I ran across an article about three myths that keep us trapped in a belief system that is negative in so many ways. Lynne Twist, author of The Soul of Money, suggests that these myths are traps that stand between us and our own sense of abundance and security.
When you were a child, did you and your siblings ever argue over who was going to get the biggest piece of cake or the largest slice of watermelon? I know we did – even though I do not remember a single time in my life, ever, when there was not enough cake or watermelon to go around. Children live with a highly developed sense of fairness – in our Western culture we grow up being aware of who has how much of something. We are unconsciously taught to believe that there may not be enough, and that having more is better. In many instances we are also taught that there is nothing we can do to change any of that – in the case of a cake or a watermelon, there is indeed not an endless supply, but we tend to transfer those childhood feelings about scarcity and want to bigger-picture concepts like love. Many adults fear that there is not enough love to go around, not realizing that the capacity of the heart to love is enlarged by the process of giving love. Love does not thrive in a scarcity economy.
The three myths that we have been taught to believe are:
1. There’s not enough to go around. 2. More is better. 3. That’s just the way it is.
Believing that there is not enough causes us to live in fear. Believing that more is better leaves us perpetually unsatisfied. Believing that we have no way to change anything creates a feeling of helplessness and hopelessness that leads us to abandon our own agency, our own initiative, our own ability to believe in and to hope for change.
This last belief, the belief that we can’t do anything to create change, is to me the most pernicious, and it is the one that is pervasive at this time as we confront a world that is essentially living in fear. On a physical and organic level, fear causes a kind of tunnel-vision. Focus narrows to the immediate and turns to survival. Protectionism increases.
Friends, we have it within ourselves to choose differently – to focus on the good, the beautiful, the joyful; to remember the joys in our lives and to be grateful for the abundance that we do have. Research has shown us that focusing on that for which we are grateful in an intentional and daily way results in positive changes in behavior.
Amy Morin published an article in Forbes Magazine in 2014 that listed seven different ways that gratitude improves our lives. The link is below:
Gratitude supports physical well-being, increases empathy and decreases aggression, improves psychological health, and improves sleep, among other benefits. Gratitude is free; there is an endless supply of it; it is there for the taking!
Let’s counter the myths that trap us by choosing gratitude – you will be glad you did.
About Susan Hammonds-White, EdD, LPC/MHSP
Communications and relationship specialist, counselor, Imago Relationship Therapist, businesswoman, mother, proud native Nashvillian – in private practice for 30+ years. I have the privilege of helping to mend broken hearts. Contact me at http://www.susanhammondswhite.com.
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