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Last Updated on May 1, 2023 by Chris Panteli
How to Develop an Abundance Mindset
Do you see the world as a competition, where someone’s win is another’s loss? Do you hoard money and things, fearing there’s only so much to go around? Do you often experience a sense of lack, believing that it’s too hard (or impossible!) to fulfill your desires?
You may be experiencing a scarcity mindset. And it’s not just woo-woo.
Research from Princeton and Harvard shows having a scarcity mindset affects real-world decision-making. The study found that living with this mentality leads to “a drop in cognitive function similar to a 13-point dip in IQ.”
Fortunately, you can change this at any time. Cultivating the opposite of the scarcity mindset – the abundance mindset – can help you transform everything from how you earn money to how you spend time.
What is an abundance mindset?
An abundance mindset is a belief that the world is full of resources and possibilities so there are enough opportunities for everyone to have all that they need and desire, says Jocelyn Michelle Reaves, CEO of a business consulting company Fireside Insights.
Someone with a scarcity mindset views money, resources, and success as a cake so If someone takes a big slice, there’s less left for you. “With this mindset, envy and jealousy are pervasive, and the accomplishments of others may be perceived as a personal indication of failure or lack,” Reaves adds.
An abundance mindset flips this idea around. “People with an abundance mindset believe there is more than enough to go around and that their success and happiness do not come at the expense of others,” says Dr. Lisa Turner, creator of CETfreedom, an emotional and spiritual healing program.
This mindset reduces the need to constantly compare and compete with your peers. It also alleviates the feeling of not having enough.
“Somebody who has a lack mindset will see what’s missing and complain about it, whereas somebody with an abundant mindset will see what is missing and work out how they can create it or achieve it,” Dr. Turner adds.
How to develop an abundance mindset?
Tired of hearing that you must say affirmations, build a vision board, and maintain a gratitude diary? Those things can certainly help but there’s a lot more you can try. There’s an abundance of ideas in the world!
Here are some techniques that actually work.
Question your beliefs
Think about these questions deeply.
- Did you grow up believing you must work hard to earn money?
- Do you think you would have to sacrifice a lot to live the life of your dreams?
- Do you find it difficult to even imagine yourself as wealthy?
- Do you think it’s wrong to want lots of money?
- Do you believe you have to “prove” yourself before you’re worthy of charging more?
Take a close look at your beliefs about generating wealth. Question if they’re really true.
- Do you really have to work yourself into a burnout to make money?
- Is your dream lifestyle really impossible?
- Does wanting money really make you a bad or greedy person?
- Will you really lose your job or clients if you ask for a raise or start charging more?
It can be challenging to believe you’re inherently worthy of abundance so many spiritual teachers use the analogy of the breath. You don’t have to worry about breathing because you know there will always be a next breath, says Vanessa Louise Moore, an emotional health coach.
You don’t have to hoard it or worry that others breathing too much is reducing the air available for you! Just bringing your awareness to the breath can help you tap into this inherent abundance.
Take inspiration from nature
Just like there’s always enough air for breathing, Moore suggests taking inspiration from nature to realize just how much abundance there is around you.
“Nature is the most exquisite example of abundance,” she says. “Without our help, nature continues to flow through the seasons, the sun rises and sets each day, the tide ebbs and flows, the animal kingdom goes about its day, and the trees and flowers continue to bloom.”
There’s no limit to how many birds or flowers exist, no fixed number of trees that can grow. The trees give away their fruits and flowers freely because there will always be more.
Understanding this flow of life can help you understand that you too are a part of this abundant nature and there are no real limits on what you can achieve or how much money you can make.
Play with your imagination
Many people deny their dreams as they fear they’re too big, perhaps impossible. That’s why affirmations like “I’m rich” can make you feel uneasy because you feel like you’re lying to yourself.
What if I told you that you don’t have to believe anything? Just play with your imagination.
What would you do if your wildest dreams were possible? You don’t have to believe it, you don’t have to say anything, just follow the what-if thoughts like you did as a kid.
Imagine you could get as much money as you want. What would you do? Would you quit your job and travel full-time? Would you pay off your debt? Would you buy that thing you’ve always wanted?
Playing make-believe as a kid is easy and fun because there’s no pressure. Things don’t have to turn out exactly as you imagined. You don’t have to believe or feel or manifest what you’re imagining. You’re just flexing your creative muscles and building stories in your head.
This gets you used to the idea of abundance and greatness. Eventually, it doesn’t feel as impossible or challenging.
The practice starts changing your relationship with money. You’re replacing the anxious scenarios in your head with fun imaginations.
The best part? It also creates room for ideas, one of which could actually lead to greatness and abundance!