There are certain core needs that need to be met before we can focus on things that will make us happy. Being in survival mode doesn’t allow us to pursue happiness. Imagine yourself being thrown into the woods to live only with the clothes on your back. You’d spend all your time looking for food, water, and trying to build a shelter. You’d probably ask yourself “how fulfilled do I feel?” much less than if you were in your air conditioned home with a refrigerator full of food.
As Abraham Maslow explains “People must fill their physiological and security needs, for safety, sustenance, and warmth, before they can take care of their social and esteem needs. So as you learn to avoid starving and freezing in the woods, you may then start thinking about your life expectations.”