Listen, I wouldn’t dare tell anyone to ignore or suppress their needs. It’s 9am on a Sunday, Mother’s Day to be exact, and before I go and do the usual thing and reach out to all of the women in my life- I need some time for Jesse. Needs-based psychology is powerful because it doesn’t matter what you physically “DO” on the outside; if you’re not taking care of your most fundamental need, YOU WILL BE MISERABLE. Think back for a second to a time when you sacrificed your needs for someone else’s. It feels good right? Well that’s not what this post is about. I want you to think about a time when you sacrificed your needs and they continued to go neglected- completely different kinda feeling hunh? Why do we remain in bad relationships? Why do we call people who never take the initiative to call us first? Why do we buy things to impress people we either don’t know, or who wouldn’t care even if they did know? I honestly believe that human beings are creatures of connection. We need it- we crave it-and when we don’t get it- we take it!
Over the past week or so, i’ve been personally neglecting phone calls from so called friends who only call me when they need something. And what’s funny is that I actually save their names in my phone as, “so-and-so who always needs somethhing”, just in case I forget and accidentally answer their phone call and get emotionally dragged into a their vortex again. Yes, I know that sounds petty. But one of the decisions I made since my 30th birthday is in a few weeks, (yes I know you’ve just rolled your eyes), is that I refuse to put myself in a situation where I am not equally honored and respected to the degree that I am honoring and respecting someone else. Now, what you do that you call “work”, well that’s different- for that four letter word, we can withstand all sorts of beatings and micro-aggression and wins and losses and sacrifices, all at the expense of taking care of ourselves and our families. However, what you decide to do with that other four letter word called “time”, as in your “free-time”, that part is on you. So, if you find yourself in a friendship where you call them more than they call you. Perhaps you need to re-examine whose needs are being met moreso than the other. If you find yourself doing favors moreso than receiving favor and good fortune- then you need to re-examine that situation. Hey, our psyche’s can only take so much- people can literally make you feel like a car that’s out of gas. Life needs you, but you can’t be a proper instrument of life if you’ve allowed other people to wear you down, to the point that your tune has changed. The prior sentence is my analogy for bitter folks. I personally think that one of the biggest reasons that people become bitter is because for whatever reason-whether it’s due to the fact that the world behind their eyes never quite matched the world in front of their eyes, or their level of experience never quite added up to the level of their expectation, said persons turned inside and allowed themselves to harden, instead of taking charge of their experiences, to the best that we all can, and giving themselves the experience of love, that they probably feel should come externally. Little children have imaginary friends- those are the games they play. We adults play an entirely different game. There are no brownie points for the suffering soldier. Religion has it wrong. That is not the abundant life that Jesus came to bring- hell, he was surrounded by 12 friends, although two of them betrayed him, (which is why we need to re-examine the qualifications of being a friend). Take care of yourself and life will take care of you because the energy that you put out is one of love and connection and fulfillment, which will more times than not, give you the chance to be in predicaments where you can receive the very energy that you are putting out. But also, have the wisdom and the courage to walk away from circumstances where you are not honored. God is not in the dishonoring good people business- don’t let your spiritual courage be mistaken for a weakness-it’s one of the strongest parts of the human spirit.