It’s Monday. I look in my closet, and think, “I have nothing to wear.”
It’s Thursday. I look in the pantry, and think, “I have nothing to eat.”
It’s the holidays. I am bombarded with commercials showing shiny new cars with gigantic red bows and I think, “I’ll never be able to afford that.”
Does this sound familiar? It may sound like regular old pessimism or “just being realistic,” but it’s really a sign of something else- of living from a place of scarcity instead of abundance. Constantly thinking “I never have enough of something”- whether it’s money, food, clothes, or stuff- puts us in a place of ignoring/not seeing possibilities and always feeling “less than”.
When I look in the fridge and think “there’s nothing to eat,” I am blind to all the items I do have that I could make a decent meal from. Asking “what do I already have to work with?” instead shifts our mindset to possibilities and problem-solving.
When we look at our closets and say “I have nothing to wear,” or “I’ll never have enough money to afford __”, or “I wish I had ___, I’d be so much happier”, it sets our minds on a negative perspective towards all sorts of other things- the feelings of scarcity can snowball, if we let them. We can become less generous with others because we worry about not having enough for ourselves, or we buy more than we need or can afford to fill the void of feeling “less than.”
The things we tell ourselves help shape outcomes: not in a “believe you’re getting a million dollars and you will receive it!” kind of way, but in that the inner monologue we have with ourselves shapes our choices, attitudes, and outlook on life.
I spent way too much time on Etsy awhile ago looking at art for the nursery I’m putting together. I bookmarked so many beautiful, whimsical images, but the idea of actually buying any made me feel a bit guilty with all of the more necessary baby expenses to come. When I stopped and thought, “what do I already have to work with?”, I remembered a watercolor flower drawing that I already had, already loved, and already fit the color scheme I was envisioning. It was perfect!
Asking “what do I already have” can open our eyes to the abundance of things around us that normally go unnoticed. It reminds us “I have this, and this, and this…” to work with, cook with, repurpose, upcycle, refashion, or regift.
So as April 15th approaches and I’m reminded that it’s time to pay taxes yet again, I’m also reminding myself to live from abundance, focusing on and being grateful for what I do have instead of focusing on what I don’t 🙂 .
There is so much abundance around us, if we remember to look for it! How are you choosing to live from abundance today? Comment & share below!
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