Needs vs Wants

From a young age, we are told to express what we want, say how we feel, if you want something you need to ask for it, and that we can have or be anything we want in life. We now live in a world where everything we want is within our reach, or at a touch of a button. Do you see a common theme here?

We have grown up in a world of instant gratification. Advancement in technology and society as a whole has influenced our expectations. We are spoilt in that food is delivered right to our door, machines wash our clothes, ovens clean themselves, and cars can even self-park. We expect more for less, and we don’t have to work as hard to get what we want.

Somewhere along the way, our definitions of need and want became blurred. And I believe a common roadblock for someone trying to reach a goal they have for themselves is failing to distinguish the difference between what they need and what they want. 

Let me take you back to the basics:

  • A need is something you require because it is essential or very important.
  • A want is a desire to possess or do something you wish for.

As simple as this sounds, it can be far more challenging to ignore your immediate desires and execute self-control, especially when temptations are close by.

I’ll admit, so many times in life I would much rather eat a cheeseburger or an entire pizza for dinner, but in order to reach the goals I have set for myself, I need to eat the healthy, nutritious meal I have prepped and planned for myself*. I want to sleep in every morning, but to feel good about myself and prepare my body for what life throws at me, I need to get up early and train before work.

The easy route is to give into these temptations as soon as they appear, but the easy route is not always the best choice. The truth is that good things take time, and good things come to those who work hard for it. Sometimes we must make sacrifices to reach our goals.

Whether that goal is to hit a new PB in the gym, drop body fat, or just feel comfortable in your own skin, it always comes down to the question of how bad do you really want it?

That’s the difference between someone who ‘tries’ and someone who ‘commits’. They are disciplined. They have a goal in mind, and they know what they need to do in order to reach that goal.

Next time you find yourself struggling to take a hold of your nutrition, or you snooze your alarm until it’s too late, ask yourself what is more important? To satisfy that craving, or immediate want and desire or to make a choice that is going to contribute to achieving that long-term goal. 

Photo cred: @teeganlianne

We live in a world full of temptations, but at the end of the day, sometimes you have to make sacrifices and ask yourself is it really worth it?

*Note: I too struggle with this concept.  And sometimes I don’t follow my own advice because I also ate an entire pizza and cupcake (or two) while editing this… It’s called balance 😉  


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