LY 52: Owning Your Wants and Needs
How often do you find yourself saying, “No, whatever you want”?
I do, often. And I’ve been pondering why.
Why don’t we own our wants and needs?
The easy answer is, “Well I don’t know what I want,” but because our inner or future selves always knows what she wants, that’s more likely ego. Ego is quick to answer and typically very loud. Maybe a little whiny.
Inner voice on the other hand, even when it’s quick to answer, is peaceful, clear and strong in a different way. In a way that makes you go, “Oh. Ok.” and that’s it.
Ego doesn’t speak in short sentences - it likes to explain, justify, encourage, discourage, and generally ramble on forever until you interrupt it.
And ego likes to chime in whenever it feels like your current self identity is being threatened. It does this to protect you. So what is ego covering up then?
I think it’s covering up the story, often from childhood, that we do not deserve what we want and need. And therefore what we want and need are not valid.
For example, I have long carried this belief that considering how other people feel and making sure everyone around me is happy is a much higher priority than what my inner self wants. It took me 1.5 YEARS to even get in touch with my inner self because this belief was so strong.
When we carry this story that we do not deserve what we want and need, ego will often keep us from acknowledging and validating what we want and need.
Hence the loud statement in your head, “I don’t know what I want!”
In this podcast episode, I shared an example of how when my girlfriend wanted to honor the fact that I am leaving the Bay Area for an indefinite amount of time by accompanying me to things that I want to explore in the city before I go, I wanted to immediately answer back, “No, I want to do whatever YOU want.”
Typical girl fashion, you could say. And why is this? Because, and I’m generalizing here, girls are physiologically and biologically and chemically more wired to process empathy.
Maybe because of this STRENGTH, we also tend to be brought up to always consider how other people are feeling. We are brought up to be highly sensitive to other people’s wants and needs. But based on the way we internalize these strengths and what they mean to us, they can end up becoming our weaknesses.
Meaning, if growing up, you believed that you needed to always sacrifice your own wants and needs in order to be a good person, it might hold you back from confidently and lovingly owning them today.
And that looks like having an underlying mental commentary that says, “I don’t know what I want” and “Wait, but do I really want that? Do I need that? No, that doesn’t make any sense. It’s safer to just do what everyone else wants.”
And that’s the voice of the ego. Ego is your safety mechanism. Ego feeds you thoughts along the lines of, “If you don’t do what everyone else wants, they’ll be unhappy with you, and we really hate that because it’s scary and it feels horrible. So it’s just EASIER to do what they want. We can just do what we want later.” But later hardly ever comes.
And that’s how some of us becoming “people pleasers.”
By discrediting our own (inner self’s) wants and needs so often, our inner voice becomes quieter and quieter and ego’s voice ends up running the show automatically. We reap what we sow.
The more we follow ego’s lead, the more we are validating its fearful thoughts, feelings, and actions. The more we validate those, the stronger those connections (some call them “triggers”) get in our brains, and the harder it becomes to undo them.
Why do we want to own our wants and needs?
I think everyone wants to get to the point of owning their wants and needs. But why? Cue Simon Sinek and his big talk on your “big why.”
Owning your wants and needs is not an egotistical thing.
It’s actually necessary for you to become your future self. (Who is Future Self?)
But if you are anything like I was, you might be feeling conflicted.
I don’t want to be “selfish".
Maybe you see other people who have no shame about owning their wants and needs and think of them as selfish. That’s a thought that I definitely had. I never wanted to be someone who openly and brazenly declared what I wanted all the time with no care for others because I didn’t want to be thought of as “a princess.” I didn’t want to be labeled as selfish.
I wanted to be known as kind and generous and caring, and I equated that to always doing what other people wanted instead of what I wanted.
So here’s the mind twist that someone once asked me: “Jess, is your Future Self a ‘princess’? No? Does she own her wants and needs? What is she like when she does this?”
No, Future Jess is not a princess. She is loving and kind and generous. At the same time, she is also able to own her wants and needs, just in a loving, light, joyful way! So I realized that I CAN own my wants and needs without being a diva about it. I CAN share my wants and needs with expansive love and joy. I CAN put my own spin on it that feels good for me!
So consider your big why. Consider who your Future Self is and what she does about her wants and needs.
What does owning your wants and needs look like?
“I don’t know what I want," like every single thought in your head, is merely that - a thought. And a thought practiced over and over again becomes a belief, and beliefs are stored in the subconscious mind as automatic patterns of thinking and feeling.
For many of us, especially those of us who have people pleasing tendencies, “I don’t know what I want” has become an ingrained belief. We think that often and don’t even realize it. It’s a thought that becomes so automatically played that we aren’t even conscious of it - it’s subconscious.
Do you carry the belief that you don’t know what you want?
The first step in acknowledging what you want is to first acknowledge that you may be carrying a subconscious belief that you DON’T know what you want.
Then you can decide to change it.
Reality is what you make of it, meaning, you can change your beliefs and thoughts at any time. Most of us think that reality is created outside of ourselves, but “in reality,” it’s all created in our minds. (Don’t believe me? Experiment with what I share with you in this episode and see how it goes.)
Right now, ego’s chatter is so loud in your head that you’re not able to hear your inner self. Your inner self ALWAYS knows what she wants. She always knows what is aligned (with love) and what is not. She always knows that whatever is aligned for her is aligned for everyone even when it doesn’t seem that way on the outset.
So once you change your belief from “I don’t know what I want” to “I DO know what I want,” you’re going to start quieting down some of that ego chatter so you can hear your inner self more clearly.
When you first start believing (thinking AND feeling) that you DO in fact know what you want, it may take some time before you start getting clear instructions from your inner self.
It’s worth the wait!!
So give yourself time to practice this new belief. It’s not until your thoughts and feelings are completely aligned with the new truth (I DO know what I want) that you will start connecting to and hearing from your inner self.
Listen to the episode to learn more!
Be sure to listen to the episode to learn a couple of questions to ask yourself in order to start owning your wants and needs so you can become your Future Self!
If you would like to learn more about Rapid Transformational Therapy to rapidly transform your subconscious beliefs (e.g. “I don’t deserve what I want/need”), please check out the RTT FAQ Guide below!
Subscribe & Free Gift
As a coach, I am still constantly learning how to create the life I desire and manage challenges that come up along the way. I started writing daily emails sharing personal stories, examples, and responses to questions in the hopes that it can also spark something great for readers like you.
I send out emails daily, but it can take me a few weeks to post them up on the blog. If you’d like to receive these in your inbox when they come out, please enter your name and email below.
As a thank you, you’ll receive a FREE GIFT, my 4 week Releasing Self Doubt Guide. Self doubt is definitely one the reasons why we attach our self-identity to someone else and end up leading unfulfilling, stress-filled codependent lives. What if who we are isn’t good enough? Cool enough? Smart enough?
If releasing self doubt and replacing it with inner peace and confidence is top priority for you right now, I highly encourage you to check out this Self Doubt Guide. Subscribe below and you’ll get it sent directly to your inbox. Thank you for reading, and I look forward to getting to know you!