Today, do you choose to live in fear, anxiety, and worry? Or, are you able to flip that and lean into freedom, abundance, and worth?
Some days I do better than others as I walk confidently in freedom and abundance, and I claim my worth. But some days, holy sh*t, I just can’t do it.
Why would I admit to this in a blog? Because each one of us—no matter who we are—needs the space to be real, transparent, and authentic. Most people don’t see the can’t-do-it moments in my life because that’s not always who I want to present to the world. There are plenty of days that the fear, anxiety, and worry take over. Yes, I’m not afraid to acknowledge that I have real emotional struggles.
This winter, a very dear friend of mine’s parents had a difficult journey with their health. Through this journey, my friend’s father, who has always been a pillar of strength to his family, friends, church, and community, started dealing with emotions he had not dealt with in his 80+ years.
After living a stoic life, emotions around fear, anxiety, and worry bubbled up and seemingly took over every aspect of his life. At times, it was overwhelming for everyone, especially my friend, as they tried to help him navigate through his pain and grief. Then one day, my friend sent me a picture where his dad had written “ABUNDANCE!” on an index card. Somehow my friend’s dad had shifted the narrative that was swirling in his head.
Stephen Covey addresses the dichotomy between scarcity and abundance in his bestselling book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Here’s what he says about scarcity:
“The Scarcity Mentality is the zero-sum paradigm of life. People with a Scarcity Mentality have a very difficult time sharing recognition and credit, power or profit—even with those who help in the production.”
This type of mindset focuses on the short term and creates a state of sadness and jealousy. It’s the “Why Me?” syndrome.
At the other end of the spectrum, Covey explains abundance like this:
“The Abundance Mentality, on the other hand, flows out of a deep inner sense of personal worth and security. It is the paradigm that there is plenty out there and enough to spare for everybody. It results in sharing of prestige, of recognition, of profits, of decision-making. It opens possibilities, options, alternatives, and creativity.”
The abundance mentality focuses on the long term. It also creates positive feelings towards others. In my world, this mindset is rooted in generosity and #disruptivegiving.
At this point, you may be wondering how to make this shift because, let’s be honest, when we’re living in the grip of fear, anxiety, and worry, we can’t always see the way out. For me, it begins with the big first step of deciding that you’re going to live differently and then surrounding yourself with the people and resources needed to support you in your journey.
Here are three tips to get you moving in the right direction:
- Give Generously. No matter how much or little you have, living in generosity opens your mind and heart to the goodness in the world. Generosity doesn’t always need to involve money. Rather, it’s a mindset of focusing on the needs of others, which could include something as simple as making a phone call to someone who is lonely.
- Show Appreciation. Pausing to consider the blessings in your life (instead of dwelling on the negatives) leads to a life of appreciation. Showing appreciation includes making time to express gratitude to people and situations in your life, even if that just means closing your eyes and saying “thank you” a few times each day.
- Stay Positive. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by negativity. When negative thoughts and ideas get in your head, it’s important to stop, acknowledge what’s happening, and then put as much emotional energy as possible into focusing on freedom, abundance, and worth.
I know times are difficult right now, but we’re all in this together. If you’re struggling, please reach out to me (or someone else you trust). I look forward to doing whatever I can to help you.
Your Truth Teller,
Shawn “Man On Fire” Nason