(An unmet Need causes us to feel empty, incomplete, or less than whole. Fulfilling a Need gives us freedom to be ourselves.)

Most Needs reflect a feeling that something is missing, a hole in us, therefore we need the outside to supply it. Once supplied, we feel whole and okay – for a while. Then it gets used up, the Need re-arises, the cycle continues. That’s what most Needs are.

This one is the inverse of most Needs. It is a need to not have something come in from the outside. When it does, it doesn’t feel good.

Imagine being criticized. If you have this need, you don’t like it one little bit. It stings. Or worse. Everyone gets criticized from time to time, it’s part of the human condition, but if you have this Need, being criticized can have an outsized impact.

A person with this Need will spend a lot of energy to avoid the pain it causes. Their criticism-avoiding behavior can affect relationships, business decisions, career choices. Having this Need can even restrict their freedom.

Criticism is really only someone’s opinion. The emotionally healthy person lets the opinions of others slide through without ‘hooking’. Noticing what an opinion is, sure; learning from it, possibly; changing, if it’s useful; but not ‘owning’ the criticism. It’s just their opinion.

Coaching Point: If you don’t have this Need, when and how did you get it handled?

Copyright 2021 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.