It’s a new year, and you’d think that most of our money problems are gone by now. But as is true for many things, we haven’t learned how to balance money and spirituality – we are often picking one over the other. I’ve been doing this myself, in many ways, which is why I want to talk about the abundance mindset, and how you can experience more contentment.
Different Ways Your Relationship With Money Might Be Blocking Your Growth
Let’s address the different money blocks we have, and how we can adapt a more holistic, mindset of abundance.
Note that you may not relate to all the ways of thinking below, but if there are areas which stand out to you, focus on those as potential spaces to heal your relationship with money.
#1 – You might think money is BAD.
Of course, nobody admits it. But we have been rewired to believe this. How?
This will subconsciously appear in your behavior as feeling guilty every time you spend ‘too much’ on something that wasn’t essential. Or, being unable to charge a fair price to others for your services (something even more common in the spiritual space).
In essence, many of us are taught to believe that wanting money is materialistic and shallow, and we begin to act out of that mindset.
However, the idea that money is bad for us is a winded-up interpretation of why spiritual seekers renounce their lifestyles and setup such stringent self-restraint parameters.
Money and all material pleasures are temporary in nature. They’re just as essential as we make them to be.
For instance, the recent turn in events has taught us that we can still adapt and thrive with less parties, less shopping and less traveling.
However, most people act throughout their lives on autopilot. In such cases, it’s easy for us to become too tunnel-visioned and look at the material world as our only reality.
At the end of the day, money is energy, just like the things you buy with that money. And energy is neutral. It’s what intention we apply to it, that makes energy beneficial or counterintuitive to our growth.
Are you using that money to take care of your needs? Or to fuel the endless flame of wants? Think about it.
#2 – You Might Think It Requires Hard Work To Earn Something.
We’ve already established that just like everything else, money is energy. We are willing to spend a lot of energy in the form of time and labor, but we are unwilling to open up to receiving the energy back.
Don’t believe me? Here are some examples.
- You feel shy or say no to people when they give you a “gift”,
- Random acts of kindness towards you make you question “what did I do to deserve this”,
- Compliments make you awkward (but secretly happy),
- Relationships require a lot of hard work, and the easy ones are probably not going to last so you end up sabotaging them,
- You’re constantly putting in blood and sweat to make things work in your life.
Money is just one form of abundance. And just like money, at the receiving end, we often question whether we worked hard enough to really deserve something (or someone). This is a simple way to realize that we are imbalanced and have an unhealthy relationship with money.
If we keep questioning our efforts, we will automatically become workaholics, trying to overcompensate by putting in more energy than we allow to come our way.
As you do this, you end up working twice as hard as everyone and (usually) being low on time, low on satisfaction and low on self-esteem. You are basically fighting against yourself, and blocking your own destiny.
Ask yourself why you deserve so little, and what would happen if you really gave permission to live a more fulfilling and abundant life.
#3 – You Think Money Is The Deciding Factor For Success.
This is me. Or rather, it was. When this blog began to kick-off after a few years, I started worrying more than I should have, about the success of it.
Ironically, I wasn’t doing any of this for the money, but for some reason, I was ingrained with the belief that I wasn’t successful if I wasn’t earning six or seven figures.
This is where the abundance mindset can be our saving grace. In what other ways are you growing in life? For me, some of these looked like –
- More and more people trusting me with their stories,
- Amazing online mentors that keep popping up and helping the blog grow with their awesome advice,
- Higher quality collaborations and more diverse opportunities,
- Getting more genuine feedback for the work I was doing,
- Noticing a momentum in my own growth, as I continue to push through my limiting beliefs about myself,
- Being able to serve a bigger demographic from around the world and learning from such a diverse group of people,
- And so on.
The fact is, our soul cannot be satisfied with merely financial support. We crave community, we crave love, we crave the human touch in whatever we are doing.
If all your monetary needs were taken care of, would you still be so fixated on money as a defining factor for success? Or would you be able to sit back and appreciate all the other signs of growth that have followed you?
The abundance mindset encourages us to look beyond the green bills, and be grateful for every form of support that the Universe is sending to us. What are some of the ways in which the Universe has been cheering you on? Think about it.
4 Practical Tips to Adopt The Abundance Mindset & Heal Your Relationship With Money
Perhaps the ancient people understood the law of cause and effect much better than we do, having developed the barter system so long ago. For instance, you could buy a pack of rice and give the seller a tin of milk in return. Eventually, more formal ways were decided to equalize the exchange of material goods.
As consumerism began spreading, and then exploding, it became imperative to run the rat race in order to fit into society.
There were only a select set of people who could stay happy with very little. The others had become caught up, and chasing the material goods was so inherent, that we all forgot why were doing this in the first place.
Long story short, we’ve been living in a time where there’s an excess of all things, and a shortage of time. That’s why, once again, we are being asked to become picky about what our time is worth. Would you rather spend that hour watching a chic-flick, or reading the latest Obama book? Both choices are tempting, but the time to do them is limited.
Just like time can be an asset or a liability, so can money. The renunciate, a monk doesn’t want to bother about making everyday choices and handle more emotional baggage. And hence she frees herself of all worldly shackles.
How can you be a modern monk and renounce materialism in a practical way? By freeing yourself of certain decisions. Adapt the renunciate’s mindset with a win-win approach. Here are some ideas worth pondering upon.
Tip #1 – Minimizing time & money spent on your outer appearance.
Businessmen like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg have fixed wardrobes, wearing the same attire day-in and day-out to save themselves the hassle of worrying about what to wear, and how often to buy new clothes for their wardrobe.
This isn’t very different from what any monk does. The less you invest in shopping and picking your daily wardrobe, the more time you have to focus on your higher goals.
Tip #2 – Minimize time & money spent on consumption.
I don’t just mean food. I mean information too. The more we input, the more we are forced to output.
Our ability to actually process information, to digest and internalize it has become limited, thus robbing us form the present moment.
The less you consume, the more time you have to focus on what matters in the long run. You are no longer scattered, and you are able to concentrate your energy onto actually achieving the goals you have set.
And of course, you spend less. 🙂
Tip #3 – Understand the Law of Abundance.
If we have needs, the Universe will take care of them. That’s something that we need to grasp. How? Understand the law of abundace.
The first aspect of this law, is that the Universe will find the shortest route to get something you need to you.
If you are not sure that something has been divinely sent to you, ask for signs. I always enjoy sharing this example about asking the Universe for parking space and noticing a car reverse to vacate a spot, the moment I arrive.
There are many such ways in which the Universe shows up for us. We only need to keep asking, keep trusting, and keep receiving.
The second aspect, is that there is no lack in the Universe.
You don’t need to wait because it’s somebody else’s turn to receive today.
You also don’t need to want less so that the others can have a share. There is enough for everyone, including YOU.
And third, is that the Universe is always giving.
We only need to be ready to receive.
The resource may not come to you in the way you thought it will. It may not be instant gratification, but you will see instant guidance.
For instance, if you want a fancy car, the Universe may not give you the next lottery ticket. But it might land you in an awesome job, that let’s you comfortably afford that car. But, how will you get the car, if you don’t apply for a new job?
There are hundreds of ways in which the divine forces conspire to bring us closer to our dreams – keep your eyes and ears open and when you notice something, don’t hesitate to walk on those suggestions.
At times, our ego-mind will get in the way and make us think it was “by chance”. Don’t let such limiting beliefs sabotage your growth!
Tip #4 – Move away from money.
I’m not trying to be philosophical and suggest something like you attract what you don’t need anymore. But remember my example from before, being driven by numbers? It became obsessive and that’s how I would show up in conversations.
If you’re struggling with money, you’re likely to be doing the same. Finding ways to earn more, in every, single, thing you do. Even in the most basic conversations. No matter what we do to hide our thoughts, we can’t mask our mindset entirely. In some form or the other, it becomes evident.
Observe the ways in which money limits your vision of life, ways in which you are not nurturing the abundance mindset. And then, ask yourself questions that can steer you in a different direction, such as,
- What are the ways in which I feel enriched and alive, independent of money?
(think compliments, opportunities, healthy friendships, and so on)
- Who can I look up to and follow, to accelerate my growth? What are some of their qualities I can embody?
(you will notice that being rich is not a quality, perseverance or patience would be)
- What do I already have, that I am very grateful for?
(think, if something you didn’t count as a blessing was taken away from you today, how you would feel)
Do what you can, to bring money down from the pedestal and put it in its actual place. When we are able to move beyond the primal goals, we can focus on actual growth.
Spirituality is not separate from money, and you can’t really do much in today’s day and age if you keep letting finances hold you back.
The modern monk’s goal isn’t to live a frugal life full trying to immunize herself of the ‘maya jaal‘ (illusory trap). Rather to have intelligent self-control and to use these very materials to achieve their spiritual goals.
Use money as a gateway to your success, not as the end goal. Allow yourself to step back from societal notions, and look at the bigger picture. Focus on the real end goal.
Focus on attaining enlightenment. 🙂
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