28 Jan As a teenager the challenges you face can be tough so how do you know what makes you tick? [Part 2]
In the last article I introduced you to the six essentials needs that, as a human, you live and die by. If your needs are met in balance and in a positive way then you’re onto a sure thing in life. But, if you meet your needs in a negative way then you run the risk of establishing poor behaviours that damage your physical and mental wellbeing and of those around you.
Beware of negative behaviours
If it isn’t possible, for whatever reason, to meet your six basic needs through positive ways, then your needs will still be met but through negative behaviours driven by your unconscious thoughts. Let me explain. Have you ever been in a situation where you blurted something out or did something that you pretty much immediately regretted? A time when you thought ‘I can’t believe I said that’? Perhaps you felt angry, sad or humiliated at the fact you had said or done something that was out of character.
It happens to everyone, but really all that happened was that you violated your own standards to meet your needs in the moment.
‘The moment that you judge someone, you lose the ability to influence them and appreciate their gifts.’
Think about this statement. You know yourself that if you feel as though someone is judging you, you will probably walk away from a situation or shutdown in some way. By removing yourself from the situation or avoiding the people connected to the situation you can save yourself from the outcome of being judged. This same concept is important when you want to influence the people around you. If you say or do positive things and listen to and appreciate their thoughts and needs, you can also meet your needs.
‘Love the person, change the behaviour’.
When your needs are met on a high level, addictive behaviours such as binge-watching TV, over-participating in a favourite sport or over-eating start to happen. Spending too much time meeting your needs can have negative consequences such as a lack of sleep, lack of nutrition or lack of personal hygiene.
Getting stuck in a negative behaviour can be beneficial for the short term because it can help you to learn a lesson or progress in a different direction – one that is for the best. But getting stuck for too long leads to mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression, anorexia, or turning to substance abuse or anti-social behaviour.
Overvaluing your needs
If you overvalue a need it can be met with a negative behaviour that makes you feel better. If you’re feeling down in the dumps, as an example, you may be showered with affection and be paid extra attention by your friends and family. This extra responsiveness will make you feel special, even if you felt bad in the first place. You feel significant because you’re the centre of attention and your needs are met because you are ‘connecting’, have the ‘certainty’ that people will show up, and you’ll even have some ‘variety’ because the type of attention you’re being given could be different.
Subconsciously, the battle between positive versus negative behaviours get linked together in our nervous system, especially when you are feeling down. Have you ever had a friend who constantly seemed to be down, depressed, and negative about life?
It may be that you offered solutions and advice to your friend, tried to help them out in some way and pick up their mood, but they probably didn’t act on this. That’s because, unconsciously, they were thinking ‘why would I change when my needs are being met’? It’s more painful for them to change. This is an example of an addictive behaviour. Soon though, you will get fed up that your friend isn’t listening to any advice or trying the solutions and you’re like ‘I’m done trying to help’. It’s because they are now a drain on your energy and you start to feel down by being around them. It’s sad, but the very thing they wanted the most is the one thing they now stand to lose. So now, it’s more painful to stay in this negative state so your friend is more willing to change.
What need is being met?
I’d like to finish this article by asking you what need you think each of the following situations is trying to meet. Please do share your thoughts with me on social media and if we ever get to meet some day and work with each other on life greatness then we can meet several needs together.
What need is being met if:
- You knew you could earn more money for the next six months?
- You had a set routine every day for the next week?
- A classmate throws a bottle of water across the room?
- A friend always has a date to go on each weekend?
- You are awarded an achievement certificate?
- A friend gets an outrageous piercing?
- A classmate starts to become a bully?
Choose the life you want to lead
You will always have one or two top needs. What are your top needs and how are you meeting them in terms of your health, relationships, work and hobbies? Can you recognise now whether you using positive or negative ways to meet your needs?