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"You can imagine how these bubbles can create economic disasters – because in the end, economics is about sustaining lives. When you don’t know whether the ground you’re walking on is real or could collapse any moment, you’re working with instability and uncertainty, which at the moment are two words that are embedded in our economic system, partly due to the nature of these speculative bubbles.
To give you an idea of the far-reaching consequences these bubbles can have, just think of the recent financial crisis. "

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"Should receiving money be so anxiety-ridden? Or is it living with the lack of money to meet one's needs that is triggered upon receiving such a large sum of money? Why do we all accept and allow the existence of a system that diminishes us, where we accept less as the norm and then when presented with 'free' money experience an initial response of disbelief. Are we not all worthy of a quality life where all our needs are met? Where financial struggle is no longer an issue?"

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"So what is the conclusion? Lol – I think it’s clear those two little words ‘wants’ and ‘needs’ can create quite a bit of havoc in our personal life if the distinction isn’t clear and we don’t look further than the tip of our nose. It’s no wonder we have failed to eradicate poverty so far. And yet, maybe that is all that is required – or at least it is a start – to clearly define the words ‘want’ and ‘need’ for yourself and begin to approach ‘wants’ and ‘needs’ appropriately in your own life. It is one way to start taking responsibility for the ineptitude with which we’ve been attempting to confront global economic problems. If we can address wants and needs effectively in our own life, then we can do the same on a large scale – first making sure everyone’s needs are met and then we can start looking at how to satisfy desires."

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"Recently the movie San Andreas came out bringing in a whopping $54.8 million in its first weekend. So, people flocked to the theaters to be scared, freaked out about a disaster that could/can happen, that was sensationalized by Hollywood with a huge profit for the movie industry moguls. While here in California where Hollywood is located, we are in the worst drought in 1200 years, which is greatly impacting the $43 billion agricultural industry, which is representative in California being the 6th largest economy in the world, where wells have run dry, farms have closed, workers are out of a job and it does not stop there."

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"See – you can want to have a cup of coffee, because you expect that for a moment you’ll really enjoy drinking that coffee and it might assist you being more focused and awake for a short period of time – and when actually having that coffee – that’s exactly what you’re experiencing and what happens. That would be a want with realistic expectations. A want with unrealistic expectations, would be for instance if you want to buy the newest smart-phone because you think your friends will accept you if you keep up with the latest tech trends. What you actually want here, or expect to gain – is acceptance – that is the underlying want you are looking to fulfil. Now smartphones can increasingly do very impressive stuff – but giving you acceptance in yourself and your life is a huge and unrealistic responsibility to place on any phone."

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"Here we can also highlight another dimension that plays a role in deciding what to spend your money on – which is: time. Objectively – we know that if we don’t plan ahead to ensure we have enough funds to cover our needs – be it certain or uncertain ones (for instance, having savings for unexpected medical emergencies) – we will come to a point in time where we will not have enough and be in trouble. Yet – subjectively – short-term gratification can override long-term satisfaction – where we will be willing to ‘risk’ not having enough funds later on, to be able to indulge in a satisfying a want in the present moment. "

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"For most of us – our needs are ‘boring’. Fulfilling our needs forms part of the basic support that we have and give ourselves, but they don’t give us a ‘thrill’, they don’t make us ‘ecstatic’, they don’t even get us excited. A need is not something you ‘feel’ on an energetic level – they don’t make themselves known through a rush. Rather – a need will make itself known through physical discomfort: hunger shows you a need for food, painful feet shows you a need for new shoes, the discomfort of taking showers in ice cold water shows us the need to pay our electricity bill. Needs make themselves known through ‘negative’ physical experiences."

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"With more and more baby boomers reaching and surpassing retirement, there is a glut on the agencies that have been set up to provide for them. And to add to this, these agencies have been faced with drastic funding reductions, which is having dire consequences on the senior population. What is the solution?"

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"If the dictionary uses the word ‘want’ to clarify the word ‘need’ and uses the word ‘need’ to clarify the word ‘want’ – we can be sure we’re on to something. Does this mean that wants simply imply needs and that needs imply wants – because the dictionary says so? No. Remember, dictionaries will reflect our own language usage – so if the word ‘want’ has been used over time to indicate a ‘need’ – then it becomes an ‘accepted use of the word’ and is reflected in the dictionary as such. In the same way, the word ‘need’ has been used to describe ‘wants’ – and so it has become ‘normal’. What the dictionary then shows is how we have confused the meanings of the words ‘wants’ and ‘needs’ for ourselves and started using the terms as synonyms."

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Say that there are two pairs of shoes that each look really appealing – where you actually don’t want to choose between the two and if you had the money – you’d buy them both – but you don’t have enough for both, you only have enough for one pair. So – you have to choose – because in the end you reckon it’s better to come out with one nice pair of shoes than with none at all. So, you make up your mind and buy one pair – and, you know, these shoes are comfortable and nice looking, so you’re quite satisfied with your purchase. BUT – in the back of your mind – there is that other pair of shoes – the ones you didn’t buy and there’s this sense of being unsettled, because – what if you didn’t buy the ‘right shoes’? What if you would have ended up being happier or more satisfied with the other pair – now you’ll never know. That experience of feeling unsettled or uncertain, like a bad taste that kind of spoils your satisfaction with the shoes you bought – that is the opportunity cost of buying the shoes you have.

And it’s interesting – because you went in with no new shoes – and you came out with a new pair of shoes – but somehow it feels like you also ‘lost something’ – as though you had to ‘give up’ the other pair of shoes, because they ‘could have potentially been yours’. What we don’t realize is that: they were never actually ours. Rationally speaking, we couldn’t have lost them, because we never owned them. So – where does that sense of loss come from?
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