What Do You Need, Right Now?


After all these years in the Deep South, I've finally found a Scarlett O'Hara decor! On April 6 at a fund raiser for breast cancer survivors, at the Callanwolde Fine Arts Center, Atlanta.

“What do I need?” is one of the most powerful questions a person can ask themselves. A rewarding one too since answering your deepest needs will give you more joy and better health.

“What do I need?” If your body is sending signs of being unsettled when you ask the question, this may be a sign that it’s time for some “you time” to check in and find out what you are truly feeling and needing in your life at this moment.

You may need to acknowledge sadness or grief that remains after an event that took place in the past—even a long time ago. You may need to step out of that additional work project that you recently volunteered to take on. The urge for closing an “unfinished relationship” may arise in your life. You may want to shout out an old anger, or to lie on a beach for a week.

There’s a great benefit to answering your deepest needs --it will give you more joy and better health. There’s also a challenge that comes with this process. Answering your own needs may not necessarily be what society, your friends or your family want you to be—which in turn can bring friction. To that, I’ll answer, there is no life without some friction--at least from time to time.

So, are you ready to identify your needs? First, you'll need to set aside some time. Then, you’ll need to pause and listen to your soul. A way to do this is to start a yoga practice. Consider your mat like a therapist’s couch—except your yoga practice helps you get in touch with your body with no risk of getting lost in your own words. The combination of breathing and movements brings up feelings, memories, insights that you’ve, most probably, unconsciously suppressed in your everyday life and “to-do” list. Once these images come up and tell you what your need of the moment is, you can choose to move into action or not.

That’s exactly how I moved from Paris to Atlanta. Twelve years ago, while I was living in my native Paris, an American friend invited me to a Thanksgiving dinner. Her brother-in-law had flown from Atlanta to be part of the festivities, and to spend a week in the City of Light. We fell in love... A week later once John was on the airplane on his way back to Atlanta, I convinced myself that the week of romance was just a fling and that it was better to move along and forget about him. Back in my Parisian routine shortly after, I went to my yoga teacher’s class. Once on the mat, tears started to roll down in the silence of the room and in connection with my breathing. At the end of the class, Aline, my teacher said, “there are things that we need to live.” A month later, I flew to Atlanta spending Christmas with my new love.