Do you fear not having enough money? Are you scared about being poor?
This is common. Even people who don’t worry much about being poor, find they make decisions based on a monetary value rather than what they really want in life. This is why people work in jobs they don’t like, simply because it pays a certain amount of money.
The key to overcoming your fear of being poor is to change your perspective. The six ideas below help do just that.
1.) Abundance Is Not Just Money
Western society conditions us to think that to be abundant requires lots of money. It conditions us to buy material possessions. We think having things shows we are successful and gives us self-worth.
These are false beliefs. If we examine and change them, we can lead different lives.
Abundance comes in many forms. Sometimes the people who have the least feel the most abundant. That’s not to say that you can’t have money and be abundant. The important thing is to see and appreciate the things that you have in your life to truly feel abundant. People often think of how they can earn more money without fully appreciating the things they have that don’t have any monetary value. Here are some examples of things without monetary value that we can all appreciate and can make us feel abundant:
1.) Time: Money is an infinite resource. You can always make more money, but the time we have is limited. You can never get more time than what you’ve been allocated. Every moment that goes past is gone, never to be retrieved again. Don’t waste all your time chasing money. One day you’re going to die. Spend a moment every day contemplating that. If you were going to die tomorrow or next week, would you be doing what you are doing today? We all have the same 24 hours in a day while we are here. When we have and truly value time, we can feel abundant. It’s much more valuable than money.
2.) Connection: Connection is open to everybody. Most of us have family and friends we love and spend time with. However, even if you don’t have that, you can have a connection from a smile with a stranger. Or perhaps, a warm hello in a shop or cafe or a telephone call. Even if you have no friends to connect with, you can start volunteering or connecting with people at work. Do we appreciate the connections we already have? And can we connect more and deeper with people? True connection is open to everyone and is also abundant.
3.) Nature: The sun on your face. Walking outdoors. Looking at the birds. Admiring the plants, views and trees. Hans Christian Anderson said “The whole world is a series of miracles, but we’re so used to them we call them ordinary things”. Being in nature can be a huge reminder of that. And no matter how little money we have, the miracles of life continue to go on around us.
2.) Fear of Poverty Comes from a Mindset of Scarcity
We often fear being poor because we fear that there is a lack out there. We worry that we’ll lose our job or our business will fail, so we’ll lose our income. Why do we worry? We worry that the money will stop and we won’t be able to earn any more. Our minds can then go on a downward spiral until in our heads we are homeless on the streets and can’t afford shelter or food, even though that’s not our reality. Or we think of some other equally disastrous scenario.
We need to ask ourselves, is what we are thinking really true?
If you lose your job, there are many other jobs out there. There are many ways to make money through business and side hustles. Money is not in lack. It may not be the job you expect, but it could be the job that you need. It may require learning new skills or changing your life in some way but this can be a good thing. Changing our life may bring even more abundance, opportunities and growth.
3.) Change Your Scarcity Mindset to One of Abudance
So how do you change your mindset from one of scarcity to one of abundance?
There are a few ways to do this.
The first one is to become aware of all the forms of abundance that come to you in your life.
Spend a week noting down all the things that arrive in your life. They could be of monetary value – a coin you find on the floor or an unexpected windfall. If you think there will be nothing of monetary value, go looking for it. It could be in the form of coins you find down the side of your couch. Perhaps there’s a gift card you haven’t spent, that’s lying forgotten in a draw. Are there any loyalty awards you haven’t claimed? Or perhaps there’s some unforgotten money in a bank account. No matter how small, look and find it and write it down. Also, this week note down anything that makes you feel abundant. Perhaps somebody bought you a coffee? Or looked after your kids for an hour. Maybe you went for a walk with a friend and felt the warmth and connection in your life. Did somebody send you a text that made you feel valued?
The universe is abundant. We rarely take time to notice how abundant the universe is. Therefore, we don’t take up the abundance that’s often staring us in the face. Take a notepad and spend a week writing all the things you receive. You’ll be amazed how much.
Do this exercise now to feel abundance right away.
Write 50 Things That You Have In Your Life That Make You Feel Abundant. Here are some examples: Your family, friends, walking outside, the Internet, having access to all the Youtube video, your home, the ability to spend 30 minutes reading a book, Netflix, water running from the tap, your car, food you eat, watching a sunset, looking at the stars, a kiss. a hug…
Be Prepared to Receive
We often don’t receive what’s out there because we’re not open to it. Make sure you take time to receive what is given to you.
Here are some examples of how to start to do this:
Practice accepting offers and saying thank-you. If somebody gives you a compliment, make sure you accept it and say thank you. If somebody offers to buy you a coffee, say yes please! If a family member offers to help, let them. Don’t prevent other people from having the gift of giving something to you.
You’ll find the more you receive, the more you’ll end up being given to you. People are less likely to offer to give to people who they think will refuse their gift. People like to give. The more you’re open to receiving, the more you’re likely to receive.
Take time to appreciate everything you have in your life. This may a moment that you take just to feel gratitude for something. Or you could write a gratitude journal and list three things that you are thankful for every day
Partaking in these practices will make you see the amount of money in your bank account is irrelevant. There is always something you have to be grateful for.
The universe is an abundant place if we are aware of it, able to receive and are thankful for what we have.
4.) Placing Immense Value On Money Can Make You Have a Miserable Life.
In our society, people are so focused on having money that they value it above everything else. People base life decisions on money rather than other values, such as time. Here are some examples:
1.) Working 40 plus hours in a job you don’t like for the whole of your working lives because the salary is good.
2.) Not starting the business or working on a passion because they need to work in a job to pay the mortgage.
3.) Not traveling because they can’t afford it.
I know people will read this and think “well, I have to pay the mortgage”, “I need a roof over my head and to feed my kids” so I need that 40 hour a week job.
The truth is that these are just beliefs, there is always another way. Here are some possible solutions:
1.) Living in a smaller house so you don’t have to work all the hours to pay a big mortgage.
2.) Traveling on a budget and creating an income stream that lets you earn money as you travel (the Internet offers this up for so many careers).
3.) Saving and training to do a job or start a business you’d really love to do.
There are many people that live lives like this. There is no reason you can’t be one of them. When you don’t put money first, new ways of life become possible on so many levels. The solutions above may not work for everybody, but when money doesn’t factor as top on your list of priorities, other solutions of how to live appear.
5.) Poverty is a great teacher
Obviously, nobody wants to be poor. This article isn’t to say money is bad, just that fear of poverty and placing too high a priority on money can lead to a smaller kind of life.
However, to get over any fear it’s always worth considering the worst-case scenario.
I have been in a place in my life where money was scarce. Here are some lessons I learned:
1.) You will survive. You will get through and get stronger.
2.) You won’t be poor forever. People lose their jobs and money. But with focus and determination, this won’t be the case forever. You will change your circumstances.
3.) You learn new skills. Like how to cook on a small budget. How to make do with less. How to appreciate the little things.
4.) You learn to value everything you have and will value the rest, even more, when it arrives again. (And it will!)
5.) Abundance is everywhere.
6.) People who are also in poverty are often the most giving.
The lessons you learn may be different from mine, but even imagining being poor can help you see the world from a new, more positive viewpoint.
Do this exercise to see poverty from a new perspective.
Imagine you are poor and take time to write 10 lessons that poverty can teach you. Being poor can help you see the world from a new and fresh perspective. You may find that poverty can teach you so much and that in fact it isn’t the worse thing that could happen. Values such as empathy, community and self resilience are some possible growth lessons.
6.) Fear of Poverty Is a Lack of Trust In Yourself
Ask yourself this question. If you lost all your money tomorrow, what would you do?
You’d go out and get yourself a new job, or start a new business, or sell your clothes on eBay or downsize, get the bus instead of the car.
Whatever it would be, you’d manage, right?
At the end of the day, to get rid of the fear of poverty, you need to build a deeper trust in yourself. You need to believe that you would cope. That you would work it out. And eventually, you’d get yourself out of poverty.
If you’re scared of being poor, you need to build trust that you’ll handle whatever comes your way. Try the exercises below to see the possibilities that could be open to you if you lose money.
Four Exercises To Build Belief That You Could Handle Poverty
1.) Create a plan. Write a list of what you’d be able to do to deal with the situation.
2.) Write a list of ways you could earn money if you really needed to. What jobs could you get? What could you sell? What side hustle could you start?
3.) Write a list of 50 assets you have available to you and how you could use them to create a job or income if you were poor. For example, LinkedIn (through creating connections and networking), YouTube (learn new skills or make videos), your home (rent a room), dog walking skills (to build a dog walking business), Mom friends (to sell Avon to), handyman or cleaning skills (to build a business) etc.
4.) Read this article by Mr Money Mustache on 50 jobs you can do to earn $50 000 without a degree.
Being prepared if the situation were to arrive would help you deal with those gut-wrenching moments you have when you feel deep fear of losing it all and becoming poor. Deep down you’d know you would handle it!
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