Although everyone on this planet has needs, it doesn’t mean that everyone on this planet feels comfortable with their own needs. And it could be said that when one does feel comfortable with their needs, their life is going to be a lot easier.
In this case, not only is one an interdependent human being; it is also possible for them to embrace this fact. Whereas when one doesn’t feel comfortable with their own needs, it is going to be a challenge for them to accept this.
One way of seeing this would be to imagine a tree that doesn’t feel comfortable with accepting what the earth has to offer. It could find that while some of its roots are in the ground, most of its roots are not.
As a result of this, the tree could end up looking more like a bush, and this is because it is roots are unable to pass on the nutrients that to needs in order to grow. Another way of looking at this would be to say that the tree is simply surviving as opposed to thriving.
And while other trees could wonder what is going on and say to the tree that the earth is there to support them, this might not take place. Yet if it was to happen, the tree could ignore what is being said.
However, the tree could also be in an area where there are no other trees, or it could be surrounded by other bushes. In this case, there is going to be no reason for the bushes to say anything and this is because they look the same.
So just like a tree that is unable to get the nutrients that it needs in order to develop, one can find that it is not possible for them to get what they need in order to develop. And they could find that the reason they are not getting what they need is because they are not asking for what they need.
Their situation could then be compared to the tree that is not growing because all of its roots are not in the ground. It is then not that is not possible for one to have their needs met; it is that they don’t reach out to others.
One may have people around them who tell them to express their needs, and there could be moments where this takes place. Or they could hear what they say and it might not have an effect on their life.
At the same time, one could be in a position where the people they surround themselves with are in a similar position. Yet they could also find that they are so focused on other people’s needs that they don’t have time to think about their own.
If this is the case, the people around them might not realise that one is overlooking their own needs. They could see them as someone who is only too happy to be there for others, and this could make them believe that they don’t even have needs.
As a result of having relationships that are like this, one may find that it is only possible for them to get their needs met indirectly. But if they are caught up in other people’s lives, this is something that is to be expected.
In the eyes of others, they could come across as someone who is happy, positive and easy going, for instance. Thus, they could see them as some kind of role model, and it could then be normal for people to look up to them.
But regardless of how they usually come across, it is unlikely to match up with how they feel on the inside. When they are by themselves or around certain people, another side of them might end up coming out from time to time.
During these moments, they could feel frustrated, angry and powerless, and as though they have no control over their life. They could also experience resentment towards the people they help and the ones who get their needs met.
Feeling like a victim could then be something that they have become accustomed to, but even if they know why they don’t reveal their own needs, it doesn’t mean that their life will change. They could believe that this is just something that they have to put with in life.
If they were to look into why they generally don’t reveal their needs to others, they might find that it’s because they believe that their needs are not important. Through having this outlook, it will be normal for them to hide them from others.
It is then not going to be much of a surprise for them to have moments when they are out of touch with their own needs, and this is because they believe that they can’t have them met. Disconnecting from their needs can then be a way for them to avoid the pain that they would experience through not having them met.
A Deeper Look
When one believes that their needs are not important, it can due to how their caregivers responded to their needs during their childhood years. This could have been a time where their needs were ignored and dismissed.
Through being treated in this way, one would have ended up feeling ashamed of their needs, and it would then be normal for them to hide them from others. This would also have set them up to believe that other people’s needs are more important than their own.
In order for one to realise that their needs are important, it will be important for them to question what they believe and they may have some emotional work to do. This could be a time where they need to grieve their unmet childhood needs and to process the toxic shame that is within them.
The assistance of a therapist and/or a support group may be needed here.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.