March 2, 2016

Abundance or Scarcity: It’s All in the Mind?

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In life, we have different ways of viewing the world. Most of us exist in flux between two mindsets.

We either believe there is an abundance of opportunity, goodness and love in the universe, or we believe in the opposite—-that there is scarcity. Some days, we remain smack in the middle, undecided on which way our heart should go.

There is no right or wrong answer. But what we do know is that our ability to trust and let go is directly proportional to our mindset and therefore, our levels of happiness.

When we believe in abundance, our eyes become wider and we are able to notice opportunities everywhere. We become lighter because we know we don’t have to grasp or trudge. We are more willing to go after new and exciting things, and we give it a shot with enthusiasm. If things don’t pan out, we don’t worry much. We know there will be more opportunities coming our way.

With a scarcity mindset, we struggle. We run the risk of getting tunnel vision and believe we are only able to choose from one or two options. We become convinced these are the best opportunities that will ever be presented to us, and if we miss them, there will never be anything similar—let alone better—presented to us.

In abundance, there is a lot of peace. We have space and energy to follow our gut, to create, to achieve, to be of service. We enjoy the process. We trust the process. We become detached. Our soul becomes free to do the things that fill us up. We feel connected with our body, and to those around us. We move through the world with ease.

In scarcity, we are usually in fear, and sometimes, in panic. The emotions are so strong, we begin to lose touch with our intuition, and act erratically. We are not in touch with our body, and all of our energy is being put toward what ifs or “future surfing”—anything but today. Our life begins to shrink.

When we make choices in our scarcity mindset, we tend to make a selection out of the options that are in front of us, because they are presented to us. We run the risk of going for “the next best thing” and not the true desires in our heart. In the short term this may work, but long term, we become disillusioned because we did not go after what we really wanted.

When we make choices in abundance, we may still not get what we want. We may take a pass. We may decide to wait for what is next because we know what we want, and we know it is worth the wait. Or we may chose what is in front of us because we know that it is right, not because it is right here, right now.

Even though we know all of this, the biggest question usually is: how do we know that there is abundance? How can we guarantee that if something doesn’t pan out, there will be more to come our way?

The answer is, we don’t know. If the odds are the same, but one of the choices has a lot more joy, why not choose that one instead?

There is a bus route in our city, the 99 b-line, which runs frequently. I dislike taking the bus, except when it comes to this route. Whenever I rush to the stop, I am hoping the bus will be there waiting for me and the line to get on is just the right length so I don’t have to wait in the rain (it is Vancouver, after all).

Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Sometimes, I can see the bus pulling off as I approach the stop, and in spite of my incredibly fast power walk, I miss it. Do I get disappointed? You bet. Missing my bus sucks. I get bummed out—for a minute. Because I know that unless there is something seriously wrong with our bus system that day, there will be another bus coming my way soon. And who knows? Often the second bus, the one that I do manage to get on, is even better than the one I missed. It is less packed, and I can even get a seat!

If we choose, this is how we can move through life: knowing we can live with intention and go for what we want, but trusting that if we miss it, there will always be something else coming our way. It may not be our first choice, but it may be better than what we wanted in the first place.




Author: Angie Coates

Editor: Travis May

Image: Flickr/Motoki Plasticboy Studio


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