On needs

Oh, think twice
It’s just another day for you
You and me in paradise
~Phil Collins, “Another Day in Paradise”

“I need a new hoodie.”
“I can’t be without a car in this town.”
“I have to make at least $24,000 a year.”

Again, I repeat myself. You don’t “need” anything but clean air, clean water, good food, and protection from the elements. According to Maslow, it builds from there, but I don’t see anything on there that says you will die if you don’t have a car and your own bathroom.

Our “needs” have gotten out of control. We NEED this. We HAVE TO HAVE that.

We don’t NEED shit (although we NEED to shit) but it can be difficult to remember (the former, not the latter). Even if we ourselves don’t have these things, we’re still surrounded by possessions and big houses and nice cars and food galore. But when you realize and accept that you don’t NEED any of it, you just might find yourself less stressed and a little bit happier.

We need to remember to sit back, calm down, and not freak out. We’re not going to die if we don’t fulfill that NEED right now. Hyping things up is only going to hurt in the end. And it’s not just possessions. It’s housing. It’s obligations. It’s work.

Owning nothing will not kill you. Being jobless will not kill you. Lacking central air and heat will not kill you. “Those examples are a little extreme, Fox.” No they aren’t. You may not WANT to live that way, but that doesn’t mean you CAN’T. You are not physically that much different from a Sadhu or a guy living in a cave. People, young and old, have been living without cars, permanent housing, central air/heat, and hula hoops for thousands of years.

Stop saying “I need” or “I have to have” and starting facing up to the fact that you WANT these things. And that’s all there is to it. You may dress it up and say shit like “I don’t sleep very well without air conditioning so I turn it on at night.” But ultimately, it’s just an excuse. (Mine, actually.)

Let go. If you want it, and don’t have it, relax. You can live without until it comes into your life.

For the third time:
Clean air
Clean water
Good food
Protection from the elements

If you have that, you have what you NEED. Don’t let yourself get hung up about what you don’t have and instead be grateful for what you do have.

Because it’s just another day in paradise.

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