Living abundantly can mean what ever you want. It is what ever brings you joy. Sometimes living frugally can be hard and a grind, even now when I am retired. Saving money and living sustainably is definitely not easy, and so we all need things that make our life feel ‘full’, and make the day feel like we are not just existing. I used to feel like I was just on a treadmill when I worked, shopped and slept, fitting in only a small amount of time with my family. There was definitely no time for hobbies, friendships, or even relationships. I had two children to provide for on my own. This definitely wasn’t living abundantly, or my best life. Now I make time for what brings me joy.
It is hard to explain abundance as it means something different to us all, but it is the opposite of lacking, emptiness, deprivation and dissatisfaction. I suppose it is feeling fulfilled in body, spirit and in mind. It is not dependent on outside influences, or other people’s opinions, but is what feels good for us. For me, time with family, nature, hobbies, achieving new skills bring me the feeling of abundance. For others it may be things like pets, travelling or friends etc.
Mindset is the main thing that helps some one feel abundance. The way that you see yourself and the world around you impacts on the way that you behave and experience life. If you you have a mindset based on scarcity you will compete, be stressed, gossip, be judgemental, put other people down, be jealous and destructive. If your mindset is based on abundance you will be grateful, feel empowered, have clarity, feel more relaxed and as if you have choices, share, accept, be kind, encourage, feel secure and wish the best for every one.
Mindfulness helped me. I started to notice my thoughts when they were negative and not helping me. Keeping a journal helped me explore the origins of my thoughts and how I could change them from scarcity to abundance, and how I could reduce the fear. I dealt with my shadows and my confidence increased. A daily gratitude exercise provided awareness and helped me notice at least 5 things that had brought me joy or had gone well the day before. Spending time in nature and photographing the wonderful world around me improved my mindfulness.
Sharing my passion and building a community of like minded people has also helped as in real life I am pushing against the norm and rejecting a lot of what I have been taught brings joy, satisfaction and status. My car, small house, second hand clothes and frugal lifestyle is seen as a failure to those whom base success on consumerism, and only scratch the surface and take a snapshot of my life. However, I know that finding joy every day is a measure of success that I would rather use, and that I seek in other people.
I also know that I have far more skills and knowledge now than when I had a job with status, and my goal of improving myself by 1% every month means that I will grow more in every way and become a happier person. I also know what my values are and what is important to me. The most vital part of my journey was working that out.
The foundations of an abundant life are built on being curious, learning and growth. This brings stimulation, interest and improvement in mindset. An abundant mindset does not just happen. Like anything worth getting in life it takes practice, failure in order to learn, increased awareness, vulnerability, and consistent action. What are you doing today to improve your abundant mindset and can you recognise any behaviours creeping in that do not align with the abundant life you want? I know I sabotage myself sometimes, and then I have to journal and ask myself why?
My hope is that you can all find abundance in your lives and share this joy with the people around you. The world will then become a better and simpler place to live, and enjoy.