Men & Emotional Needs.

Men & Emotional Needs.

Men and Emotional Needs – A Conversation that does not happen…. enough.

What Are Personal Emotional Needs?
Personal Needs (versus body needs such as water, food, shelter and love) are those things we must have in order to be our best.
One can get through life fairly well not having these Needs met, but for a fulfilling, rewarding and successful life, personal needs must be identified, addressed and handled. Many of us spend our lives trying (consciously or not) to get these needs met.

Yes men have them. So do women. But men are much less inclined to feel comfortable talking about them. Another off the table subject  – as a function of the ‘men don’t do emotions’ culture.

Getting Started.

Mostly we don’t know what our Needs are.  Why would you if you have never tried to figure them out?!

Fortunately, now that ‘it’s good to talk’ and the continuing recognition of the mental health realities (this is mental wealth) men can start doing the Emotional Needs Work.

A Starter For Ten.

At the last count there were approximately 200 recognised Emotional Needs.  (You will find them on the NeedLess programme)

To make it easy, they fit somewhere into the 9 Groups below. I challenge you to enquire the notion that you will resonate with all 9 at some level or other. Go on gents give it a go.

1. Security:
We need a safe place—an environment that enables us to lead our lives without experiencing undue fear and that allows us to develop our potential.

2. Volition:
In order to feel fulfilled, we need to feel like we have the power to exist autonomously and direct our own lives.

3. Attention:
We need to receive attention from others we care about and also give them attention in return.

4. Emotional connection:
To be emotionally fulfilled, we need to feel connected to other people. We need to experience friendship, love, and intimacy.

5. Connection to the wider community:
We are social creatures, and our brain is a social organ. We need to feel connected to something greater than ourselves.

6. Privacy:
Mental and emotional well-being require that we have time and space enough to reflect on and learn from our experiences.

7. A sense of status:
It’s not enough to have a group. We need to have a sense of our value within the group dynamics we’re part of.

8. A sense of achievement:
In order to maintain our self-esteem, we need to have a sense that we are accomplishing things of value.

9. Meaning:
In the same vein of feeling that we’re accomplishing things of value, we all need to have the sense that we’re part of something greater than ourselves, having a coherent set of beliefs about life and what’s it all for.

The Point?

The better men become at recognising their Emotional Needs, the further we move from the antiquated one dimensional ‘how men should behave’ nonsense that perpetuates our workplace and limits men’s emotional expression and intelligence. The further away we move, the more welcoming, diverse and inclusive that climate becomes.

I know this for sure, the men who have handled their Needs see it and have this clearly validated to them.


Paul Fox

Paul Fox has been active as a Construction Industry Performance Coach for the last 20 years and remains at the forefront of Collaborative Working and High Performance Team Behaviours. He disrupts the status quo of individuals, project and senior teams who want exponentially more output with much less struggle.

Comments are closed.