Abundance vs. Scarcity Mindset

You might have heard of people talking about abundance or an abundance mindset, but most people don’t know what the inverse, scarcity mindset. So what is this and how can it be helpful to improving your life?

 The  Abundance  Mindset

The reason we call this the abundance mindset is because the philosophy is that the universe and on a more literal, the economy, has enough resources for everyone in ample supply. In a world where there are billionaires and people dying from poverty in the same country, this can be hard to believe. When you operate from an abundance mindset, you might find that anxiety over money decreases because you trust that it will come. Also, for some unknown reason someone who is more energy- or spiritual-based than I can explain better, when you operate from this mindset, you will find the universe abides, especially if you’re more generous with others.

The Scarcity Mindset

In contrast to the abundant mindset, the philosophy behind the scarcity mindset is that there is not enough resources for everyone, so people are in direct competition for these resources. This mindset makes TOTAL sense given our roots of being scavengers or hunters and competing with others for berries/animals and more recently, after the great depression. If your family lived in this country for the great depression, you might start to pick up on attitudes that are passed on, such as “lick your plate clean.” The scarcity mindset is a result of fear of not having enough, which can limit people in their choices and make them less willing to take risks that can pay off in greater reward. For example, you might choose a field of work you don’t like just so you have secure employment rather than following your passion and trusting you will make it work.

Tips for Cultivating an Abundant Mindset

Here are some tips from an article on chopra.com (summarized by me, but check out the article for MUCH more detail and awesome links):

1. Become Aware of Your Thoughts:ask yourself, “Are my thoughts about this based in fear and scarcity?”

2. Practice Gratitude: aim to write down at least 10 things per day that you’re grateful for and try to include a positive trait about your character, i.e. “I am grateful that I persevere”

3. Recognize the Unlimited Possibilities: Try a meditation and bonus if it deals with abundance. Insight Timer is a great app with lots of free guided meditations.

4. Cultivate and Share Your Passions and Purpose: Write down what your goals are and why they are important and/or tell a friend. Getting them out of your head and into the real world, even in small ways, can make them more real.

5. Develop Mastery Experiences: Come up with a goal you have that you’d like to work toward or master. Then break this goal down into smaller steps that you can actually do.

6. Watch What You Say: Notice when you are talking to a person in your life and watch for what stories you’re telling: are they abundant or scarce?

7. Concentrate on Growth: Ask others around you, ideally one person a day, what their goals are and how they are working toward accomplishing them. Even if they are working toward something completely different, you can learn a lot from others’ style, attitude and approach to their own growth toward goals.

8. Think Like a Beginner: We tend to associate not knowing with failure, but the greatest experts had to start somewhere.

9. Focus on What Is Going Right: Our brains our wired to survive and thus, focusing on what’s wrong is an evolutionary function that doesn’t always serve us. Simply ask yourself, “what is going right for me?” when you find yourself fixating on the negative.

10. Create Abundance Affirmations: Write down your fears on a piece of paper, then write the opposite of those fears or what you desire in the other column. Put these where you can see them or write them on a piece of paper you stick in your pocket and look at throughout the day.

Abundantly yours,

Caitlin Bovard is a Mental Health Counselor in Broomfield, CO that specializes in sex, gender, relationships and LGBTQ+ counseling.

This image is a nice summary of how you can detect which mindset you are using at the moment.

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