What Do You Really Want?

A simple question that leads to a better life

Words by Andrew Rocha

What do you really want?

Kids answer this question by making their Christmas list, while adults rush to their own Amazon wish list. Both lists tend to be similar.

A new car, whether a Hot Wheel or a Tesla.
A new gadget, whether a walkie-talkie or a new iPhone.
A new pair of shoes, whether they are glow-in-the-dark shoes or Jordans.

Yet these lists are by no means made in a single instance. Christmas lists are made annually, and Amazon wish lists are ongoing. Whenever an item is purchased, it fills a temporary void, only for another item to take its place on the list. Meanwhile, the acquired item we once desired turns into a piece of clutter that takes up space.

Some people spend a lot of time doing research before purchasing an item to ensure it is the best choice for their circumstances. This helps make the purchase feel justified and ensure our dollars are well spent.

Instead of rushing to research an item, I start to question the desire.

Do I want the new car, or do I want to feel recognized?
Do I want the new phone, or do I want to have more genuine connections with loved ones?
Do I want the new shoes, or do I want to feel comfortable in my own skin?

The former is more obvious when we skim the surface, while the latter is more fundamental when we examine the root cause.
The former is ephemeral, while the latter is meaningful.
The former fills up our homes, while the latter fills up our lives.
What do you really want? The former or the latter?

When we research first and question later, our questions are full of regret and uncertainty.

Why did I buy this thing?
Where am I going to put it?
When will I be able to pay this off?

When we question first and research after, our research becomes more meaningful and helps us identify which purchases will serve a purpose and bring us joy.

What do you really want? To research and then question, or to question and then research?

What do you really want, and which option will you choose?

Andrew Rocha

Andrew runs the Successful Steps Blog, where he writes about achieving success one step at a time. When he isn’t writing, he can often be found walking, reading, or being in nature.


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