Oddly enough, this same principle applies to humans. When some folks get unhappy, they seek item after item to fill up with to alleviate their discontent. Sometimes discontented overweight people lose a bunch of weight only to find the unhappiness eventually returns. Some lonely people find numerous companions with the same eventual conclusion. One woman found solace in buying endless furniture for her home. A man would change-out cool car after cool car: same result. Our friend “preacher-hopped”, hoping for external inspiration to meet a need. The examples could go on and on. Seeking happiness by fulfilling a need is like stuffing endless dough into the hole of a doughnut, only to watch it fall through. And, to make matters worse, people convince themselves that the reason they are still unhappy is that they just haven’t found the right thing that they need to make them happy. Loosely translated it reads: “I need, I need, I need”. But it never fills the hole.
So what to do? There is no one definitive answer because everyone is different and the problems are varied. However, worth consideration is the opposite of I need: I give. Note this is not the magic answer to all forms of unhappiness, but for those lost in their own needs, perhaps it is. Can we find ourselves in extending kindness, extra patience or generosity? Writing letters or postcards to people (including family) who will be joyous at receiving something from us? Helping a person at work who could use a hand, even if they don’t deserve it? An unhappy wife receives the extra kindness of her husband who is trying to undo his issues and make her happy, but without reciprocated kindness, his efforts will likely yield no positive changes. I need, I need, I need never stops without I give.