Needs and Wants

June 25, 2007

Woman Placing Coins into Her Change PurseI can remember back when I was working in the corporate world. If I took a new job and my income increased, so would my spending. Suddenly more and more things I thought I needed would materialize and so would the debts.

When I thought about going out on my own, all I could think about were the debts I had to pay off. How would I do that if my income were reduced? I told myself I deserved to have whatever I wanted because I worked hard for it. Yet, what I really wanted was to work for myself, and my actions were not supporting that desire.

Finally I was able to pay off my debts, put money away and leave my regular job for a contracting assignment. When that assignment ended, I went freelance.

On My Own

After a couple of years of working for myself,  my mindset was still where it was when I was working in a corporate job and getting a regular check.

Instead of focusing on my long range goals of building my business, I gave in to short-term wants. I bought clothing and rationalized that I needed outfits to wear to business functions — even though I already had a full wardrobe of business clothes.

I continued the same behavior, not fully accepting that I was not living the same life I had been. Physically I was in my own business, mentally I was still an employee spending my money as though the next check was a certainty.

My mindset hadn’t caught up to my new life, but a look at the bank balance and the credit card balance helped to wake me up.

Real Needs, Real Wants

My real needs can’t be filled by going shopping. Not that there’s anything wrong with shopping. But I no longer have to engage in mindless buying to distract me from my career and life frustrations.

Building the life I want to live means being present and awake. It means making choices that support my true wants. Moment by moment, day by day.

Buying lots of stuff I don’t need isn’t fulfilling, using that money to follow my dream build my business is.

Copyright © 2008 -2014  Deborah A. Bailey

Deborah A Bailey

Deborah is a writer, writing workshop presenter and published author. She's host of the Women Entrepreneurs Radio podcast.

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