A practical exercise to help you feel more abundant.
So how do you feel about sharing?
I remember being at a mother and baby group with Holly when she was about nine months old. She was at that blissful stage of being able to sit but not go anywhere which meant I could relax and enjoy the company of the other mums.
One little boy was older and had mastered crawling. As we were talking, he crawled over and grabbed the toy another child was holding. The outcome was predictable and noisy.
What was less predictable was the response of his mum who, delighted by her son’s behaviour told us all, “Well you have to take what you want in this life.”
l was stunned. If Holly had done that I would have taken the toy from her and returned it. I believed that children needed to learn to share toys not just take what we wanted.
Well, I might have been wrong about that.
This week I have been reading The Abundance Project by Derek Rydall. In a section about the Law of Circulation, I came across the “consciousness of having”.
Derek Rydall explains that a big challenge to abundant living is that early in life many of us got the message that asking for what we wanted, doing what we wanted or taking care of ourselves was a bad thing.
One of the ways this happens is being forced to share before we are are ready to.
“There’s a reason children don’t want to share initially - they are still learning how to have. They’re discovering what it means to possess something and are embodying the feeling tone of having. This is a critical developmental stage. If the child is forced to share before they’re ready it short circuits this stage, and mentally and emotionally gets them stuck at that level.”
He goes on to explain that when this happens children can go two ways. They may learn that having is a bad thing which means they may grow up to give too much of themselves from a place of shame and guilt.
Or they may rebel and become possessive and grow up to withhold themselves due to anger and a fear of losing.
I have been studying money and abundance for years now and this is the first time I have come across the idea learning how to “have”.
I began to think of all the ways in which I had probably forced my children to share before they were ready. There’s only two and a half years between Holly and Patrick and I’m sure I would have expected Holly to share her toys with Patrick. Had she been able to learn how to “have” before that happened?
I know I was expected to share with my cousin who arrived ten months after I was born and that was tough.
I also began to wonder about the money personalities and how not learning how to “have” might explain the challenges they face.
So is this just something else to blame our parents for, or feel guilty about if we are parents ?
No, we can develop a consciousness of having as adults. It’s all too easy to go through life focusing on what we don’t have rather than what we do.
When you think about it, large corporations have teams of people devoted to making sure you focus on what’s missing, not what’s there.
Try this exercise to focus on what is in your life and start feeling more abundant.
Take a moment to record all that you have. Start with what you can touch or see at the moment. The clothes you are wearing, the computer or phone you are reading this on. The chair you are sitting on.
Then think about your home. The contents of your cupboards, the clothes, shoes, bags and books you have there.
Pay attention to any “yes, buts” that come up. “Yes, but I don’t own my home” “Yes, but the furniture isn’t mine”.
What might they be revealing about what stopped you developing a consciousness of having before now?
Think about the money in your accounts, your investments. Your car, your TV, radio, cooking utensils. Visualise walking around your home and record everything.
Then how about everything you have the use of? Again be aware of any “yes buts”, resistance or uncomfortable feelings. Be curious.
You may well be surprised by how much you really have. This isn’t meant as an exercise in being satisfied with what you have in a limiting way. It’s about celebrating what you have already created.
When you celebrate what you do have, your focus is naturally going to be more abundant. It also helps build your confidence, when you look at what you have created you feel able to create even more.
Practicing having helps you build on your foundations.
As Derek Rydall points out: