How often do you stop and think about what you want? I mean, what you really want. Further, how often do you stop and ask yourself if your actions are aligned with what you say you want? Could it be that we really don’t know the answer to that?
There’s a movie (I don’t remember the name except that it stars Reese Witherspoon) and in one scene she meets with a therapist. She tells him she doesn’t know why she’s there, as she doesn’t believe in “therapy” – nonetheless she’s there. After a long period of silence, she says that since she really doesn’t even know what brought her to his office, she will just ask one question, “What is the single best advice you could give that applies to anyone, at any age, in any circumstance?” A gentle smile comes over the therapist as he calmly says, “That’s easy. Figure out what you want in life, and learn how to ask for it.”
I think part of the reason we don’t come right out and ask for what we want more often, is not our fear of being turned down…rather our fear that we may get it – only to realize, it’s not really what we needed in the first place. This conundrum takes us to another question entirely….
How do YOU figure out the difference between what you want versus what you need?
Certainly there’s the obvious, “I want a piece of cake, but I need to lose weight.” I’m talking about questions much more difficult…like, “Is this the person who I want to be in a relationship with, or is this the person that I really need?” Here’s an indicator if you are struggling in knowing the difference; what you want, is NOT a recurring nagging thought – what you need…is. What you want is easy – effortless. The reason is because it’s familiar and it’s what you’ve probably always had. However, what you need will push you, will make you uncomfortable… it’s the very thing you need in order to make you grow. These can be friends, romantic relationships and even careers.
I will ask this again, what do you want? More importantly, how sure are you? Sometimes being taken out of our comfort zone is exactly what we need. If there is someone or something that makes you uncomfortable, yet you think about it… a lot, you should probably pay attention to that. I can tell you, there was a pivotal point, several years ago, that literally changed the direction of my life. Of all things, it was when I left the Fire Department. I somehow tripped across Sundoor Firewalking School. I could not get this place out of my mind. It made NO sense. Why would anyone want to go there? I spent years putting out fires, why would anyone intentionally walk across fire- barefoot? This experience literally changed the course of my life. It was… what I needed.
Pay attention to the things, the people and the circumstances that you can’t stop thinking about. It…they… may be just what you need.
With hot flaming gratitude,