Difference Between Need and Want

The need and the desire are two different concepts, which can sometimes lead to confusion, but while the need refers to the essential things to live, the desire focuses on what one would like to obtain, but which is not a basic need. .

Desire refers to all those things that are aspired to achieve, but are not essential to live. They are not a basic need. The achievement of a desire is not something radical that supposes life or death, but it has a lot to do depending on the person, the value and the category that is given to a certain thing. For example: for one person perhaps his greatest wish is to buy a yacht, and for another that the subway stop is close to her house.

Each one gives a different value to what they want, and that also means that it is easier to get it or not. Perhaps it is more complicated to buy a yacht, or to save for it, than to live near a metro stop whose main objective is to be able to save time and proximity in a means of transport that saves time.

Fulfilling desires can make the person who achieves them happier, but it is equally important to balance them with needs, since these are essential to be able to live.

The need refers, generally, to essential issues in order to survive. From the most basic, such as primary needs, to some more advanced ones, such as secondary needs and tertiary needs that are fulfilled when the first ones are satisfied.

This order of needs corresponds to Maslow's pyramid , in which he emphasizes that the primary ones correspond to the most essential ones such as drinking, eating or breathing. Later, he already talks about those necessary to have a safer life such as medical assistance, vaccines, and in the last ones he focuses on the social section in which those in which the individual has social recognition, or belonging to a group of friends, for example.

Differences between need and want

These are the most outstanding:

  • Needs are more important than desires because some of them are essential to survive: drinking water, breathing, eating...
  • Desires on the contrary are not essential for life, but they do make those who fulfill them happier.
  • Needs are not questionable as they are vital. On the other hand, the desires respond to the value that each one gives them in terms of their fulfillment and execution.
  • Desires can be unlimited, but it is important to value those that can be fulfilled and an order of hierarchy that makes them more accessible according to life circumstances. For example, if a wish is to buy a country house, it will probably be possible to achieve it after several years of working, and not just immersed in the labor market.

It is essential to always differentiate desire and need. Having clear objectives, and knowing that desires are a way to get an incentive to be happier, but taking care not to get lost in them deliberately. Yes, it is vital to know that needs are something essential for life, especially when talking about the most basic things such as breathing or eating.