7 ways to develop an abundance mindset

Have you ever been stuck in a negative rut, wondering why life’s debris is being hurled at you when you’ve already had enough and there’s no room for anymore? Most of us would say yes, I suspect, but how many of us can easily clamber out of that boggy mire and set ourselves back on track again? It’s all about mindset ...

The Scarcity Mindset:  

When we have a scarcity mindset, we feel like we don’t have enough, whether that be money, time or connections. Having a scarcity mindset can be a self-fulfilling prophecy though as when we believe we don’t have enough, guess what... we won’t. It can be difficult to move forward when we’re stuck this way and we may continue to have a scarcity mindset if we see no way out.

Signs you may have a scarcity mindset:
  • You always feel like you’re behind
  • Bills and other responsibilities pile up  
  • You cram too much into your free time
  • You say ‘yes’ to everything as you worry about missed opportunities
  • Little problems may feel overwhelming
How a scarcity mindset may affect you:
  • You may make hasty decisions without thinking through the consequences
  • You may have reduced cognitive ability due to your brain’s bandwidth being drained
  • Your self-care may suffer
  • You may be less productive at work
  • You will be more likely to cancel appointments/meet ups

When we have a scarcity mindset, our brains feel drained and the prefrontal cortex (the brain’s area responsible for decision making) struggles – rather like a computer that has too many tabs open - resulting in slower and more stressful, drawn-out decision making. When you are in this mindset, it is crucial to stop, (tricky as it may seem) practice self-care and top up your well of wellbeing. Now, let’s flip this on its head ...

The Abundance Mindset:

An abundance mindset is seeing the limitless potential in life. It means you can see the potential in yourself, and everyone around you. As a result, you can drive yourself towards creating the life you want.

When we have an abundance mindset, we have the opposite of the scarcity mindset – we feel more positive, we benefit from better brain function and adaptability. Our brains get a hit of dopamine when we take risks and complete tasks leading us to repeat this behaviour and strengthen our mindset.

‘The mind is everything. What you think, you become’.

How to shift from scarcity to abundance:

1.  Acceptance

In order to change where you are in life, you must accept that there is a need for change. By accepting this, you stop fighting against where you are now, thereby saving precious brain bandwidth

2. Self-compassion

Always be proud of what you’ve done so far in life. Be kind to yourself, talk to yourself as you would a dear friend or relative.

3.  Find that one thing

Maybe your finances and free time are abundant, maybe they’re not. Perhaps your pet loves you unconditionally or you have a fridge full of food. No matter how small, there will be at least one thing in your life right now that is abundant. Focus on that and be grateful for it.  

4. Define what abundance looks like for you

Similar to personal wellbeing, abundance can mean different things to everyone. What looks like abundance to you may look like scarcity to someone else. A good starting point is to ask yourself how it would feel to have abundance and what would your life look like if you did?

5. Start small

Changing all your habits and ways of thinking at the same time can be overwhelming so start small by making tweaks here and there. For example, if you’re always short of time, look at what is filling up your day and see what can be adjusted.  

6. Practice mindfulness

When we are in a scarcity mindset, our brains get wrapped up in constant processing of what to do next in order to survive. Taking some time to be mindful or meditating makes us pay attention to the moment which slows our brains down enabling us to think more clearly.  

7. Journaling

Simply jotting down five things you are grateful for each day really embeds a gratitude mindset; this can play a massive role in changing your mindset and help foster positivity. Once this has become habit, you can progress to writing more than just a list of what you’re grateful for.  

I’ve personal experience of this practice. I’ve spent time in a scarcity mindset, struggling to see any light at the end of the tunnel, scratching around for money for the weekly shop and battling with my mental health. But I have made the gradual transition to abundance by using the 7 tips listed above.  

The difference to my mental health, my finances and my wellbeing have been phenomenal and I’m now a true advocate of positive thinking and make sure I surround myself with like-minded people who help keep me on track. My well of wellbeing is topped up through living and breathing the 5 ways to wellbeing, enabling me to be creative, open-minded and sociable. Life at its best. I strongly urge you to give it a go.

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