“There’s no doubt we live in abundant times," I remarked.
My friend looked at me with a tilt of her head. “Really?” she quizzed, “Have you come into some extra money?”
“No,” I laughed, “but what makes you think abundance only relates to money?”
As I took a walk in the park following this conversation, I reflected on what abundance actually means to me and the forms of abundance all around us.
It was an early spring day, and I couldn't help but marvel at the abundance provided by Mother Nature – the long luscious green grass, lemon trees bursting with fruit, cows and sheep grazing the land, poppies of every colour in full bloom.
As human beings we are gifted with abundance in many ways. Only, we don't always see it.
Creativity and Abundance
Take for example the abundance of creativity we have within us. The ability of the human brain to problem solve and come up with new ideas. Human potential for innovation is limitless – just look at all the everyday examples around you – the mobile phone, the car, the microwave. All examples of human ingenuity. I have come to realise that by asking ourselves “How can we make X happen?” we stretch our capabilities and harness untapped resources*.
Present day lifestyles are also abundant, when compared to the lives of people 100 years ago. At least in the Western world where we have access to clean water, nutritious food, and some form of shelter and warmth.
But so many of us relate their feeling of abundance to having money.
To me, abundance has nothing to do with monetary wealth. This was evident to me on a recent trip back to my country of birth - Sri Lanka. As I stood outside a little shack that sold food, a group of young girls from the local village passed by. They were around 7 or 8 years old, and as I tried to figure out what drink would best quench my thirst, I let them into the line so they could be served before me.
They said a shy hello, flashes of pearly white teeth behind their beautiful smiles, as they placed a rupee down on the counter and ordered a snack of boiled corn that was sitting in the sun. I don’t know how long the corn had been there for, but it didn’t look fresh!
My Sinhalese is seriously limited, so I asked the shop owner if he could ask them if they would like drink or something cold to have, my treat. He did. The girls looked a little uncomfortable at first, but then nodded, and pointed at the cold packs of Milo in the tiny refrigerator. They thanked me and left, so grateful for their little treat – a treat that cost me less than a packet of salt and vinegar chips at home!
These girls may not have felt abundant in terms of material goods and access to resources, but their smiles revealed another form of abundance – that which we have when we are fully connected to our well-being and in a state of peace, joy and love.
Each day, by feeling a sense of gratitude for what we have, we come to realise how much abundance surrounds us and how generous this world really is.
For me, true abundance is being in touch with your innate sense of well-being, your endless creativity, your connection to others, and to the bounty provided by Mother Nature. Not the amount of dollars in your bank account.
* As a coach, asking my clients "How can they make XXX happen" is an important question when they feel a bit stuck. Simply posing the question, and allowing time to think, generates creative solutions to problems they may have battled with for some time.
Contact me and see how coaching can get you in touch with your well-being and innate abundance.