My son’s 17th birthday came and went this past weekend, and it gave me pause to reflect – where have the last 17 years gone – four of them since his mother passed. I feel good about how the most recent four years have been spent, but I couldn’t always say that. I used to seemingly live for work, allowing it to define who I was and losing sight of what really mattered. For me, the wake-up call was when the ER doctor told me my wife had had 6 strokes – I could feel the world come to a screeching halt as my priorities shifted.
It’s too easy to develop and live with a scarcity mentality. Convincing yourself there’s not enough time, or it’s not worth the effort so why bother. This comes into play in all aspects of our lives – as friends, spouses, and parents – to name a few roles. Some of it I think comes from fear, fear of the unknown and fear of failure. After all, if we don’t try then we can’t fail – and nobody can fault us. After all, we’re busy – we have careers and families that take all our time. But do they? Are we really “present”, or are we going through the motions? Marshaling our energy for when it’s truly needed, for that “thing” that really matters. But how many of us follow through and let go?
Living abundantly isn’t about spending thousands of dollars for the lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of, it’s about making the lifestyle you have align with those dreams and celebrating what you’re doing as you do it. It’s about shifting your perspective, instead of complaining about what’s not going well, celebrate what is. I’m not suggesting turning a blind eye to all of life’s negativity, but understand it’s going to be there whether you celebrate the good or not, so why let it anchor you down.
Make time for those in your life that mean the most to you. Do it for yourself, as a way of saying thank you for everything they’ve done for you. Accept life has challenges, and sometimes it feels like they’ve gotten the best of you. By having an abundant mentality you won’t have to force yourself to get out of bed to face the day when this happens; instead you’ll be eager to get up to put it behind you – because you KNOW you’re going to be successful.
That’s the key – believe in yourself. Realize that although there are only so many hours in the day, you control them. Days only feel longer when you focus on what you don’t think you can do or make excuses. Give yourself permission not to have all the answers, while forcing yourself to find someone who can provide those you don’t have. Eventually it’ll become second nature and your “bad” days become more like a bumpy road than a brick wall.