The needs of man are endless, this is a statement of fact, and one we can easily agree on. It’s true that each and every one of us, regardless of our present state, desires to live a better life. These desires, predominantly luxurious, range from the desires to drive big cars, live in choice areas, fly first class etc. As good and as valid these desires may be, there’s a need to understand how to properly go about them. A Yoruba adage says, when trees fall on each other, it is the one on top that you remove first. In economic terms, this is called ‘scale of preference,’ which simply means understanding how to arrange your needs in stratums.
You see, one major hindrance to living the luxurious lives we desire as humans are our basic human needs. While we can put our desires on hold, doing the same to our basic needs is difficult, almost impossible. These needs are by their nature very essential to our sustenance and as such command urgent attention. This explains why the bulk of our limited resources are expended primarily on taking care of these needs. They are that important, and that is why they get to constrain us from splurging on luxurious desires. However, when basic needs are no longer our pressing concerns, we become capacitated to have the luxuries we desire.
Now, take for example, a man who is struggling with putting food on his table or can’t pay his rent. Such a man putting money aside to buy a Mercedes Benz E class, unarguably, has his priorities out of place. Don’t get me wrong, the Benz E class is a great ride, and I myself desire to own one. But then, putting such desires ahead of pressing needs only translates to misplaced priorities. It makes no difference at all how valid this man’s reason for wanting the Benz is. Beyond his need for an exquisite car to drive around town are more pressing needs like food and shelter. And, believe me, you wouldn’t know how badly you need a house till night falls and you have nowhere to lay your head.
Now, imagine, for some seconds, that for the rest of your life you’d always have food, shelter, and clothing – some have argued mobile data belongs on this list too, lol. I am guessing the thought of such a secure and comfortable future alone is making you grin. So, take for another example, a man who has found how to make passive income pay for his basic needs. Such a man would be able to think clearly about how to put money together for whatever his soul desires. And, going after the luxuries his soul desires wouldn’t translate to misplaced priority for the man in this example. The fact that basic human needs are no longer his immediate concern affords him this financial freedom.
All I’m trying to say is, your first goal should be how to sort out your basic human needs. These are more pressing than every of your other needs and should be treated as the priorities that they are. Only when these basic needs have been sorted out should you allow yourself focus on chasing after your other desires. Sorting these needs out should be what determines how much leeway you have on your quest to attain your desires of luxuries. No good will ever come out of putting your desires for a better life before your basic human needs. Be smart.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Adebayo Abiodun is a teacher and a writer. You can connect with him on Instagram @Oluwalere. You can also send him a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org