking about your core needs vs. wants and how these intermingle and affect your everyday life and the people around you. Also notice, if you have young children around, observe how they are asking for their needs to be met.

“You cannot always have what you want. Sometimes you get what you need.” – Linda Berdoll

quote graphic - you cannot always have you want want. Sometimes you get what you need.

Are you interested in learning how to Live Your Passionate Life? Contact me for your free 40-minute consultation session and we'll take a look at where you currently are in your life, chat about your short and long terms goals, and see where the best place is to start elevating your life. 

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Meet Cheryl McDonald

Life & Business Coach based in Calgary, Alberta

Think of me as your guide. I support people just like you to reclaim your busy life, optimize your business and in the process rediscover where 'you' went. We work together to help find the amazing person inside; the joys of who you are; and the things you love (and want) to do. All while still keeping the balance, support and self-care for yourself and family.

As a Life and Business Coach, I work with you to: look at the areas in your life that you want to change; learn tools and strategies to meet these goals; and support you to chart and navigate your path of changes.

I'm located in the beautiful city of Calgary, Alberta, Canada and work with my clients virtually through Zoom (web video conferencing).

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