“I Want” Is Not Good Enough

At least 90% of the time when someone begins a sentence with “I want … ” I immediately decide to ignore everything else they are about to say.

Here are some things that everyone in the world wants (and much fewer have):

  • To be popular, charming and respected
  • To have plenty of money
  • To be intelligent
  • To own their own time
  • To be really physically fit, functionally and aesthetically
  • To be properly satisfied with their relationships / sex life

I don’t believe a single person in the world would honestly turn down a no-strings-attached, effort-free upgrade in any of those areas if you offered it to them.

Apologies, I’ve just spotted a typo in my previous assertion: these are things that most people in the world wish for, and a select minority want (and even fewer have).

Saying “I want … “ implies…

  • A desire strong enough that the expected reward outweighs the expected effort
  • The stated target is realistic (in the sense that it can certainly be achieved with enough application, irrespective of whether or not it’s a simple or easy outcome)

Under such conditions, people take consistent action, learn from their mistakes and eventually get what they want.

Saying “I wish … “ implies:

  • EITHER a desire not strong enough that the expected reward outweighs the expected effort, and thus a tacit acknowledgement that the only real obstruction is self-discipline (eg. “I’m fat, I wish I could lose weight”)
  • OR a fantastic aspiration that falls outside the “I want … “ category (eg. “I wish I could live forever”)

Too many people substitute the latter for the former, and brand themselves with my mental “Do not take seriously” sticker.  I’ll cut everyone in the first world some slack before age 16, as until that point most people are legitimately restricted by their parents, self-awareness, peers and society – but after that the clock starts ticking.  By age 21, first world citizens (no, this doesn’t apply to North Koreans, comment troll deflected) have had 5 years to get at least a couple of the things they “want”, but dismal few have even managed a single one.  By age 26, a whole decade of potential has been seized (or more likely, wasted) and by age 31 every first world citizen has had more than ample chance to complete the whole list.

Who makes up the less than 10% of people who don’t make me tune out after “I want… “?  For these people, I listen attentively and take mental notes.

  • Children under 16 (I agree with the saying “Adults only ask children what they want to be when they grow up because they’re looking for ideas”)
  • 16 – 21 year olds that demonstrably have at least 1-2 of the items on my 6 point list above
  • 21 – 26 year olds that have at least 2-3 items on my 6 point list
  • 26 + year olds with at least 4-5 items on my 6 point list
  • 31+ year olds with the whole list (the best ones do, and the rest of the switched on ones never shoot off about all the stuff they “want”)

It’s incredible if you pay attention how often people talk about what they “want”.  Even better it’s an incredibly effective way of filtering out potential friends and mentors from the mob.  Bait the topic of current aspirations with “You seem like a cool guy / girl that’s got it together, where do you see your life heading?” if needed.  I recommend this model as an initial framework for those who don’t already have a conscious list of what makes someone worth listening to.  Food for thought for those who do.  Assume slacker until proven achiever.

Read More:  You Are A Man Of Your Times

27 thoughts on ““I Want” Is Not Good Enough”

  1. Let me be the first to comment on this article. I’m writing three crime books as we speak. I’ve been saying to myself and my classmates and friends for a long time that I wanted to become a writer. Well, I eventually stopped wasting time and started writing. I found this to be extremely liberating. I don’t want lots of money but ideally I’d like to go back to France where I was born and re-discover my Parisian kindred spirit. I also want a nice and attractive girlfriend (presumably educated). I don’t want a car. I just want to live simply. As simply as I can. Okay Roosh, where does my comment put me in your opinion? 🙂

    1. My brother has been a struggling novelist for many years and recently published one for the teen “coming of age” genre.
      His hair is curly and he has an old photo of himself about age 4 standing in front of a Morrocan mine with some Arab fellows in caftans, as we were living in Spain at the time.
      When I visited him at his midwestern party school back in the 70s (where he was studying “Journalism”), one of his friends told me that my brother claimed his mom was a Black whore in Paris.

  2. In a similar vein, it helps to project what you want instead of what you would like when speaking to others.
    R.Don Steele advises to avoid the passive phrase “I would like…” (or “it would be nice if..”) when speaking to prospective female partners. Rather than making a request for your needs you should give a command for what you want.
    “I would like to take you out…”
    “Meet me at the Crab Shack…”

    1. That command only works so long the girl is already into you and interested. Otherwise, whatever modal you use to express yourself, it may well fall on deaf ears.

      1. Here’s one that works, “I want to give you an orgasm.” I’ve said this and got what I want within 10 minutes. Likewise I could have said, “I want to tie you up.” Or “I want to pour candle wax on your nipples.” Or any desire that comes to your head.
        Here’s why it works: Girls are very susceptible to ideas being planted in their heads.

        1. Assuming you’re not laying BS (which accounts for a good 75% of the PUA/MRA narrative), that girl already knew you or fancied you at least a little, or was drunk up her skull and wouldn’t probably even remember what happened with you two hours later. True, girls are to be mind-fucked before being fucked, but those sorts of incredibly cool & assertive one-liners only tend to work in a teen flick or in a fantasy world. Peace.

        2. I never said she didn’t know me. If you need full disclosure she was my girlfriend’s best friend – she had slept over in the spare room the night before, my girlfriend had gone to work, I tried to seduce this chick, it wasn’t working at all, she was about to leave, I told her “I want to give you an orgasm,” ten minutes later we were fucking. Nine hours later my girlfriend gets back and this chick is still there. No excuses were required, my girlfriend knew.
          And if you want even fuller disclosure, I ended up having a 3-way relationship with these two for 8 months… before getting bored and kicking that chick out.
          And for the record NOTHING of what I just wrote is bullshit. Unlike 75% of the PUA/MRA’s out there I don’t need to make shit up. Hell, I lost my virginity to an FHM model (coked up nympho, to be more precise) and the shit we got up to in the three months I dated her (before dumping her ass) kinda made every single relationship I’ve had since seem dull and boring.

        3. Sorry dude, that’s a weird innuendo. Recapping:
          1) you slept with your girlfriend’s best friend;
          2) your girlfriend walked into her bedroom, saw you and her best friend in bed together and said nothing, because she “knew”;
          3) that was the beginning of a menage-a-trois that only ended because you got bored, at which point you presumably continued with your girlfriend as if nothing happened;
          4) you lost your virginity to an FHM model (who happened to be a nympho);
          5) you were the one dumping said FHM model
          6) you are complaining that every relationship after said FHM model was dull and boring.
          The logical conclusion of all the above is that…nothing of what you just wrote is bullshit. Alright. Link me to your photos and/or where you live and/or how deep your wallet is, and I might well believe you. Thanks.

        4. Sure, if I were insecure about whether you (someone over the internet who I don’t know and couldn’t give two fucks about) believes me or not I’d send some photos, masturbating furiously at the thought that you were envious of my conquests.
          I mean, fuck, the only reason I disclosed all that was to put in context how I manipulated a chick into fucking me by saying, “I want to give you an orgasm.”

        5. It’s not about you being insecure. It’s about everybody else being secure about what you’re talking about. Exceptional statements require exceptional proof. Perhaps this blog claims to defy the laws of social gravity, but if anywhere in real life you were to boast something along the lines of those 6 points above, you would have to be a Hollywood star, a playboy or a young billionaire to be believed on the spot. Else your face would immediately be laughed at, or politely snubbed at best. Without a shroud of evidence or references to a verifiable identity to substantiate it, much of what gets posted here is just stories, fiction dropped here for the self-referential pleasure of a small community.

        6. Look, I agree that most of the posters here are posers and I call them out all the time. Hell, one or two mods here (I won’t name names as I’m sick of getting banned) are completely full of shit and have been called out on other forums.
          Quote you: “You would have to be a Hollywood star, a playboy or a young billionaire to be believed on the spot.” Uh, you’re right, I’m no hollywood star or billionaire, you have no reason to take my word for it.
          So, will I divulge my name and post photos of myself with my conquests to you? Fuck no; it’s the internet for christ’s sake. But I will give a glimpse into my situation at the time.
          I had signed up to a modelling agency that did catwalks, commercials, catalogs and film (extras). I met girls left and right every time I went and did a gig. Funny enough the best place to pick up for me was on a film set. Once had to spend a week on set surrounded by 50 male models and 50 female models – all top of the line. Was an eye opener and a half – by the end of that week everyone knew everyone and I had three dates (that’s where I met the nympho). So, you see, you don’t have to be rich or famous to get laid, you can just be fucking good looking instead.

        7. Yeah, well you asked. Not my fault. I mean, I didn’t have to work for it, I was just blessed not being born an ugly fuck and not being born Asian or Black or any of the other lower races.

  3. Life is too short to either ‘want’ or ‘wish’ for fulfillment… Command and demand your gratifications.

  4. A very important article for everyone who makes a lot of plans and talks the talk without walking the walk. Along with “I want”, the other useless statement is “I will”. I will lose weight, I will gain muscle, I will go back to school. Stop talking and start doing. As they say – tomorrow never comes.

    1. Reminds me of new year resolutions. If you need a new year to begin before you start doing something, you don’t want it bad enough

  5. “The cloud” is the pop-culture, buzzword du jour for a large array of technologies, most of which have been in use for the past three decades. The lack of privacy associated with data storage and service execution delegated to large datacenters owned by private corporations is really a non-problem. Most large companies and institutions have never trusted public cloud services and will certainly never store their critical information in a datacenter they don’t own and manage directly. That though doesn’t mean they haven’t or will never adopt at least some of the technologies which fall under the cloud umbrella, whether they’re about grid computing, big data (another fancy umbrella!), virtualisation or distributed network storage. In short: the cloud isn’t bad and doesn’t pose a security/privacy threat per se. It’s public clouds owned by the likes of Microsoft, Apple and Rackspace that may pose that problem. I hope this goes some way into clarifying TroubleMaker’s points further.

    1. Many apologies for posting the above under the wrong entry. I reposted it under the “I Hope They Serve Beer In The Cloud” article, where it belongs. I hope Roosh or one of the mods will be so kind as to remove the duplicate entry above. Thanks.

  6. This article makes me feel shitty about 27-year-old me. I only took the right pill recently! Got work to do…

  7. “I want” is a negative statement. This means if you keep thinking it you will always go around in circles. Successful people do not WANT to be successful, they KNOW they are. Handy book for this is ‘What To Say When You Talk To Your Self’. As someone else said, action is stronger then words, but of course all action has a source.

  8. This article assumes that every First Worlder has had a homogeneous upbringing,and therefore produces an incomplete calculation of a person’s actual achievements by looking at his his actual wishes versus his current age.You have to factor in all the person’s circumstances which can act as obstacles to achieving their goal.You must also consider the economic climate of the time.10 years ago all under 31 home owners would have been classified as having lots of money,because of the real estate boom.Then the housing bust occurs and many of them would be financially ruined.
    Your achievement -start-age of 16 could begin even at 50 because not all people have the same life experiences,or the same opportunities.

    1. Agreed, it’s silly to put an arbitrary number such as 16 as starting point. Something else that doesn’t make sense is to put a timeline. What if it takes you a decade to make a lot of money? Does that mean you’re loser because you didn’t get it done in 2-3 years?
      Yeah I don’t think so. I don’t judge people by where they stand in life or what they’ve accomplished (because bad luck and other circumstances can happen to all of us), I judge them at how hard they keep at it.
      If it takes a guy until he’s 50 to get all those things, but at least he worked at it hard for the entire time, I’ll respect him as much as the guy who got it all at the age of 31, maybe even more so as the 50 year old probably struggled harder and had more perseverance.

      1. If you read the article properly, you’d notice I have allowed 15 years in my model for the pursuit of any of those goals. Of course, not everyone starts with the same conditions for each, and so naturally people with the drive and work ethic to do all of them pick up the ones they are most inclined to first (in their initial 5 years, as noted I’m only looking for 1-2 traits before age 21) and build in the others over that 15 year period. Being rich doesn’t have to be (and usually isn’t) the first one people complete, you’re straw-man-ing my point.
        And yes, I have equal respect for the man who is rich at 31 and the man who is rich at 50. But I’d rather spend time with and learn from the former, because he clearly figured it out quicker.
        Also note that my issue is not with non-achievers, but with non-achievers that use the phrase “I want…” I couldn’t care less about people who are happy not doing much and stay quiet about it.

    2. Not a homogenous upbringing, but a realistic potential at achieving all of the items on my list. One man grows up poor but with a father who teaches him to eat well and workout, one man grows up with a father sending him to a great business school but has to overcome the poor dietary habits ingrained in him. Everyone works in the same economy, and “rich” is a relative term.
      Everyone switches on at different points, of course. My point is the ones starting at 16 are the ones to collaborate with and learn from though, that they got started early is indicative of much about them.

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