Sunday, October 06, 2013

Power Is the Ability to Create Need

Power: the capacity or ability to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of events.
Here's another way to think about it:

Power is the ability to create need in others.

The next time you feel powerless or you're upset about your unmet (or possibly uncommunicated) expectations, ask yourself, who has power over me? What need do I have, and who put it there?

The obvious culprit is the main stream media controlled by a very small number of corporations. As you move beyond this influence, you arrive to your family, friends, neighbors, fellow church gowers, coworkers, etc. Most of them probably form their needs based on the 4,000 or so advertisements thrown at them daily. So you're back at the mainstream media again.

Needs are most often created in your mind by outside forces.

Those in power all around us create needs. They don't even have to be real needs. As long as we believe our "want" or "desire" is a need, we'll be controlled by it. Governments and corporations do this daily.

The trick is being free of falsely created needs.

If you're reading this in the United States, chances are you're already more wealthy than most people living in the world. Stuck in debt? The house and car you "own" may be a need created by someone else. Maybe you have a need to watch your favorite nightly shows instead of something more productive. The need to eat out? The need for fine clothes? The need for latest smart phone?

Use whatever example works for you. The important point is this: the needs which often define the every day actions of our lives may not be real needs at all. We may have been convinced by others to adopt them. The things which feel out of our control might simply be readjustments in our thinking of needs.

Our parents and grandparents worked for years to obtain what many of us expect right out of college. Our expectations are powerful. If we let others create them for us, we give them power that was meant for us.

Don't blindly let others create needs in your life unless you're actively choosing them yourself. Live intentionally and evaluate the powers you're willing to give up.

To be clear, I'm not stating absolute truths here... just throwing out some thoughts for contemplation and discussion. Did it get you thinking differently? What needs do you have which hold power over you?

Side note: after finishing this post, I watched Zeitgeist: Moving Forward last night which was really thought provoking. A quote which stood out to me: "You have to create problems to create profit."