Needs vs. Wants

There’s a movie that I love to watch over and again that illustrates my “needs vs wants” struggle perfectly.


(Spoiler Alert if you haven’t watched it yet!)

Anna grew up with an unpredictable father who chased the next get rich quick scheme until finally one Christmas they lose their home.  Anna is still in high school and has to work two jobs to support them.  After much hard work she lands on her feet in Boston with a cardiologist (MONEY!!!) boyfriend that she very much wants to marry.  She’s been waiting four years for him to ask, and decides when he is on a business convention in Ireland to follow him there and take advantage of the Leap Year day tradition (women propose to men) to propose.  Of course she gets what she wants, but in the struggling she meets a man who can provide for her what she needs.  She doesn’t even know she needs this, but we do.  What she needs is to stop controlling everything in her life, let go, and have peace.

This brings us to my story.  Many times in my life I have struggled to control and fight for what I want, not knowing exactly what I need.  Looking back, I see that many of those struggles resulted not in what I wanted, but in precisely what I needed.

Let me explain.  Last year I really wanted a job, but when I got said job it wasn’t the exact one I wanted, but it was exactly what I needed.  What I wanted wouldn’t have provided the growth (both personal and professional) that I experienced this year.  Leaps and bounds folks!

Right now, once again I am faced with uncertainty and the unknown, which is when I really try to control, because I hate feeling in limbo.  However, what I’ve come to realize, and hopefully internalize, about the unknown is that there are many unknowns. That being said, it is virtually impossible to know with any certainty what outcome would be best in any situation.  How can I possibly know what’s best for me when I don’t even have an awareness of the possibilities?  (Probability)

I am only clearly aware at this exact moment of three possible outcomes for a job next year.  Ah, did I forget to mention, once again, I have lost my job.

Here are the possibilities (that I am aware of):
1. I get the new job I applied for.
2. I get placed in a job where I currently work.
3. I don’t get a job at all and just work day-to-day to keep my employment status.

Here’s what I’m left thinking. There are endless possibilities, many I’m not even aware of that could be just what I need.

You might be asking yourself, “Well what do you need?” I honestly don’t know for certain, but it feels like what I need is peace.

Let me leave you with these last thoughts.  I know that your needs are different from mine and somehow all of our needs work together.  If I could prove this mathematically, I certainly would.  Let me clarify, in case this doesn’t make sense to you.  Every moment of our lives and every movement of our lives are connected.  Humans fit together like pieces of a puzzle sitting on a table waiting for completion.  What a beautiful picture we make when we are complete.

What do you need in your life?