I’ve had many conversations with my children regarding want vs need.
They want a new video game, but they need food.
They want to go to the park, but they need clothing.
They want to watch t.v., but they need shelter.
Adults are guilty of confusing wants with needs as well.
Prime example . . . Many years ago, hubby and I left Washington and moved back to our home state of Illinois. Before leaving Washington, we decided to purchase some property so we could build our own house (with the help of a contractor). We spent weeks looking for the perfect house plan and decided that we “needed” a large house. After all, our children were getting older and would need plenty of space when their friends came to visit. We also needed space when company came to visit. So that is what we did. We built a 3700 sq. ft home on 1/4 acre piece of land. It was more house than we needed, but confusing want with need meant we had a big house which meant we had more cleaning, more upkeep and space that rarely got used.
OMG! How did our ancestors ever survive living in one room cabins?
When we moved to Texas, we downsized but needed a pool. After all, it gets hot here in Texas.
Now we have a smaller house with a pool that we use often, but we have maintenance and repairs and expenses each month that we wouldn’t have if we had chosen a house without a pool. In addition, we paid more to get the house with the pool.
These thoughts were triggered by something I heard recently and while I thought the adult was confusing want with need, it made me realize that I regularly do the same thing.
There are many things I want.
I want to take annual cruises.
I want the bigger house.
I want the bigger car.
I want to see the world.
I want more money.
Okay, the last one might fit in both the wants and needs category depending on the situation.
We live in the U.S. where the mentality of more is better took over many years ago and letting go of that mentality can be difficult. However, it’s something I have to work on every day because my children are watching and they won’t listen if I’m not also setting the example of practicing what I preach.