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Is scarcity mindset affecting your happiness & progress?

The clock had struck midnight when I reached home. My mom had phoned me a couple of hours earlier. I found her on the bed crying. The house was in an unusual disarray, with things been strewn about.

My father had left.

While leaving, he had also taken all the cash and valuables with him. In the ensuing weeks, we found out that he had taken loans by forging my mother’s signatures. For a good few years, bank officials hounded us for payments and we had to come up with new ways to dodge them. It was a very dark period in our lives. At the time, I had just finished high school.

My mother had about $200 in her purse and that is all we had when we had to start all over again. But in our story, an abundance mindset is what allowed us to rebuild our lives – one small decision at a time. And we learned some great lessons in the process.

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Scarcity and abundance mindsets are two completely different sides of the same coin and holding one instead of the other can bring drastically different results in our lives in literally all possible areas.

But what are scarcity and abundance mindsets?

Scarcity vs. Abundance Mindset: What are they?

A scarcity mindset is when you (unintentionally) look at life as a finite pie, where only a few can have what they want from life, and where opportunities and resources are limited at best.

On the other hand, an abundance mindset allows you to look at the world with different eyeglasses.

The latter makes you feel like there are more than enough opportunities for everyone.

Besides, everyone has different goals, dreams, and aspirations, and each person defines happy/ abundant living differently. Today I want to dig a little deeper into these ideas and challenge you to read this article with an open mind (and heart).

– Are you someone who finds it hard to feel happy when a friend is doing better than you, even though you want to?

– Are you always comparing yourself to others?

– Are you placing unwarranted pressure on yourself to be first, or the best, or be very different from the rest – all the time?

– Do you feel that you don’t have the right connections or tricks to get you where you want to go?

– Are you constantly worried about money?

– Do you have a perpetual sense of lack – that there is never enough money, time, love, connection?

Can you relate to one, few, or all of these? No shame. I think we have all been there at one point.

Recognize the problem

A lot of times we remain in this state simply because we are unable to recognize that it is in fact an issue that we may be dealing with. Or, because we have always been thinking the same thoughts and having the same patterns that it feels normal.

Or life unfolded in ways we did not imagine that led to this thinking eventually and now we are recognizing that it is not serving us. Whatever it is, you have arrived at a point where you recognize the problem and it is a perfect starting point for change.

Believe in yourself

A scarcity mindset does not just make it difficult for you to succeed, it can impact all areas of your life from business to personal. It can stop you from trying new things, stunt your ability to go for bigger and better things, and generally limit your happiness.

You rarely get anywhere when you are trying very hard to prove your worth to other people. Instead, learn to believe that you are enough. Trust that you will and can take the steps that will help you reach your dreams. And that you are worthy of the greatest things that life has to offer. Above all, trust the process.

What also opens doors and takes you places is your confidence in yourself and your belief that every person deserves their place in success. Above all, adopt empowering beliefs like shared success is even better than standing alone at the top of the mountain.

Some of the most beautiful experiences come when you are cheering on the people you love, and celebrating their wins as if they were your own. It would be a sad and quiet life if you and all your friends went about being envious of one another, not wishing one another joy and success, and walking down your own paths silently.

In my life, some of my closest friends are my ‘direct competition’ but we cheer each other on and share tricks of the trade. It benefits everyone and it helps to know that there is more than plenty to go around.

Each of us is confident in our abilities to be and do so much and create things that attract different audiences. Above all, those beautiful relationships simply wouldn’t have room to exist with a scarcity mindset.

Change your self-talk

Maybe your scarcity mindset has been stopping you from chasing your dreams all along. Maybe it is the root cause of why you don’t have fulfilling relationships in your life. All of us have a natural tendency to lean into and believe the thoughts we hear in our heads. But most often than not, they are just that; thoughts. A lot of times, they don’t have anything to do with reality.

Here’s a nice little meditative technique you can apply to cut through the noise and really chase those negative voices out. Sit down and just observe your thoughts like you would observe cars driving by, or the birds flying without judgment. While you are doing it, just put your feelings aside for a few moments.

What did you learn from this experience? Maybe you now have some idea of the kind of thoughts that are stopping you in your tracks? Do you know what stopped me for the longest time from starting a business?

At a subconscious level, I believed that it was supposed to be hard. And I went out of the way to make it hard for myself. As a professional writer who would whip up a top-quality blog post in an hour, I was taking days and still barely finishing a blog for my own site. I literally recognized I was the biggest roadblock to my own success. I was pushing the accelerator while having my foot on the break!

I realized that if we don’t notice our thoughts, we can very easily sabotage our progress and happiness.

Wrap up

Recognizing the thoughts that are not serving you is the number one thing you can do to start moving in the right direction. The second step is to flip the script consciously. This is how you would start to course correct. Can you guide yourself towards more positive, abundance-driven thoughts?

As you progress further in this process, it will become easier. It will be easy for you to recognize thoughts that are not serving you, thoughts that you feel are pushing you in the corner, making you feel smaller, and play smaller.

Weave gratitude into your life. Make it a point to either journal 10 things daily that you are grateful for, or simply sit in silence and count your blessings. It feels liberating to find my way back and reconnect with all the blessings I have. Moreover, a small shift, a subtle redirection can help give you a great new perspective (and start) to life.

– What if every new obstacle presents a new opportunity?

– What if your gut feelings and intuition are always right?

– What you have more than enough resources for what you need at this moment?

– What if it’s more resourcefulness that you need and not resources?

– What if you make mistakes? What’s important is that you keep moving forward despite them.

To be honest with you, learning to have an abundance mindset is a lifelong process. So many of us carry self-limiting beliefs from childhood. Some patterns don’t serve us, those that we may have acquired from our parents and families as we were growing up.

Start paying closer attention to your head and heart. What kind of situations arouse those negative, self-deprecating, scarcity-inducing thoughts in you? It is time to stop them in their tracks.

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