When we’ve asked people in the community about their “word of the year,” or when participants of programs like the Have A Plum Year program share their dreams and goals, abundance is a word that shows up early and often. It’s also a phrase used in many success groups and in spiritual talk.
What is abundance, anyway?
I don’t think we appreciate the fullest expression/definition of abundance. And, if you truly want abundance in your life, you need to know what you are asking for (otherwise, if it showed up, would you know it was there?).
I have opinions. Let’s dive more into this.
The Dictionary Says
Looking up the definition for abundance, we see:
- a very large quantity of something
- the state or condition of having a copious quantity of something; plentifulness
- plentifulness of the good things of life; prosperity
- from the root word for ‘overflowing’
A couple of interesting things here. Most of the definitions basically just use a synonym word (plentifulness, prosperity, overflowing); that’s not really a definition. And we have the same problem — if you saw plentifulness drive by your house, would you be able to point at it and say, that’s plentifulness? Or if your friend finds prosperity, how would they describe or explain it?
The top line — “a very large quantity” — is a good start, but it begs more and more questions. How much is a very large quantity? Is there a point when a very large quantity becomes too much and it’s no longer abundance? Is the large quantity the same for everyone? Is the large quantity the same for one area of our live versus another — e.g. is money abundance different than health abundance different than friends and family abundance?
These Questions Have Answers
These questions have answers, if you’re willing to get still enough and think about them. I think you can see where I am going with my line of questioning. Some keys to understanding abundance are, in my opinion:
- Abundance is on the inside. It’s a feeling first, an amount second — so even if the amount is enough, if you don’t feel or enjoy it then it will never feel abundant. Which makes it realllly tricky to get your head around.
- Because abundance is on the inside, what is abundant to you might not be abundant to someone else. So, you can’t go to Google and find out if your life experience is abundant. That’s up for you to decide.
Putting aside the feelings part for a second, there is something that should be said about abundance and quantity. I use words like “quantity” and “amount” because abundance is not just about money. I think you have to look at abundance in all the areas of your life (my wheel of life reference is useful here).
Do you have an abundance of fun in your life? An abundance of romance? An abundance of friends? An abundance of good health? An abundance of career opportunities and creative projects? An abundance of material goods — a house you love to live in, delicious food, etc. An abundance of personal growth experience?
Most of these things are difficult to put numerical figures on.
Abundance Journaling Prompts
Abundance is difficult, but at the end of the day, you get to decide what abundance means to you and go for it! Thus I’d like to leave you with some journaling prompts about abundance you might find useful. Take these into your journal or share with your BFF over tea and get into some deep conversation about what you really want out of your life experience.
- Abundance is…
- The areas in my life that are abundant…
- This month/quarter/year, I want to focus on abundance in…
- Abundance in (answer from above) feels like….