Overcome the Scarcity Mindset
Scarcity mindset, what is it? For me, it means the fear of not having enough. For years I have struggled with a scarcity mindset. Struggled with the process of changing my mindset, as well as my financial blueprint.
Recently, I came across an article about a man, his son and the game Trouble. In the article, the man talks about his son’s emotional roller coast during the game. As I was reading the article, I could so relate to what this guy was saying because I have had similar experiences when playing with my 7 year old grandson. When he’s winning all is right with the world; but as soon as he starts to lose….you’re a cheater or he makes some other excuse. Just like the man’s son, he’s so attached to the outcome that he isn’t really enjoying the experience. It’s just a game. A time for family to come together and have some fun; but in quite a few instances our fun is overshadowed by the trash talking, the excuses and/or the pouting.
The man was using the story of playing Trouble as a metaphor. Comparing the game of trouble to life’s money game. How many of us have a similar experience when dealing with our finances? Constantly stressing over the lack of money. Or, we are unable to enjoy our windfalls because we are anticipating or preparing for another setback.
Typically these thoughts are related to our “money story”. The stories we tell ourselves over and over again. Or, the story we continue to tell others. I remember the time I filed bankruptcy. I remember when I lost my house. Oh, I remember when we didn’t have food on the table. Whatever your money story, it’s time to let it go. It’s time to tell a new “money story”. One with a happy ending. Tell a story where the plot doesn’t revolve around scarcity mindset. Tell a money story centering around an abundance mindset. The time you found $3 while walking to the store. Or, the time the restaurant gave you and your family a free dinner.
Oh, my bad, I digrest. Back to the game of Trouble and how it relates to our money story…..
“If you play the money game scared, you’ll tend to do very poorly. If you’re worried about losing your pieces (i.e. your money), you’ll play the game way too tight. But if you see it as a fun game, you’ll loosen up, and you’ll feel more comfortable playing in a larger field.
Money needn’t be a stressful or worrisome part of your life if you treat the money game as a fun growth experience. If you don’t take your financial life so seriously, you can learn to enjoy the process of shifting from a scarcity mindset to an abundance mindset. There’s no mandate that says you must stress yourself out about money, regardless of your current financial situation.”*
As I read the article I thought to myself, this is so true. I’m playing the money game too tight. I need to loosen up my grip. Get in where I fit in. Enjoy life experiences. For years my financial hardships resulted in me walking the same road over and over again. Until one day, I asked myself ….. At what point are you going to do something different? At what point are you going to move in the direction of your dreams?
Even though I know the answer to those two questions should be NOW, I’ m not taking any action to move forward. I truly believe in the concept….Thoughts create Feelings, Feelings create Action….Action creates Results. So, I know that I need to shift my thoughts. Change my mindset because I have reverted back to a scarcity mindset. It’s becoming difficult to see myself outside of my current circumstances.
For a few days, I stressed over what I should do. The harder I tried to come up with a plan the more stuck I felt until one day while taking my morning walk something spoke to me and said…..be still. So I did just that. I allowed myself to be still. A few days later I awoke to the idea of playing the Prosperity Game. I played this game a few years ago; and, at that time, the game helped me to shift my thoughts from lack, scarcity mindset to prosperity and abundance mindset.
This became my new plan. Although I have seen blog posts and articles written about continuing the game for 365 days (approximately $66 million), I personally haven’t played for that length of time. Truth be told, I don’t have the attention span. In the past, I played for 30 days and that’s my goal this time around too. At the end of my 30 day spending spree, I should have spent $465,000. That’s quite a bit of money. My intention for the next 30 days…..enjoy the spending spree. Let my imagination run wild. Feel joy and peace of mind. Acknowledge and accept that there is enough money to go around.
The last time I played this game, I kept track of my spending on a pdf document. I like to compare my daily spending habits. It was interesting to see how my spending evolved. The more money I had, the more generous I became. The more imaginative I became. The feeling of waking up every morning with my bank account full of cash …PRICELESS. I stepped out of bed each day with two specific goals (1) spend all of my cash and (2) have a good time doing it.
* Although his website states all of his articles are public domain, I’m providing a link to the website StevePavlina.com
How to play the Prosperity Game
Find an old check register, use a notebook or excel spreadsheet.
Day 1 – Make a deposit for $1,000 into your prosperity checking account.
Record the check number and/or debit purchase in your register. When I play, in addition to the payee/vendor, I make a notation/memo about what I purchased.
You can spend the money on one item or many. The goal is to spend the money freely and spend all of the money on the day it is deposited. Visualize yourself enjoying your purchase. Experience the emotion of your spending spree. Have fun because the next day, there is more of where that came from.
Day 2 – $2000
Day 3 – $3000
And so on. Keep playing until your scarcity mindset is gone. You are no longer focusing on lack, scarcity and/or neediness. Now start rewriting your money story to focus on joy, giving, abundance and prosperity.
New Mindset > New Story > New Life Experiences
Remember – it isn’t just about writing numbers on a piece of paper. You have to attach emotion to the process. Allow yourself to feel happy, joyful, excited etc