Values are different than human needs. You can bury your values for years and lie to yourself about what you value the most in life, but your human needs are what drives you every day to make certain decisions in life. Finding out about your values is important but finding out about your human needs tell you why you do what you do every day.
Why do some people hold on to their problems rather than make the decision to create a lasting shift? The reason people hold on to their problems is because it meets their human needs. We make decisions all the time based on our 6 human needs, but we don’t value these needs the same way. Anytime your thoughts, feelings, and actions meet 3 of these needs then you become positively or negatively addicted to that action. Tony Robbins explains these 6 human needs the best:
- Certainty: We need to feel certainty to avoid pain and ideally have some comfort. We tend to meet our needs through immediate actions that feels good for a short time, rather than long-term results. That’s why we do it repeatedly because it feels good at the moment and then it drops; whether it’s through eating, drinking, smoking, blaming or yelling at others, working out, and praying. People get certain through different behaviors, what needs to happen for you to be certain?
- Uncertainty: On the opposite side of the spectrum we need uncertainty, because for us to grow we need to be uncertain about the future. We seek uncertainty through activities like Skydiving, mountain climbing, surfing, and any other unknown activities or experiences we are willing to try.
- Significance: The feeling of being special needed, and unique is important. You can do it through working your ass off or destroying everyone else’s hard work. You can be significant through being super successful or being a disaster.
- Connection and love: The need to be connected and loved by others have been with us since the beginning of our lives. From our childhood times, we tend to cry to get our parents love, this continues as we grow up. We complain about our problems and pain in life to be able to get someone else’s love and support. Most of the time men do anything to feel significant, and women do anything to feel loved.
- Growth: We either grow or we die. Progress equals happiness. Anytime you try something new and you see progress you will be happy. Once you reach your goal and you don’t set a new goal then you will lose momentum and go back to be unsatisfied.
- Contribution: Success and happiness is not just about how creative, smart, or how driven we are; but rather it’s our ability to connect with, contribute to, and benefit from the ecosystem of people around us.
People give up their values, goals and dreams to meet their needs. Procrastination and inefficiency traces back to not being able to make decisions and to prioritize needs. Sometimes in one’s life, there are many things to be accomplished and many decisions to be made for a business or one’s personal life. This can become overwhelming if one doesn’t have the life skills to manage the situation effectively. Through categorizing and creating a list of priorities aligned with one’s values and needs, a person’s decision-making process can become more effective and efficient.