What do you think about when you hear the word abundance? Do you think of money? Most people do, but what about abundance in emotional fulfillment or abundance in love or creative solutions? The lack of abundance in all of these areas needs to be prevalent in order to create a well-rounded and appreciated life. According to Deepak Chopra, “The most crucial thing to understand is that abundance begins in your awareness.” When you are prepared to adapt and change your life, abundance will not be a burden to you. He suggests building an attitude of abundance in small steps to lead to your big goal. This will help create a sense of self where you can accept higher levels of responsibility for the abundance you want in your life. Here are seven steps that are key to use when wanting to increase your abundance factor: 1. Shift your negative thoughts. Once a day, pick one thing that you feel negative about and during the day, do one positive action that negates the negative one. For example, if you don’t like your physical look- change up your hairstyle or start a daily affirmation like “I love myself even though I don’t like my hairdo today”. Fix what can be fixed and walk away from the things that cannot be fixed. Ask for help from someone who can give wise advice. Look at your role in creating the negative thoughts. What can you shift? I didn’t like how small my kitchen is the other and yelled it, then I promptly said, “I love my kitchen, I love my kitchen, I love my kitchen. I am just frustrated because what I am working on takes more space and I didn’t prepare myself for the task.” Taking responsibility for your negative thoughts is the firs step to changing them. 2. Futility will get you nowhere. Having thoughts of “It’s hopeless, nothing will ever change” will only pull you down the slope into low levels of energy and living and the “why me” mentality that can lead to depression. Reject this temptation and shift the negative voice in your head by telling it you know that that is the voice of futility and isn’t really you! You are able to persevere through anything. You’ve done it before, you will do it again. Go back to finding the positive in the situation, even if that is being able to think outside the box and give yourself a boost of “I am not helpless, I got this!” 3. Take responsibility. One of the quickest ways to treat the feeling of hopelessness or the feeling of being a victim is to take full responsibility for your life. When you are in a victim mode you feel as though your life is being controlled by external forces or circumstances. The best solution is to realize that you are the only common denominator and that situations will change only after you stop looking outside for circumstances to change. You need to be the one to take responsibility and change the circumstances. This is where you are shifting to a more positive stance in saying, “This is my life and I am reclaiming it!” Abundance comes from within. When you take responsibility you are accepting all the good, bad and ugly that comes with it. It is beneficial to have the bad and ugly in your life as you learn to appreciate the good even more. 4. Become more mindful. The opposite of abundance is contraction. When you are in a tight situation and you feel as though there is no way out, you can’t think of any solutions for the situation or you are carrying around a heavy burden these are all signs that you are in contraction and not expansion. Expansion is the best friend to abundance. When you can expand you will bring in new possibilities, new light, a new idea or plan. Being in this relaxed state you are more open and your awareness isn’t as confined so you are able to look outside the box for new solutions. The best way to do this is to become more mindful each day. Set aside time every day, at least 10 minutes where you sit in peace and quiet and calm your brain. Practice some deep breathing counting your inhales and exhales. Put your headphones on and listen to some calming music or a guided meditation. Let yourself become centered and calm. It doesn’t take much time, but the benefits will last all day. Slowing down and not getting caught up in the stress of day-to-day life will benefit your mind, body and soul. 5. Create a higher vision for your life. Do you know someone who is well off, but still miserable? I know more people who are barely making it, but are very fulfilled in their life and not miserable. How is this possible? Material abundance does not contain any fulfillment. Fulfillment comes from a vision from within. The higher the vision, the more fulfillment. In fact, the vision can act like a magnet for abundance. Having that vision will set into motion processes as it builds upon itself. Just like practicing something over and over and you become good at it, manifesting, or creating that vision of what you want reinforces the positive perspective and there is more positivity to come. This requires focus, belief and persistence. What kind of vision do you want to create? Some are pretty simple: I will be honest and sincere; I will love and receive love the best I can; I will bring joy to others. Others can be more profound and go to a deeper level. Take a moment and write down the names of three people you admire and who inspire you to be a better person. Behind each name list three words that describe them. When you are done, circle the words that are the same. My word that kept popping up was genuine and authentic. I used that word to build upon how I could become more genuine and authentic in my everyday life. Maybe you want to create a vision of service, devotion, creativity or support within your community. When you incorporate it into your thinking, your own vision will become crystal clear to you and you can create an amazing future. 6. Seek out other’s perspectives. Sometimes when difficult situations arise, we can withdraw and not reach out for support. Thoughts of “It’s my problem and I will deal with it” can lead to isolation and frustration making you feel worse. Other people have been able to confront these same situations and have lived to tell the story. They are great listeners and support for you at this time. If you don’t have a friend in your circle that you think can relate to what you are going through, join a support group specifically to what you are working through and create some new friendships. 7. Celebrate all your successes and accomplishments. Abundance starts small and as frustrating as that may sound since the word ‘abundance’ means a large quantity of something, but this doesn’t mean it will happen overnight or all at once. Think of mastering how to ride a bike. You start with small steps, like using training wheels, until you are comfortable and then move on to the next step, no training wheels and mom or dad holding the bike, and then finally moving to doing it all on your own. You are attaining a skill when you are creating abundance in your life. Going slowly through the steps ensures a steady procession to succeed at your goal. Speeding through this process will set yourself up to fail. Your every thought and intention along the way becomes part of the process and part of the loop. It is important to be consistent, focused and take advantage of each small step toward your goal. All your accomplishments and successes need to be admired and appreciated along the way. Take time every day to be grateful for what you do have. Write down three things you are grateful for and one accomplishment every day. This will close the gap between what you want from life and what life is already giving you. Trust this process, even though it may be slow, the process is part of the journey. Being grateful for what you currently have will show you just how abundant you already are and then lead you to create more in your life. This is how those who are barely making it are still more fulfilled than those who are well off. They are more grateful for what they have and feel more fulfilled. If more comes their way, fabulous, but if it doesn’t they are still okay with what they have. How are you abundant in your current life? How do you want to create more abundance?