Everyone Wants 5 Things

At the core, everyone wants 5 things. The only difference is how we describe and pursue what we want.

Everyone wants 5 things. Image of text on an image of parchment.

Everyone wants 5 things:

1. Everyone wants to feel good about their life.

You might feel good about your life because you feel superior. You’re prettier, thinner, smarter, or more successful.

You might feel good about your life for noble reasons. You care about people, or you show up to serve.

Even Stoics, who believe the good life is about logic, feel good about the logical life.

2. Everyone wants to enjoy their work.

I know you want to enjoy work when you’re frustrated that you hate work. One reason you change jobs is the desire to enjoy work.

Do what matters. You don't find purpose at work. You give purpose to work. Image of a squirrel with a nut.

3. Everyone wants to matter.

You didn’t get up this morning thinking, “I hope I don’t matter.” One reason people contemplate suicide is they feel they don’t matter.

4. Everyone wants fulfilling relationships.

When you feel joy, you want someone to share it with. When you feel angry, you want to tell someone who understands.

You want people to know your name and understand what matters to you.

5. Everyone wants to achieve something.

Gamers want to win. Managers want results. Parents want to raise happy kids. Even Buddhists want to eliminate craving.


Leaders succeed when they help people get what they want.

“You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” Zig Ziglar

Everyone prioritizes the above list in personal ways. Achievement means more to some than others, for example. But everyone wants 5 things.

What would you add to the above list of Everyone wants 5 things?

How might life change if you worked to help others get what they want?

Still curious:

3 Ways to Do What Matters Today

7 Relationship Building Rules for Results-Driven Leaders

The PERMA Model: Your Scientific Theory of Happiness