All afternoon, I consider the difference between perceived need and actual need. If I live my life based on what I perceive I need, I sometimes end up harming myself. I either indulge or deprive myself based on unreliable data.
For example, I realize today just how little water I actually drink. The reason? I never feel thirsty. In fact, if I went by perceived need, I wouldn’t drink anything at all, ever. I just don’t get thirsty.
On the other hand, I believe I’m hungry all the time. I love to eat, and if I went by perceived need, I would eat my weight in chocolate. I just don’t ever feel full.
So I implement guidelines to help–external, expert sources–to govern the day. I eat within my calorie limit, and I drink several glasses of water. I take medicine I know I need. I enact spiritual disciplines I know transform me. But I often don’t feel as if I need these things.
I wonder what else I actually need that I don’t perceive as a need. Conversely, I wonder what I insist I need that isn’t actually a need.
I don’t want to live by unreliable perceptions anymore. Some days, my feelings just aren’t the truth.
Living with flair means applying reality checks to my perceived needs (or lack thereof). Sometimes what we need most of all resides deeper in the heart beyond the reach of our emotional states. So I press on, hydrating my soul with the things I know it needs, even when my emotions direct me towards toxic, dehydrating things.
Journal: What do I need that I feel I don’t? What don’t I need that I feel I do?