Challenge for Growth Prompt #1: Needs vs Wants

20150726_193656Needs vs Wants

Welcome to the first “Challenge for Growth” Prompt!  I look forward to posting a new challenge for you every Wednesday at 5 a.m. PST.  I am also eager to see the posts you create in response.

General Prompt Information:

Since it is easier to make behavioral changes if we focus on them one day at a time, each of the weekly challenges will start with “Today, I focus on…….” It will be up to you to decide how long you want to focus on a particular challenge— one, two, three days or even longer. At some point during the week, publish a post that relates in some way to the subject of the week. Feel free to use whatever form you desire: i.e., prose, story, poem, photograph, etc.

Link your post back to this prompt post. If the pingback doesn’t work, then leave the link to your post in the comment section.  Be sure to include “Challenge for Growth Prompts” as one of your tags.

Throughout the week, I will publish the links for the posts that were created as the result of this prompt.  That way they will be seen by anyone who comes to the Challenge page.

If you don’t have a blog, please feel free to join the discussion in the comment section below.


This week’s challenge is:

“Today I focus on my needs rather than my wants.”

The nature of the mind is that as soon as one desire is met, it is off to the next one, often without taking any time to appreciate the desire that was just realized. An endless stream of wants leads to the experience of scarcity; we never feel full, we never think we have or are enough.

One way to create a sense of abundance in our lives is to decrease the number of our desires. We can do that by putting our primary focus on meeting our needs and then prioritizing our wants. The first step for many people is to learn to differentiate their needs from their wants. Some examples: We need water – We want a soda; We need food – We want a big restaurant meal; We need shelter – We want a new house.

This week practice identifying which of your desires are needs and which are wants. When looking at your list of wants, decide which are the most important to you.  On the day or days you focus on this week’s challenge, give priority to meeting your needs.  If you put energy into obtaining any of your wants, be sure they are ones you have determined to be of significant importance.

Sometime during the week, write a post about Needs vs Wants. It may be a general post regarding some aspect of the topic or it may be about an experience you had when focusing on your needs instead of your wants.

I look forward to seeing where this challenge takes you.


This Week’s Prompt Contributors:

The Bliss We Seek- The Seeker’s Dungeon

2016 Needs- Self Therapy

Needs vs Wants (Haibun)- Traces of the Soul

Resolve- Dream Cloud Diaries

Compassion’s Desires (Haibun)- Tournesol dans un Jardin

Are My Trips to Amritapuri Fulfilling a Need or a Want?- Living, Learning and Letting Go

The Needing Want- Nik’s Place

Needs vs Wants- Journey of a Warrior Womyn



52 thoughts on “Challenge for Growth Prompt #1: Needs vs Wants

  1. I look forward to seeing what my muse will come up with, Karuna. I like that you gives us so much freedom to explore this topic in any form we want and to think about it throughout a few days or the week. I find it interesting your post is on January 6th, we call La fête des rois (three kings day):) Happy New Year, Karuna, wishing you health and wonderful mystical happenings. x

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Reblogged this on Traces of the Soul and commented:
    What a wonderful way to start the new year with a weekly prompt on challenging one’s growth. The topic this week is NEEDS vs WANTS. Check out the website of Karuna, at LivingLearningandLettingGo for her Wednesday prompt on this journey of growth and self-discovery.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I just realized you were referring to Sreejit. He’s my son so I was wondering how you knew my daughter! 🙂 I thought maybe you lived in Amritapuri, India too. I appreciate that you checked out the prompt after hearing about it on The Seeker’s Dungeon. I look forward to reading whatever and when everyou respond to the prompts!


  3. Hey Karuna. You know I love prompts and challenges. I hope to participate, let’s see where the spiritual muse takes me. I too hope you get lots of participants. I did a Mercury Retrograde Challenge last year at this time I believe, and we all do take stock of ourselves this time of year.

    Happy 2016
    Lots of Love

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “The nature of the mind is that as soon as one desire is met, it is off to the next one, often without taking any time to appreciate the desire that was just realized. An endless stream of wants leads to the experience of scarcity; we never feel full, we never think we have or are enough.” This is profound wisdom.
    Thanks, Gerry

    Liked by 2 people

      1. That happened for the post I’m writing now too. I sat down to jot down a few notes and then couldn’t stop. It ended up going a completely different place than I had intended!

        Liked by 2 people

  5. FYI in case you might be interested, Marshall Rosenberg, who created a method called “Non-Violent Communication,” used to speak of “strategies” as being the infinite number of ways a “need” can be met. He said many people confuse strategies with needs, which is what creates the conflicts that most of us fight about. Further illustrating how conflict is at the strategy level, Marshall said that needs are never in conflict… conflict is about TIMING or SELECTION of strategies. We all need rest and fun, but you might want to go to a movie now (fun) while I might want a nap (rest). That provides an opportunity for negotiation in which you put off the movie for an hour while I nap, and then I’ll join you for dinner and the next movie showing.

    Another need/strategy example: “going to the ashram every year” is a strategy to meet a variety of needs such as “spiritual learning and growth, belonging, love, contribution, personal challenge, stimulation, etc.” One of the things that makes Amritapuri such a significant strategy for you, Karuna, is that it meets a huge variety of deeply-felt needs all in one swoop, along with spirituality, thereby giving you juice for the rest of the year.

    The way you can distinguish a need from a strategy is that not every human on the planet needs to go to Amritapuri (a strategy for satisfying a spiritual need), but everyone needs love, belonging, and spiritual inspiration. Everyone needs shelter, but some like Sreejit could satisfy that need easily by sleeping wherever they closed their eyes w/o insisting on owning a house, or even wanting to. Starting to think this way about needs and strategies shines a whole new light on how each of us chooses to live in the world and meet our needs. Another of Marshall’s precepts is that it’s a costly mistake for all concerned to meet one’s own need at the expense of another’s. With a little thoughtful consideration, everyone’s needs can be met through suitable strategies.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Lin for contributing to the prompt by sharing this information. It is very helpful to me and I believe it will be helpful to others. I can relate to everything you said here.


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