Our brains are programmed to notice problems in order to ensure our survival. So they are always on the lookout for the ways we don't have enough—sometimes all we can see is our lack and deficiency.
It seems like there is never enough time or money or energy or resources. We think our lives are less somehow and we know that we will never personally measure up and be "enough."
It turns out that lack and deficiency in any area of our lives is only a thought. It's only an opinion and it's just one way of seeing the world. We just happen to think these thoughts are true! This is because our brain believes two things:
1. Resources are finite and there is never enough
2. More is always better
But what if we're wrong about both of these things? What if we've always had more than enough, an abundance of everything we need and we just haven't recognized this truth?
Abundance is totally available to every one of us, no matter our circumstances, because abundance is also just a thought—a way of looking at our lives. You just have to choose to see it…and that my friends is 100% awesome.
TRANSCRIPT OF EPISODE 21 "HOW TO HAVE ENOUGH AND BE ENOUGH"
Hello podcast universe! Welcome to Episode 21 of the 100% Awesome Podcast. I'm April Price and I'm so excited that you are here with me. Thank you to all of you who have left reviews and ratings for the podcast. I am so grateful for your feedback and support. I have the very best listeners in the world and I think you are all 100% awesome for subscribing and sharing the podcast.
I also just want to put a plug in to encourage you all to sign up for a free coaching session. There are less than 100 days before the end of the year and before the end of the decade. So if there are things in your life that you've been wanting to do differently, goals you want to reach, people that you want to learn to love in a deeper way, this is the perfect time to sign up for coaching and see where your own thoughts may be keeping you from the things you really want most. Imagine going into the holidays and the new year with an entirely new perspective about your life and your possibilities and potential. So if that's of interest to you, I encourage you to sign up and I'll take really good care of you.
OK so today on the podcast we're going to be talking about the powerful idea of abundance and how to shift our mindset from noticing all the deficiency and lack in our lives and be able to discover the true abundance that is already there.
And so to introduce this I want to share something that happened to me the other day. So on Friday I went to the chiropractor and I love my chiropractor and he asked me, "So how are you?" And I said, "Well it's September," as if that was the answer to the question.
And so I need to give you a little bit of background. So those of you who get my weekly email already know this about me. (Hey. P.S. If you're not signed up to get my e-mails you totally should. You can go to my website and sign up.) But anyway September is not my favorite month to live in Arizona. While the rest of the country is cooling down. Arizona is still hot and my brain likes to point out how unfair this is and how wrong this is and how I am getting a raw deal in my life.
And so I said, " Well it's September." As if that was all he needed to know right. I am a little bit miserable in September. And then he said, "Oh I know this is my favorite time of year." And I was like, What are you talking about? I had never, ever, ever had the thought that September was my favorite time of year in Arizona. And so this made me really curious.
What was I not seeing that he was obviously seeing? And I said, "What do you mean?" And he went on to tell me how amazing this time of year is when it's hot during the day and it's cooler at night and how the plants just get so happy when it starts to cool off at night. And they just start to bloom and open and come back to life. And he said then all the hummingbirds come out and he's like, "My whole yard is just the happiest place." And he said, "You can actually just feel the joy in the world."
Like what? Right? I see no joy in the world. All I can see is desolation and heat. And so I was like, "What in the world?"
And in that moment I suddenly remembered the night before just as the sun was setting I took our dog, Auggie, for a walk. And as we walked past this house there were about three hummingbirds buzzing around the lantana bush and I hadn't even thought about it or noticed it until my chiropractor pointed this out. And it was only when he pointed out what was happening in the world that those hummingbirds even registered in my mind and I was like, "Huh."
And I've thought a lot about that ever since. So I have a prejudice about Arizona autumn, right? Since as long as I can remember, as long as we lived in Arizona, I thought this is a rip off. Right? And all I can see is my lack and I just notice how it's so unfair. I look at the rest of the world with their crisp cold mornings and their colored leaves in their flannel shirt and soup recipes filling up my Instagram feed and I can only think how I don't get any of that and how I'm being deprived of the best parts.
So clearly I was dealt a bad hand but my chiropractor sees this completely differently. He thinks he's the luckiest guy in the world to live in Arizona when the days are hot and the nights are cool and his garden is coming alive. He sees the abundance of nature around him and he's just like amazed by it, right?
Now what I hope is obvious is that me and my chiropractor are living in the same place. We're only a few streets away from each other. The weather the temperature the sun the plants the hummingbirds they're all just circumstances in our lives and they're the same for both of us and yet our experience is completely different because of how we think about where we live. And what I want to show you is the only reason that I see a deficit and I see a lack where my chiropractor sees abundance is because of what I have chosen to see and focus on and what he has chosen to see and focus on.
And it frankly never occurred to me that this could ever in any possible way be the best time of year in Arizona. I saw the bad attitude about fall in Arizona as required because of all the deficiencies that I had noticed. It never crossed my mind that the deficiencies were only created by my own mind.
And this is exactly what I want to talk to you about today: The idea of abundance and how abundance or deficiency is not what is or isn't. True abundance and deficiency are only ever our perspective and our thoughts. Do you see what I mean? It's not the reality of what is. It's only how we think about it.
So I want to point out to the abundance is not just about having a positive attitude or gratitude or counting your blessings, like even though this is hard they're good things to look at. It's not about that at all, but it's about acknowledging that there is always enough. There is always abundance and it's only the perspective of your own brain that creates a deficiency where there is none. In other words the lack and the deficiency is the lie. And this misconception is around us everywhere we look.
From the moment we wake up we notice, I didn't get no sleep and as you look at your day there is not enough time to accomplish everything that we have to do. We start to think that we're not smart enough or capable enough. We look at what we have to do, everything that's required, and how we don't have the energy to meet all the needs and answer all the obligations. We're constantly striving to do more and be more and measure up. But all we see are the ways that we fall short and miss the mark. And then we drop into bed at the end of the day not having accomplished near enough so that we can start it all over again in a few short hours.
Sound familiar? I mean I've heard this is how it is. Today as we talk this through. I'm gonna especially talk about it in terms of time and money and personal worth but really it applies in any area of your life where you feel like there's not enough.
So when it comes to time and money and our personal worth, it's easy to see how there's never enough. It feels like we never have enough time. We never have enough money and we ourselves are never enough. And then we have lots of shame about our lack in each of these areas as well. When I talk to my clients I hear over and over how bad they are at managing their time and their money and they're like so quick to tell me, "Yeah like I'm really bad at the time and money that I been given" and how there's never enough in their life. And it's all because they are not enough and they can't make it work somehow and they're lacking in some really serious ways.
And what happens is we end up creating a little war within ourselves and we use our lack of time and money and worth as reasons to beat ourselves up and notice with even more emphasis how much we lack as decent human beings. What I want you to know is that this shame and self loathing is not helping. It is not bringing you into abundance noticing how much you lack personally will never bring you into abundance. It is in fact simply widening the gap between our lack and the abundance that we want in our lives.
So I think it's really easy to notice the lack because of some deeply ingrained thoughts that we have accepted as the truth. Remember that your brain is exposed to millions of bits of data and information every moment. It's all coming in through your senses, right? And it can not process all of it or pay attention to all of it. So the brain is selective about what it notices and what it doesn't.
And the brain was created to pay attention to all the things that affect its survival first. Which is why it notices problems and lack is a huge problem. If there isn't enough to go around, we could die. Like this is simple math right? And so our brains have a confirmation bias towards noticing where there isn't enough. This means that they naturally filter out any information that is contrary to this bias. The brain never notices abundance at least not naturally.
So the thoughts that our brain is using to protect us by noticing the lack and keep us from dying from that lack are these:
1. Resources are finite and there's never enough.
2. And number two more is always better.
So let's look at the first one. Resources are finite and there's never enough. Like that just seems true. There's only so much time there's only so much money and clearly there's not enough of it. And when there isn't enough, it's like this universe-sized game of musical chairs right? You have to compete to make sure that you get enough. And we feel like it's a race or a fight or a finite pie that we're trying to get a scrap of.
And perhaps you've seen this when you buy something from one of your children and suddenly another child in your family notices that his brother might have more than him. And regardless of what they actually have and what they actually need, they only notice the lack and it is no different for us. We're just trying to get our share. We're just trying to get enough.
The same applies to time. The limits of time and space are finite resources and because they're limited it creates fear in our human brains and we notice the lack. So I was talking to my son about this and he was telling me at the beginning of the week he's just like drowning in stress because from where he stands at the beginning of the week, it looks like there's not enough time. It looks impossible to do all the things in a finite amount of time. And I feel the exact same way.
Like all the obligations in our mind are fighting for a piece of that time puzzle and trying to grab one of the available chairs and that result is stress and panic and resentment. But this worry about the lack is really misguided because we were talking about how by the time we get to Wednesday or Thursday like everything has figured out a place, right? There's been a place and a time for everything.
Okay, so let me give you another example of how noticing the lack always works against us. So this last weekend on Saturday David got up and he went to help somebody in our congregation move. After he finished that he came home for a few minutes and then he went with the youth to the temple and to an activity afterwards. And then when he got home he had to make agendas and work on bishoping for a few hours on the computer. And then the next morning Sunday morning he woke up early and then he returned twelve hours later after spending all day at the church and my brain, which is programmed to watch out for lack, told me that this isn't fair. It told me that time is finite and David only has so much and the time he spends as a bishop is time that he can't spend with us. Do you see the musical chairs game at work?
If David's time is taken by the congregation. Then I don't get a chair. So whenever we think there is not enough we start measuring. And after we get done measuring, we start resenting. And this is exactly what happened to me. I started measuring David's hours and then I started being resentful which did not feel good and was not serving me. Not enough, that feeling of not enough, leaves us resentful of the people and things who put demands on us and who need our help or require our time. But this thought that there is not enough is poisonous because it is not giving me the result I want in my life. And it is leaving me with resentment.
And this is the part I want to point out to you. It is also untrue. It is just what my human brain is telling me. When we think there isn't enough time it feels true but it absolutely isn't. There is always just time. There is all that there is. We have all the time that there actually is. What there is— is, and it is only our perspective that makes it enough or not enough. Time just is and it is only what we think about it that makes it enough or not enough.
When I think instead that we've been given all the time we have and we get to choose how to spend it, then my resentment disappears. I see that the choice to spend time in the service of God and others is the one I want my husband to make.
And when you really think about it you have never actually run out of time. There is still time. There is still all that there is. It is still going, right? It is still there. There is always enough for however you choose to fill it.
And that choice is entirely yours. When you own that you choose how to spend the time that is there, then you can drop into abundance. Every hour and every minute is provided. It Is always enough. You were given all that there is and all the minutes abound around you and you simply get to choose how you will spend from that abundant source.
And the same exact thing applies to money. I have clients who tell me I never have enough money. I used to be one of those clients! I had tons of evidence for how I never had enough but when I ask them and I ask myself, "Have you ever gone hungry? Have you ever literally come to the end where there is no more money?" As unwisely as I have spent my money in my life, I have never once come to the end of all of it. It is still out there. The truth is again that "not enough" is just a thought. When we acknowledge instead that we are rich and that we have always had what we needed that we have never come to the absolute end of money then we can more clearly see the truth.
Even when I was in debt I was rich. To even have a credit line makes you rich. To have access to food and clean drinking water and shelter of any kind makes you rich. And if you stop for a moment and acknowledge the magic abundance of everything around you, of how much you really have, you will be astounded.
So let me give you a little story to illustrate this. A couple of years ago my kids were starting to leave home and I decided that I needed to get a job and get gainfully employed. Speaking of lack, I saw my skills as "not enough" and I thought that I was pretty unqualified for almost anything that I wanted to do. I still wanted to be able to work from home and get my kids to and from school and everything like that so I decided to get a job doing transcription from home.
And after I got the job I had to do some training before I could start like the official job that paid money and so I worked hard for a week learning the job and all the technical things that I needed to know. And then we had these practice transcriptions that you had to do and then finally I was able to start doing my first jobs and I worked hard all week getting ready training and then doing these jobs.
Anyway the company that I worked for paid its transcriptionists on Monday morning for the week's work and so the following Monday after I had done all my training and everything else and I had done my first jobs I got a deposit in my account. It was my first paycheck and it said $12.53. The sum of my entire week's work. $12.53. This is what I can produce.
So later that day I went to make myself some lunch and I pulled the lunch meat out of the refrigerator and sat on the countertop and I went to make myself a sandwich and as I looked down at that packet of turkey on the counter, it said on the label: $12.53. And I stood there in my kitchen staring at that package of turkey. $12.53. And I was just stunned for a minute.
And then I looked around me. I looked at a knife in my hand and the loaf of bread on the countertop and the lettuce and the tomatoes the mayo and the mustard and this entire block of cheese that were sitting next to it. And I heard the air conditioning click on and I looked up from the countertop and I saw my kitchen table and the lights hanging over it and the couch and the television and the wood floors underneath my feet and the roof over my head. And like in this one stunning, overwhelming moment, the reality of my situation came into focus, right?
And I saw what I had never seen before, which was the abundance of my life. I was standing there in this beautiful kitchen with its running water and electric lights and working appliances. I was fully clothed I had a sandwich and a full jar of pickles in front of me.
And I was just like, "Oh my gosh." Like left to my own devices, with my very best efforts in a whole week's time, alll I could produce was enough for one package of turkey. If it was up to me we would all be living naked in the desert with 3 pounds of deli meat to share between us. But luckily it's not just up to me.
And the truth is, what I want you to see is, that it's not just up to any of us and each of us if we're honest can see that when you look around your life at all you have you have more than enough and even more than you can personally create. That somehow you have received from God or from the universe or whoever you believe in that you have received more than you could ever produce on your own.
You are the recipient of thousands of years of knowledge and innovation and invention and human ingenuity. You are the recipient of the gifts of a living planet that has its own water cycle to clean the water; it grows plants and food and feeds animals in abundance. Whatever you have contributed to this world, you have received an abundance in return. And in reality there is nothing that you lack for. When you really consider the staggering amount of abundance and providence and things and food and ease and comfort that is available to you, it may come as a shock.
With a human brain, we are only programmed to notice the lack. But this does not mean that the lack is real. The opposite is true. We live in utter abundance and we have never lacked. We just never knew it. And like when I had that realization in my kitchen of like the reality of my limited personal capacity, and really of each of our limited human capacity to provide, and when I saw that in juxtaposition to the reality of the abundance around me, and where I lived, and what I had, I realized in fact that there is always enough. Enough and to spare.
Okay, I want to give you one more example of this. When my kids started leaving home I had the thought that I didn’t have enough time with them. And all I could see was the lack. And the reality is that every day with them that I had been given was a gift of abundance from God. Every experience and every moment that I had been given with them was not owed me, was not due to me, or was not mine actually in any way. These children and their time on earth had been lent to me in the first place and every day I had with them had been because of God's abundance towards me. And when I finally understood that I had been given so much—so many days, so many experiences, so much mothering and learning and growing with them, I could finally see just how gracious and abundant God had been with me.
I stopped noticing what I didn't have and I saw what I had been given instead. And all of it was a gift. And it was only getting better and more abundant, right? As my children grow in the world and have experiences, I get a front row seat to all of it. And I am the giddy recipient of getting to see them create their own lives. And the abundance of that amazes me every single day. So in reality when I thought I didn't have enough time, the reality is my time is not limited. My time is abundantly forever with them.
So this thought "resources are limited and there's not enough" is totally untrue and I don't know how this works, but there's actually so much more than we ever really see
Okay, the second thought that prevents us from feeling abundant in our life and noticing the lack is the thought that "more is better" or "more is always better."
And the trouble with this thought "more is always better" is that there is no end to the need for more. Because obviously there could always be more. We think that if we have more than we can finally relax and feel secure. But this is a fallacy. When there's always more, you never arrive at the place where you're secure. And no matter how much money or time or resources you have, more is always better. When we think that more is better then you can never be satisfied. You can't ever acknowledge the abundance of the moment, no matter how much you have.
So Marianne Williamson coaches very rich clients and she says that it doesn't matter how rich you are, when you think "more is better" then there really never is enough. She says, even for these clients who are so wealthy there is this fear that they need more and that they're going to run out. And she says there aren't enough bags in the world for all the people who think they're going to end up as a bag ladies.
So when we think that more is better we are only noticing a perceived lack. And we take our eye off what is which is the abundance of the moment right now.
So there is a psychology professor at Cornell named Thomas Gilovich and starting with the Barcelona Olympics in 1992 he started doing studies on Olympic athletes. And he writes about how bronze medalists are much happier than silver medalists. And it's because of this idea that "more is better." So he said that for bronze medalists the bronze medal is "the more." These bronze medalists feel like they were lucky to make the podium at all and they're so happy to have a medal.
But for silver medalists, they can see how close they were to getting the gold and this makes them feel like a little bit more would have been better. So the silver medalists take their eyes off the abundance of their own achievement and think "more is better," right? The gold would be better. Where the bronze medalists see the abundance of making the podium at all, and they see getting the medal as "more"—like I could have been in fourth, but I got a medal. So we know theoretically that silver is better than bronze but the concentration on lack in the silver medalists as opposed to the concentration on abundance by the bronze medalist determines the happiness or satisfaction that each athlete felt. And he said by and large, bronze medalists are so much happier than silver ones. And it's because of this idea that "more is better."
So many of us look at our lives and we notice where it should have gone differently. And then we make it mean that our life experience is missing something or lacking something or that more of something that somebody else has would be better. And we think someone else's experience is more than ours or preferable to ours, and that somehow our life isn't quite as nice and shiny. And when we do that, we don't see the abundance of the life experiences that have been ours and ours alone, and know that every one of them is a purposeful abundant gift from a loving Father.
We're like the children who open all the gifts on Christmas morning and then ask, "Was that it?" That never happened in our house.
When we think that more is better, it's just a painful way to live. It never allows us to see the perfect rightness and enoughness of our lives and what we have been given. So the thought that "more is better" is one I would just completely give up. What if this is perfect? What is this—what I have right now in this moment, this time, and this money and this energy, —what if this is exactly what I need for my life experiences?
Now I want to finish today by talking about the way we see ourselves. In the same way that we see not enough in our time and our money, we often feel the same way about ourselves. We wish we were more. We think we are lacking–perhaps we're lacking in worth, in value, maybe in abilities, in talent, in brains, in beauty, or a million more ways and this is, again, because our brains are programmed to notice what's wrong with us. And often that shows up as a thought about what we are not about what we lack that if we were more somehow then we would be better.
This week I was talking to a client who was talking about how he wanted to take more classes before he really pursued his dreams. And I talked to another client who said she really wanted to start her new business but she wasn't quite ready and she was waiting until she felt confident and ready. So both of these clients wanted to be more somehow before they started. They wanted more knowledge. They wanted more preparation. They wanted to feel more confident before they could go after their dreams.
The thing is, we all believe that we are not enough yet. But we also all think that it's possible that at some future date, if we can get our lives together and be a little bit better, then we will arrive someday at "enough" and then we can do the things that we want to do in our lives.
I have good news bad news. Let's start with the bad news. The bad news is you are never going to feel like you are enough. That day is never coming. You are never going to feel like you have enough talent or education or qualification or charisma or beauty or information or experience or confidence. Remember your brain believes more is better which means you will never, ever, ever get to enough for your brain.
The really good news is that knowing this allows you to move forward towards your goals and dreams anyway. You don't have to feel like you are enough to move forward. That is not a requirement because remember that day is never going to happen and I think it will be so powerful for you to stop arguing with your brain that you are enough. And to just recognize that it's always, always going to be your brain's opinion that you are not enough. It just happens to be wrong about that.
So what I told my clients is that you already have everything inside you to do what you need to do right now. You are rich. You are abundant in talent and ideas and gifts and knowledge and wisdom and power. You just can't see it. You just see the lack. But this is only because your brain has been looking for your lack and not your abundance. It does not mean it's not there. It is there. It has always been there.
There is no end to your enoughness and you are abundantly more than enough. Enough and to spare—to do your personal work in the world. Remember that when your emphasis is on deficiency and those natural default thoughts that the brain has about finite resources and that more is better you will never have enough or be enough. This is just the story we tell ourselves and you will only see what's missing. But when you can redirect your brain to notice all the abundance in your life and in yourself you will be amazed at what you can create.
So this last weekend my husband and I watched that movie called Yesterday and the premise of the movie is that there are like this just a handful of people on earth that can remember the Beatles and their songs. And at one point, one of the characters says, "A world without the Beatles is a world that is infinitely worse." And throughout the movie there are other things that the character finds that were never created, right? Like Coca-Cola and Harry Potter—like these things are just missing in the world.
And this just made me think like every one of those things was optional. The music the Beatles made was optional. Coca cola was optional. Perish the thought! Harry Potter was optional. None of it had to be made. And I can promise you that the people who made those things thought they weren't enough. They thought what they made wasn't enough and their brains told them that they were too lacking in something to create it and put it out into the world. And I am personally so infinitely grateful that they ignored their very human brains and created from their personal abundance anyway.
You are waiting for abundance to appear. You are waiting for the lack and deficiency you see to be answered. What I want you to know is that the abundance is already there. You just have to notice it. You just have to choose to see it. You just have to recognize that there is enough and to spare— enough time, enough money, enough of you.
And as you look around your life, notice that what your brain is telling you is just a lie created by the thought that there is never enough. Notice in fact that there is another way to see it entirely. There is so much. You have so much time that you get to choose how to spend. You have so much money that you get to decide how to spend. You have so many gifts and abilities that you get to choose how to share. Ask yourself, "What if there is enough and to spare? How would my life be different if I could see the abundance that is actually there?"
Abundance is just as available to you as deficiency and lack, as a thought, as a way of life, as a way of seeing your life. These are not the circumstances. These are not the facts. These are thoughts and you get to choose the one you want.. and that my friends is 100% awesome. I'll see you next week.